You are responsible for keeping your property fire safe. Use these tools and resources to manage your vegetation.
Follow these steps to manage your vegetation and protect your home from fire.
Create defensible space
Increase your home’s chance of surviving a wildfire by creating defensible space. Defensible space is the buffer between a building on your property and anything combustible around it, including vegetation and combustible storage. This buffer reduces fire spread and provides firefighters an area to work in to defend your home during a fire.
To help you with this important work, download or visit these resources:
- Learn about Defensible Space Zones from Cal Fire.
- Download a diagram that illustrates defensible space on a typical Berkeley-sized lot.
- Read recommendations from FireSafe Marin about fire-resistant designs, materials, and plants.
- Learn more about vegetation management near power lines:
- Find out who’s in charge of a tree that you are concerned about.
Harden your home
Hardening your home, together with creating a defensible space, helps further increase the chances that your home will survive a wildfire. It involves actions such as re-roofing with fire-safe materials, covering vents, and boxing in eaves. Learn more about Hardening Your Home from Cal Fire.
Understand our inspection program
Assess the vegetation on your property multiple times each year as it grows. Berkeley performs vegetation management inspections in the Berkeley Hills Area, specifically Fire Zones 2 and 3. Learn more by downloading:
- A map of Fire Zone boundaries
- The Wildland Urban Interface Inspection form
- The Vegetation Management Self-Inspection checklist
If you have concerns about a specific property (public or your neighbor), report a fire code violation.
Take advantage of a vegetation disposal program
If you’re part of a subset of homes in Fire Zones 2 and 3 that pay a special tax, ask about the Fire Fuel Chipper and Debris Bin Program, a seasonal vegetation disposal program. There is no application needed to get these special dumpsters. Call the Customer Service Center (311 from a landline phone in Berkeley).
Prepare your home and community by becoming Firewise
Take action to protect your home from wildfires and get involved with your community by participating in Firewise USA, a program from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Start a Firewise Community with other community members by contacting:
Berkeley Fire Department
Know when and how to go
Even with vegetation management, you should still understand fire weather and be ready for wildfire evacuation.