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Jun 16, 2010 11:42 AM by Melissa Canone

People living near forests need to landscape for fire safety

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - An LSU AgCenter forestry agent says
people living near forests need to landscape for fire safety.
Keith Hawkins says this includes fire-resistant yard plants.
He says there's no fireproof plant, but baldcypress, red maple
and sweet gum are less flammable than most. But ornamental
junipers, yaupon holly, red cedar and young pine - and other plants
with resins, oils and waxes - burn more readily.
Hawkins says the eight-foot cleared area required by state law
may be too little. He agrees with the Southwest Forestry
Association recommendation of 20-foot firebreaks.
He recommends keeping yards raked and gutters, eaves and roofs
clear of leaves and debris; carefully spacing trees and shrubs;
keeping plants and lawns well-watered, and pruning trees to 6 to 10
feet above the ground.

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