After our recent evacuation because of a forest fire, we have been a lot more concerned about what we could do to reduce the fire hazard around our house. We attended a public meeting on the subject and came away rather sobered after realizing just how hazardous our property is, so lately I have been working doing things to reduce the hazard.
I have always loved the wildness of our property, and tend to let nature take its course, as a result there are now a lot of things that I need to change. Coniferous trees are much more of a fire hazard than deciduous trees. Luckily, most of the trees around our house are deciduous (Birch, Cottonwood, and Aspen) but there are a few Spruce conifers. One thing that can be done to reduce the hazard of conifers is to cut off all of the branches within 6 feet (2 m) of the ground.
That is what I did to one yesterday. The photo shows the before (on the left) and after of my work on the right. The tree now looks a little manipulated, but I guess I will get used to its new shape. It does seem a lot safer from a fire.
This particular Spruce was not the healthiest and seemed to be on decline, but I do have a really beautiful Spruce with branches down to the ground that will be more of a sacrifice to trim, because I love the natural way it presently looks. It will be harder for me to “trim” it, but we live in dangerous times and we have to do what we can to mitigate the danger as much as we can.
View my paintings at: davidmarchant2.ca