Defensible Space Landscape Architecture — Marin, Napa, Sonoma Counties

defensive space landscape design planCalifornia residents are familiar with the dangers of seasonal wildfires and know that a defensible space around their home will give firefighters better odds of saving their home in the event of a fire. Fortunately, defensible spaces can be as beautiful as they are functional. Catlin Landscape Architecture integrates the need for fire safety with clients’ dreams of a beautiful landscape design.


Wildland Fire Mitigation

Before becoming a landscape designer in Marin County, I was a seasonal firefighter with the U.S. Forest Service. I apply what I learned then to defensible space landscape designs. Landscape design for properties adjacent to the oak-studded and grassy hillsides of Marin, Sonoma, and Napa counties require specialized knowledge in fire science and plant selection.

Vegetation Management Plan (VMP)

A vegetation management plan (VMP) is part of the defensible space planning and design provided by Catlin Landscape Architecture. The VMP is generally required as part of a formal design review, for example with a municipality or county planning agency. It's a written report that dovetails with landscape design working drawings. In a VMP the landscape designer provides a plant list; a bibliography of the document or publication in which the plants are stated to be fire resistant; a site assessment detailing the slope, aspect (direction in which the slope faces), and existing plant material; and defensible space maintenance standards — guidelines for keeping the property fire safe.

Compliance with Fire Safety Codes

Any time is a good time to assess the risk of fire danger, but for homeowners embarking on new construction and some remodels, fire-safe landscape design may be part of the permit process. Catlin Landscape Design can help you navigate through the jurisdictional requirements and interpret the fire safety codes into a landscape design you'll appreciate as much for the aesthetics as the security.

For more information

Firesafe Marin...
California Department of Forestry and Fire Prevention...
Contact Catlin Landscape Design to learn more about a defensible space plan for your property...