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By Roberta Tolan
This is the third in a series of articles describing what you can do to create a defensible zone around your home to maximize the chances that your home will survive a wildfire.
Again, there are no guarantees that even if you do everything right your home will survive, but anything that you do can help.
An effective defensible space involves three management zones in which different techniques are used. These management zones should be created around each structure to be protected and it is important to remember that once created, these zones may need ongoing attention to maintain the defensible space.
In the previous weeks’ articles we described how to clear Zone 1 and 2. The following describes what to do in Zone 3, the area farthest from your home or structure and extending from the edge of Zone 2 to your property boundaries.
Zone 3 should provide a gradual transition from Zone 2 to areas farther from your home. Consider the following practices when managing Zone 3.
• Healthy forests include trees of multiple ages, sizes and species and where adequate growing room is maintained. But remember that a forest with a higher canopy reduces the chance of a surface fire climbing into the tops of the trees, and might be a priority if this zone has steep slopes.
• Two to three snags with a minimum diameter of 8 inches can be retained in Zone 3 to provide wildlife habitat. Make sure that the snags do not pose a threat to power lines or firefighter access roads.
• Mowing grasses is not necessary in Zone 3.
• Any approved method of slash treatment is acceptable in Zone 3 including chipping or lop-and-scatter.
As you begin the process of creating a wildfire defensible zone around your home, remember to begin from the area closest to your home, the “home ignition zone,” and work out.
Remember, the more you do, the better the chances that your home will survive a wildfire.
This information was taken from the Colorado State Forest Service publication “Protecting Your Home from Wildfire: Creating Wildfire-Defensible Zones” and can be downloaded in its entirety at www.csfs.colostate.edu. More information on protecting your home and property from fire can be found at the Colorado State Forest Service website at www.csfs.colostate.edu and from Colorado State University Extension and its partnering organizations at www.ext.colostate.edu/fire/.
Archuleta County Fair
The 2013 Archuleta County Fair is just around the corner, Aug. 1-4, and there are a multitude of activities, both old favorites and exciting new events to choose from.
Our 4-H youth will be exhibiting the projects that they have been working on all year and the public is invited to enter recently finished projects for judging in the many Open Class Categories.
Plan on attending some of the favorite fair events including the Horse Show, Junk Yard Jamboree, Ranch Rodeo and, of course, the 4-H Chuckwagon Dinner, followed by the Fair Dance featuring The High Rollers on Saturday night.
New at the fair this year will be a Farmers Market on Sunday afternoon and again this year, the BBQ Judging at 11 a.m. on Sunday. Check out all of the scheduled fair activities at www.archuletacountyfair.com, including registration dates and times for all open class categories.
Full four-day and single-day entry wristbands can be purchased at the CSU Extension office located at the fairgrounds on U.S. 84.
Hope to see you at the fair!
July 18 — 4-H Demonstration Makeup Day, 8 a.m.
July 18 — Thursday Night Rodeo, 6 p.m.
July 19 — 4-H Scrapbooking Project meeting, 8 a.m.
July 19 — 4-H Wolf Creek Wonders Club meeting, 2 p.m.
July 20 — 4-H Dog Agility Project meeting, 10 a.m.
July 22 — 4-H’s Clean the Fair Building, 9 a.m.
July 22 — 4-H Sewing Project meeting, 3 p.m.
July 22 — 4-H Livestock interviews, 4:30 p.m.
July 23 — 4-H Sewing Project meeting, 3 p.m.
July 24 — 4-H Sports Fishing Project meeting, 6 p.m.
July 24 — Archuleta County Fair board meeting, 6 p.m.
July 24 — 4-H Livestock Weigh-in, 6 p.m.
July 25 — 4-H Sewing Project meeting, 3 p.m.
July 25 — Thursday Night Rodeo, 6 p.m.
July 26 — 4-H fairgrounds cleanup, 8 a.m.
July 26 — 4-H Rabbit Project meeting, 3 p.m.
July 27 — County Fair Quilt registration, 8 a.m.
July 27 — County Fair Quilt judging, 1 p.m.
Colorado State University Extension provides science based information on youth development (4-H), agriculture and natural resources, horticulture, family and consumer sciences and community development.