Privacy or property? |

Privacy or property?

Having lived through the 49er fire, I understand the reason and need for a defensible zone around a home. I also highly value my privacy – it’s one of the major reasons I live where I live. Sometimes choices have to be made as to what is more important, privacy or property.

The day the 49er Fire started, I was sure that the firefighters would stop it before it went into Wildwood, which was between me and the fire. I was wrong, but we were able to make our defensible zone more defensible by wetting it down. That zone (and the firefighters who defended it) saved our house when the fire went through the next afternoon.

Our neighbor wasn’t so lucky: his house, surrounded by a privacy barrier of manzanita, exploded when the fire went through.

While there is no guarantee that any home is safe in a fire, not even mine, there are ways to enjoy your privacy and maintain a defensible zone by utilizing non-native plants. Don’t depend upon the lives of firefighters to defend your property if you have decided that your privacy is more important than your property.

Linda Blunk

Penn Valley

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