Fire Safe Gardens
The South Valley Fleurs Garden Club
“We nurture the Fire Safe Garden”
The Fire Safe Demonstration Garden at Hollister Fire Station 2 at Union Road and Airline Highway is the result of an idea fostered by the San Benito Fire Safe Council. Its implementation was a collaboration of efforts by CAL FIRE, the Hollister Fire Department, Landscape Designers, Rosemary Bridwell and Allison Saunders; the South Valley Fleurs Garden Club and the San Benito County Fire Safe Council.
This is a large garden adjacent to the driveway of the fire station with a winding stone wall and interlocking paver pathway which takes you into the garden of flowers, trees and shrubs, each variety identified using plant markers. The varieties planted here are drought tolerant and many are California Natives. They require little water year round and thrive on warm temperatures. All were selected for their resistance to fire and were arranged in the garden as to restrict fire from advancing to the building. Trees were planted at a distance from the building to prevent fire embers from being carried to the roof of the building.
A fountain greets you as you enter the garden. A curved four foot high wall separates the garden from the street and is softened by several Rosemary and Jasmine Plants. Raised beds hug the building side of the walkway and gradually roll down to a flagstone stepping area.
A dry creek bed wanders throughout the garden which is lined with river rock and filled with smaller stones. When you reach the dry creek bed, you find a ground stone path which takes you over a flagstone bridge. As you wander the garden paths you can explore the different plant forms and colors.
The entire garden perimeter is planted with Ceanothus, a California Native Plant which acts as a buffer for the garden from wind and blowing debris. This type of planting is referred to as a Hedge Row and is often used by gardeners and farmers to draw beneficial insects to their garden as well.
A bold red and white lettered sign identifies the garden, as a Fire Safe Demonstration Garden. It faces Union Road and tells the public of the sponsorship of the garden.
The South Valley Fleurs Garden Club have adopted the Fire Safe Garden as their Hollister community project and have spent many hours maintaining the garden over the past year. A bronze sign placed in the garden by the Fleurs Garden Club says “Tended by Fleurs Garden Club.”
Take some time and take a walk through the Fire Safe Garden that was created to inform, as well as to be enjoyed.