Lawns and grasses

A well irrigated and maintained lawn can be an effective fire break

Lawns and grasses can be planted in strategic locations to break up areas of larger, more combustible vegetation. A well irrigated and maintained lawn can be an effective fire break, especially when combined with non-combustible features, like pathways, fences or stone walls.


  • Choose lawn and grass species that have low flammability characteristics, and which don’t produce a lot of dead plant material. Grass species which remain green throughout the summer are best.
  • Keep lawn and grasses short, well-watered and clear of debris. This is very important for grasses under or around trees, shrubs, buildings, and other combustible elements.
  • Think strategically about how you can use lawn and cut grasses in the design of your defendable spaces.
  • Appropriately dispose of lawn and grass clippings. If possible, dispose of clippings using the green-waste bins provided by your local council.


  • Avoid highly flammable lawn and grass species.
  • Avoid planting large areas of lawn or cut grasses – add breaks in the vegetation using non-combustible features.
  • Manage areas of lawn and cut grasses in a way that doesn’t create an additional fire risk. For example, don’t slash or mow during hot weather and don’t store waste vegetation in large compost piles. Large, dry stacks of waste vegetation are extremely vulnerable to ember and flame attack and can spread fire to other parts of the property.

Close up of fresh green lawn lit with morning sunlight

A well maintained lawn can be an effective fire break (source: SingjaiStocker/Shutterstock)