Selecting the right plants is almost a matter of life or death in the parched West.

5 Fire-Resistant Plants for Your Garden Landscape
Chalk lettuce (Dudleya pulverulenta)/ Visuals Unlimited / Getty Images
If you’re in an area where wildfires are prevalent, you can help protect your property and garden by landscaping with fire-resistant plants. These are plants that tend to hold water in their stems or leaves. They also grow low, slow, and with little care, and have less volatile resins or oils. Lindsey Collinsworth, education director at the San Luis Obispo Botanical Garden, told us how to protect our gardens from wildfires last week. Here she shares her top five picks: 1. Ceanothus impressus ‘Vandenberg’ A lower growing native shrub with blue flowers  

Chalk lettuce (Dudleya pulverulenta)/ Visuals Unlimited / Getty Images
2. Small cape rush (Chondropetalum tectorum) A large grass-like plant from South Africa with beautiful structure 3. Blue-eyed grass (Sisyrinchium bellum) Native to California and Oregon, a clump-forming perennial with narrow bluish-green grass-like leaf blades and bright blue flowers  

California blue-eyed grass (Brenda Tharp / Getty Images)
4. Chalk lettuce (Dudleya pulverulenta) A California native succulent with 12 to 18-inch-wide rosettes with chalky white leaves 5. Crassula capitella ‘Campfire’ A branching succulent native to southern Africa that matures from light green to bright red  

Campfire plant (Shigeki Morihira / EyeEm / Getty Images)
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