Landscaping services for cosmetic purposes or general upkeep have to stop. Arborist, landscaping, gardening, and similar service professionals can continue only if they are necessary to maintain the habitability, sanitation, operation of businesses or residences, or the safety of residents, employees, or the public (such as fire safety or tree trimming to prevent a dangerous condition). Only properties within a defined fire hazard zone need to comply with wildfire defensible space or abatement standards.

General defensible space requirements for wildland fire safety can be found here but you should go to your fire departments website, or contact them about specific requirements for your property or whether you are in a designated zone. Many fire prevention bureaus are running with reduced staff during the crisis, so please consider this when calling them.

Landscapers and other professionals performing services under contract with governmental agencies should consult the relevant agency to determine whether their services are deemed essential.

*Please note that we are providing our interpretation of the County’s Order. The Governor’s Order may be more restrictive on this subject. While we leave interpretation of the Governor’s Order to the Governor, you should be cautious before engaging in this activity and ensure that you are complying with the Governor’s Order for those areas where it is more restrictive than the County’s Order.

For a list of Frequently Asked Questions on the San Mateo County Order, click this link: