How Far Away from a Propane Tank Should Shrubs Be Placed?

A propane tank is a quality example of a essential utility product which adds little to the beauty of a landscape. Landscaping around the cylinder can mask the eyesore, but careful planning is needed to achieve both functionality and attractiveness. Good plant selection and spacing are crucial to ensure success.

Proper Strategy

Planning before planting is an integral element in successfully landscaping around a propane tank. Because the cylinder must be serviced or filled on a regular basis, plenty of space is necessary to get the cylinder easily. Mark all above-ground and below-ground propane line locations as well as other utility line locations, and keep a list of them for future reference. Studying plants before putting them around the cylinder is vital. Knowing their characteristics, such as growth rates, ultimate size and hardiness, can eliminate future issues.

Plant Choice

Correct plant choice is key to any successful landscape, but especially when trying to hide a utility item such as a propane tank. Upright evergreen shrubs with a thick branching structure can provide year-round cover and act as a backdrop for any flowering plants you may want to plant in front of them. Plants with thorns must be kept further from the cylinder to ensure employees have protected access to the cylinder.

Space Requirements

Spacing of plants around a propane tank impacts the landscape’s aesthetic beauty and the cylinder’s serviceability. Because plants grow, it’s very important to know a plant’s mature size before planting. Place shrubs far enough from the cylinder to allow simple access into the tank for maintenance and filling. A rule of thumb when planting is to space shrubs so that when they are mature they will be around 3 or 4 feet apart from each other and about 5 feet from the cylinder.

Other Factors

Although one objective of putting shrubs about a propane tank is to beautify an otherwise unsightly attribute, safety should also be kept in mind. Placing shrubs too near a propane tank, especially shrubs with dry leaf, such as ornamental grasses, may increase the site’s fire danger. The use of an organic or inorganic mulch around 5 or 6 feet between the cylinder and all landscaping may create a fire break before flames could get to the tank.

See related