Hedgerows

CAFF’s farmscaping program assists growers and ranchers to plan and install hedgerows, windbreaks, filter strips, and other conservation plantings.

(Row one: perennial grassed filter strip and native plant hedgerow on a field edge in Watsonville, a hedgerow in San Juan Bautista, preparing for a planting day with middle school students. Row two: a grassed waterway with native plants and flowering sweet alyssum on the edge of a strawberry ranch in Salina, a grassed waterway to carry run-off from neighboring farm fields in Salinas, hedgerow plants attract beneficial insects and provide a barrier between farm fields and a lake in Watsonville)

Program Goals

- Reduction of sedimentation transport by using vegetative buffers to slow agricultural run-off into streams and waterways.
- Reduction of stream and waterway nutrient loading by increasing nutrient uptake with native plant hedgerows and buffer strips.
- Reduction of pesticide use by increasing beneficial insect populations with flowering hedgerows and increasing reliance on biological pest control methods.
- Increase overall ecological diversity by improving habitat for plant and animal species.
- Educate young people about farm ecology and biodiversity in partnership with CAFF’s Farm to School efforts

Resources

Hedgerows for California Agriculture. This manual will help you choose and care for regionally appropriate plants that attract beneficial insects and prevent erosion. It lists native plant nurseries and consultants/contractors specializing in hedgerow and other restoration projects.

Biodiversity: What it is, and How to Increase it on your Farm. This brochure was developed by the Wild Farm Alliance and CAFF defines Biodiversity as it relates to agriculture, and describes specific practices that farmers can implement to conserve biodiversity on their farms. On most farms, opportunities exist to accommodate habitat, native species and the larger landscape with few changes. Resources and cost-share opportunities listed.

Biodiversidad: ¿Qué es? Y Como Incrementarla En Su Rancho. The Spanish version of the Biodiversity brochure.

Farming with Food Safety and Conservation

Hedgerow Brochure: A short guide to hedgerow design, installation, and maintenance. Prepared by the Resource Conservation District of Santa Cruz County and CAFF.

Hedgerows: Enhancing Agroecological Services. A short brochure discussing the benefits of hedgerows.

Extending Hedgerow Systems in California Agriculture. CAFF’s results from Western SARE funding for building hedgerows.