Hedgerow benefits align with food production and sustainability goals
Restoring hedgerows, or other field edge plantings, to provide habitat for bees and other beneficial insects on farms is needed to sustain global food production in intensive agricultural systems. To date, the creation of hedgerows and other restored habitat areas on California farms remains low, in part because of a lack of information and outreach that addresses the benefits of field edge habitat, and growers' concerns about its effect on crop production and wildlife intrusion. Field studies in the Sacramento Valley highlighted that hedgerows can enhance pest control and pollination in crops, resulting in a return on investment within 7 to 16 years, without negatively impacting food safety. To encourage hedgerow and other restoration practices that enhance farm sustainability, increased outreach, technical guidance, and continued policy support for conservation programs in agriculture are imperative.
Author(s): Long, RF; Garbach, K; Morandin, LA
Journal: California Agriculture