By Vanessa Villalvazo /Kern Sol News
AC Foods is hosting a planting day — a community event where volunteers get the chance to help plant a triple hedgerow, and blueberries, learn about sustainability within agriculture and plant a California native plant — in the community of Delano on March 18 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
“People should expect to put in a little hard work. Participants will need to dig a hole to set the
plant in and then they will cover the hole after they put the plant in,” said Dakota Parker, sustainability coordinator at AC Foods. “They will also have the chance to talk to the farmers of AC Foods and the sustainability team. There will be water, snacks, shade, and restrooms will be available.”
AC Foods is looking for individuals who want to volunteer and dedicate their time to planting trees in the community. The volunteers will meet at County Line Road and Road 212, Delano CA.
“The volunteers will help plant a triple hedgerow of California native perennial forbs, shrubs, and
Trees. You will see us and the plants waiting for the volunteers,” said Parker.
Volunteers will need to bring a shovel, there will be a few extra on site but not enough for everyone. Gloves will not be required but could be useful.
“Hedgerows are plantings of dense vegetation along the edges of agricultural fields. They serve
as a windbreak as well to add biodiversity and create a habitat for beneficial insects and other
Wildlife,” said Parker. “Essentially, the volunteers are helping farmers implement sustainable agriculture within their community.”
Parker said the planting day is so important because it will help bring beneficial insects into the organic blueberry fields and can potentially help reduce pesticide use.
“Hedgerows also sequester carbon, reduce soil erosion, and can be an effective barrier against spray drift. A hedgerow is planted once and normally lives for at least 30 years,” said Parker.
AC Food employees including some of the farming team and the sustainability team will be there to interact with the volunteers. Volunteers will also get the chance to chat with their local farmers about planting native species and their benefits in agriculture.
“Volunteers can look forward to having a nice day outside networking and helping the
Environment. Volunteers should also be able to work in teams of four to six people and must have the ability to do physical work and respect all.