38 Photos - Jun 19, 2008
Photo: Vetiver hedge runs for over 2,000 lineal feet along the top of the coastal bluff. The bluff edge has held since the establishment of the Vetiver despite heavy rains.Photo: Vetiver hedge at top of vertical coastal bluff stabilizing the edgePhoto: Vetiver hedge runs for over 2,000 lineal feet along the top of the coastal bluff. The bluff edge has held since the establishment of the Vetiver despite heavy rains. Note the poor quality and shallow soils. Apart from bluff stabilization this hedge makes a nice boundary to the path and keeps walkers safely away from the bluff edge.Photo: This coastal bluff was bare of vegetation and eroding and slumping badly with winter rainfall and wave attack. Vetiver was planted as a nurse crop allowing for better establishment of native species.Photo: n this photo you can make out some of the Vetiver but much of it is being shaded out by the larger plants . These are pruned twice annually.Photo: A close up showing Vetiver growing in poor conglomerate soil, stabilizing nearly vertical slopes while the shrubs/trees fill in .Photo: nother section of the bluff showing Vetiver with young salt tolerant shrubs growing in between the Vetiver rows . The Vetiver was burned by salt spray, but was not killed.Photo: A smaller vetiver planting in the Santa Barbara foothills. Rainfall runoff from the roofs and the deck visible at top of photo contributed to slope saturation. Note that vetiver, rather than competing with other plants, improves the microclimate between hedgerows, thus providing better conditions for plant growth.Photo: We created a system of paths stabilized by Vetiver and drylaid walls . The owners were able to grow their crops, and the Vetiver has eliminated both the potential damage from slippage and storm water, and at the same time provides cover for fauna such as birds and beneficial insects.Photo: This service road was being undermined by runoff during intense rainfall events in the Carpinteria foothills . The vetiver has completely stabilized the bank of the road. These thick vetiver hedges provide excellent habitat for local fauna, as well providing a home for birds and many beneficial insects. from a landscaping view it softens the edge of an otherwise rather stark road edge.Photo: Looking down one of the paths showing fruit trees , herbs , drylaid asphalt stabilized adobe walls, and Vetiver.  vetiver is a lovely landscaping plant, and in this instance provides privacy, and a habitat for birds, beneficial insects and other mamalsPhoto: The steep hillside behind this house in Santa Barbara was inaccessible to the owners . They wanted to grow fruit trees and vegetables but needed a way to protect the slope. They succeeded using the Vetiver System. Not only have they been able to plant trees and vegetables, but the house is now protected from damage from intense storm runoff and slope slippage. NOTE Vetiver improves the shear strength of soil by as much as 40%.Photo: Carpinteria foothill property. Slope cleared of native vegetation for wildland fire safety, and replanted with succulent Agaves, Aloes, and other fire resistant species. Vetiver was used to stabilize several large gully repairs and path with dry laid adobe wall.Photo: Detail of path with drylaid adobe wall stabilized by Vetiver. Note on this steep land vetiver acts as a living wall on the downside of the path.Photo: A large project planted in the Santa Barbara foothills in February, 2008Photo: Vetiver hedge directly above the channel to the bottom left. Above that the extensive slope which generates leaves and sediment. Carpinteria foothills.Photo: A large project planted in the Santa Barbara foothills in February, 2008Photo: In this photo you can see the jute netting in between the Vetiver rows and also small plants of Rhus integrifolia, Lemonade Berry , a California native.Photo: In this photo you can see the botanical gardens being protected in the background. The hedge which is now four years old has prevented damage to this slope.Photo: This steep south facing slope in Santa Barbara was perfect for growing bananas but not without Vetiver to create cross slope terraces for access and mulch and slope stabilization.Photo: A closeup of the level area above the hedge created by soil and litter accumulating behind the Vetiver hedgerow. Note unlike most other plants vetiver produces roots from higher up the stem and thus "grows" up along withe the natural terracing that occurs behind the hedgerow.Photo: Looking across slope from the end of a row. The Vetiver has prevented erosion and makes walking across the slope far easier. In other parts of the world (Senegal), vetiver has reduced root nematode attack on bananas as well as increasing yield .Photo: Looking up at the hillside from down below. Note the fruit trees sticking out above the Vetiver rows planted across the slope on the contour.Photo: In this photo you are looking at the top row of five or six Vetiver rows which are stabilizing a repaired landslide. The other rows are down slope just beyond the young fruit trees.  Note the vetiver shows no sign of competitiveness.Photo: Vetiver and Bamboo: Alphonse Karr' share screening and erosion control duties in Ventura, Ca.Photo: etiver hedge at toe of slope in Ventura, Ca. Functions as boundary hedge and keeps runoff and sediment out of roadway.etiver hedge at toe of slope in Ventura, Ca. Functions as boundary hedge and keeps runoff and sediment out of roadway.Photo: Until these vetiver hedges were planted on this slope at Santa Barbara City College , sediment flowed into the street with every significant storm. Note how the vetiver hedgerows improves the micro-climate of the site allowing native plants to establishPhoto: The Vetiver is functioning as a nurse plant for California plant species native to the site. The Vetiver has stabilized this difficult slope to a great degree.Photo: Drainage swale behind studio stabilized with a vetiver hedgerowPhoto: Vetiver hedge row protecting a drainage channel.Photo: Gophers were allowed to go unchecked on this project for a time. The hedge on the left and the gaps in the right hedge are examples of gopher damage.  Gopher damage can be a problem with young plants.Photo: Young Vetiver plants decimated by gophersPhoto: The horse riding trails and Vetiver hedges in Santa Barbara mentioned by John Greenfield's friend . The Vetiver was planted along the property line. Note the green dense growth in the center of the vetiver, this helps reduce the impact of fire.Photo: Hillside orchard of subtropical fruit trees with Vetiver terrace hedges to prevent soil erosion and slope destabilization.Photo: The Vetiver hedge on the left is stabilizing a low bank bodering the stone lined stormwater channel . Runoff from roads, farms, and nurseries during intense storms can now collect in this storm water channel without fear of overtopping or breaching.Photo: The Vetiver hedge runs for almost 800' along at the bottom of the orchard.Note the bare unprotected soil (with evidence of rilling) and the build up of sediment behind the hedgerow. Rainfall water that runs down these rills will be spread out behind the hedgerow (thus reducing hydraulic pressure spots that before the hedges might have caused slope slippage) and will seep through to move at a slower pace down the slope.Photo: 9"-12" of Avocado leaves on uphill side of a vetiver hedgerowPhoto: Detail of vetiver hedges on contour between subtropical fruit tree rows. Vetiver is trimmed twice yearly to control size and provide mulch.