Formerly barren ground surrounding the Santa Maria warehouse for the Foodbank of Santa Barbara County became a landscape of drought-tolerant plants Friday through the efforts of volunteers from some of the organization’s supporters.
More than a dozen volunteers from cannabis cultivators Central Coast Agriculture and Busy Bee Organics as well as the Good Farmers, Great Neighbors spent more than two hours installing the new landscape.
Laurel Alcantar, senior development manager, said the cannabis growers and coalition sponsored the Foodbank last year and sponsored the beautification as well.
Alcantar said the warehouse previously had a landscape of high-water-using plants, but those were removed in preparation for replanting.
“This is a more drought-tolerant landscaping,” Alcantar said. “I don’t have exact numbers, but this should save us some on irrigation.”
The 40 new plants volunteers installed included Coleonema pulchellum, commonly known as Breath of Heaven, and Nandina domestica Gulf Stream, sometimes called Heavenly Bamboo.
Lavandula dentata, a popular Central Coast perennial more commonly known as French lavender, also was planted across the front of the warehouse at 490 W. Foster Road.
Each of the plants was hand-watered using buckets, but volunteers returned over the weekend to install irrigation lines.
Mulch will be added this week as the final step in the landscape process, the volunteers said.
“We’re really excited for this upgrade to our North County site and grateful to our community partners for making it possible,” said Judith Smith-Meyer, marketing communications manager for Foodbank.