How The Miyawaki Method is Regreening The World

A mushroom sprouts amongst fallen pine needles in the forest. Photo by João Vítor Heinrichs.
A mushroom sprouts amongst fallen pine needles in the forest. Photo by João Vítor Heinrichs.

“Act your age!” is definitely not what a Miyawaki method tiny forest wants to hear. You’d be better off telling it that it’s so big for its age—that’s a real compliment for these forests.

Why the Miyawaki method rocks

Able to grow up to 10 times faster than their counterparts, forests planted with the Miyawaki method are part of a worldwide “sweeping movement that is transforming dusty highway shoulders, parking lots, schoolyards and junkyards,” according to a recent article from the New York Times (NYT).

  • Japan boasts thousands of these forests and many other countries, like India, have hundreds. Dozens of other locations, including Lebanon, Cameroon, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom have also planted successful forests.

Putting the method into practice

One such forest in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA, which is only two years old, is demonstrating the incredible power of this reforestation method. According the NYT:

  • “Its aspens are growing at twice the speed normally expected, with fragrant sumac and tulip trees racing to catch up. It has absorbed stormwater without washing out, suppressed many weeds and stayed lush throughout last year’s drought. The little forest managed all this because of its enriched soil and density, and despite its diminutive size: 1,400 native shrubs and saplings, thriving in an area roughly the size of a basketball court.”

Miyawaki offers hope

As we work towards a healthier, cooler planet, tiny forests offer a lot of hope. Their fast and healthy growth helps to cool urban environments that might otherwise be an endless sea of concrete, and provide a habitat for all kinds of wildlife. And of course, the diversity and strength of vegetation allows for carbon sequestration.

Dig Deeper: Check out the full New York Times article for more examples of how Miyawaki method forests are transforming Earth.

“The forest is the root of all life; it is the womb that revives our biological instincts, that deepens our intelligence and increases our sensitivity as human beings.” Dr. Miyawaki

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