Miyawaki Forest – Cambridge, MA
Our Miyawaki Forest at Danehy Park in North Cambridge was planted successfully on September 25 with the help of many fantastic volunteers. The forest, which is the first example of a Miyawaki Forest in Cambridge and in the Northeast US, was the site of a fantastic gathering. It was wonderful to see the community come together in the spirit of restoration. Read more about the forest from our partners at SUGi, click through the resources at the bottom of this page, check out the first photos of the planting below, and stay tuned for more photos, videos, and updates to come!
About the Forest
The Miyawaki Forest is an ultra dense, biodiverse pocket forest that recreates the complexity of natural forests and the relationships and processes that help them grow strong and resilient. By giving home to a vast array of native species, they boost the biodiversity of the area and nurture pollinators, supporting and restoring ecosystems. They sequester carbon in the soil, reduce air pollution and soil contamination, improve water absorption to buffer against flooding and erosion, and cool the surrounding area to mitigate the urban heat island effect.
They also create a living classroom for people and communities to learn about native ecology, engage in stewardship, and experience the interconnectedness of the natural world. Read more about the Miyawaki method and its history and examples in the links at the bottom of this page.
It has been so moving to see the enthusiasm for this project from individuals and organizations here and elsewhere. In addition to stewarding the Danehy Park Miyawaki Forest in the coming years, we are imagining what comes next for the city of Cambridge, surrounding communities in metro-Boston, and cities and towns across the country and world. This forest, which was the first in Cambridge and in the entire Northeast USA, will certainly not be the last.
To volunteer for ongoing maintenance at the Danehy Park Miyawaki Forest, stay tuned to this page. Weeding will begin in Spring of 2022, and more sign-up information will be posted soon.
Miyawaki Forest Links and Resources
- The story of the Danehy Park Miyawaki Forest from our partners at SUGi
- The Cambridge DPW announcement on the Danehy Park Miyawaki Forest
- An interview with Boston.com on the Danehy Park Miyawaki Forest
- Our Miyawaki guide, Ethan Bryson, and his Natural Urban Forests website
- Article by our Compendium Editor, Hannah Lewis, in The Guardian
- The SUGi Project, which has several examples of Miyawaki forests around the world
- Afforestt, a service provider in India for creating natural, wild, maintenance free native forests
- About the late Dr. Akira Miyawaki and the history of his approach to forests
- An interview from Atmos about Dr. Miyawaki and the Miyawaki method
- A brief how-to for a Miyawaki forest
- A reflection on the Danehy Park Miyawaki Forest for the Bio4Climate blog
- A video interview on the Danehy Park Miyawaki Forest from AccuWeather
- Some articles in our July 2020 issue of the Compendium (search on “Miyawaki”)
To our forest maker Ethan Bryson, to Andrew Putnam and Cambridge Urban Forestry, to SUGi, and to Marylee Jones, her mother Marlene and daughter Joelle, and to Kat Livingston.
Thanks to all our volunteers and team leaders, and all those who supported this project!
Check out some photos of the site preparation and early process: