URBEM’s ‘fast forest’ project in Portugal

The city of Lisbon is excited about their new ‘fast forest’ of almost 2,000 native plant species!

Rozylyn Moreira (Rozy), the URBEM team coordinator, tells us about their project and trees planted:

“After months of planning, weeks of soil preparation, and five planting days, URBEM was able to plant almost 2,000 trees and shrubs in their starting plot of 300sqm. More than 150 volunteers attended the planting event, including 30 biology students from NEBFCUL and 70 scouts.”

Rozy explains that “The goal is to create native ‘fast forests’ inspired by the Miyawaki method, which stimulate human interactions and mitigate the effects of climate change. Using the Miyawaki method, our mini forest will absorb 265% more carbon than traditional reforestation methods. The mini forest will sustain thousands of native plants, providing habitats for many local species, and function as a set of community hubs for ecological education, art, theatre, and unique events!”

Urbem is an NGO consisting of Portuguese and foreign volunteers “who want to give back to the city that welcomed them.” Their team of professionals includes biologists, forestry engineers, native plant specialists, and others. Together, they work hard to ensure that the fast forest will be carefully delineated, adapted to the plot and local climate, and sustainable for the future.

The biology students who offered their helping hand to Rozy and her team, share their experience with us:

“Bit by bit, through minor changes and through small but big-minded projects like this one, we can promote a cascading effect of change.” – Diogo Rodrigues

“I see immense value in projects such as this. They allow us to give back to nature, which has given us so much. Besides, they also play a significant role in educating the general population” – Ariana Carolino

“Anyone can be of help and get involved in a planting project, despite their background. This shows that every one of us has a role in making the difference, in bringing Nature back to the city, which can contribute to a feeling of belonging and fulfillment.” – Inês Santos

Now, URBEM is already preparing for their next ‘fast forest!

Thank you for telling us about your exciting project and for your challenging work, URBEM team!

We are so happy to get to know you.

We look forward to hearing more about your project and seeing more inspiring and enthusiastic projects and people!

Do you want to know more about urban forests?
Have a look at this week’s blog article.


Why:URBEM is a social collective made up entirely of volunteers (26 people and growing!) who are working together towards a common vision of returning people to forests, the earth and each other
Where:Lisboa, Portugal
When:January 23, 2022
What kind of Trees:Arbóreo – Emergent Quercus robur Quercus faginea Quercus suber Ceratonia siliqua Fraxinus angustifolia Laurus nobilis Olea europaea Arbustivo – Canopy Viburnum tinus Quercus coccifera Arbutus unedo Prunus spinosa Rhamnus alaternus Pistacia lentiscus Crataegus monogyna Myrtus communis Phillyrea angustifolia Phillyrea latifolia Pyrus bourgeana Erica arborea Coronilla glauca
How many:1,072


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