Urbem’s second “fast forest” in Portugal

One year ago, URBEM’s team was celebrating the planting of their first fast forest!

URBEM’s forests are planted according to the Miyawaki Method, which uses a very high density of native plant species. Their rapid growth and carbon storage potential are two popular characteristics of this method.

URBEM’s first plot of 300 sqm was a test run meant to help the team adjust the protocol for the second forest. Much was learned in one year and above all, a nice community was formed.

In late January 2023, the team got together again and transformed an unmanaged plot into what soon will become a 1.165 sqm forest.

Since the planting took place, the group has been gathering in the forest to take care of it. De-weeding and mulching are some of the activities done by volunteers to help the forest thrive.

There is also a dedicated group of volunteers who is responsible for monitoring the growth and survivability of the plants in the forest. The objective? To learn about the efficacy and suitability of this planting method in the Portuguese scenario and climate. This way, more forests can be planted in other parts of the country and the world.

The Environmental Studies’ team has been tagging and identifying all plants at the plot, to enable the monitorization of their growth.

Rozy, who has been responsible for a lot of the planning and execution of this project, dedicated this second forest to “the volunteers from all around the world – 18 nationalities and still counting – who have helped make this project a reality.”

Sasi Kandasamy, Urberm’s founder, shares the following: “protests and raising awareness about climate change is important but I love that URBEM gives everyone an opportunity to take some actual positive action in our own cities to protect the environment. And in the process, we get to meet a great tribe of people, learn from each other, and have fun!”

The group believes that “even if one forest in the middle of Lisbon cannot halt climate change, it has the potential to change people’s mindsets, to bring them closer together and closer to nature. That’s its true power.” – Sasi

Cath, a volunteer helping URBEM with their biological studies shares that:

“I support any efforts at all to promote biodiversity whether in urban or rural areas. URBEM hopefully assists in this and raises awareness of the urgent need for Nature – the very foundation of life – to have a significant and protected place in our land- and cityscapes. The age and nationality range of volunteers I have worked alongside demonstrates that a growing number of people are embracing the chance to make a difference, offering a glimmer of hope for a more Nature-connected society.”

What a positive note to close upon.

Thank you for your work and inspiring story. We hope to learn more about creating urban forests from you!

If you want to stay updated on URBEM’s activities, follow them on Facebook and Instagram.


Why:These trees are dedicated to volunteers from all around the world, 18 nationalities and still counting, who have helped make this project a reality. It is like the world getting together for the common good of making Lisbon, a city that has accepted all of us from different parts of the world with open arms, a greener place. It is one way of giving back to nature, to Lisbon and to the world.
Where:Lisbon, Potugal
When:January 13, 2023
What kind of Trees:Quercus robur (Carvalho alvarinho) Quercus faginea (Carvalho Português) Quercus suber (Sobreiro) Quercus coccifera (Carrasco) Ceratonia siliqua (Alfarrobeira) Celtis australis (Lodão-bastardo) Olea europaea (Oliveira) Laurus nobilis (Loureiro) Viburnum tinus (Folhado) Phillyrea latifolia (Aderno-de-folhas-largas) Prunus spinosa (Abrunheiro Bravo) Chamaerops humilis (Palmeira Vassoura) Rhamnus alaternus (Sanguino-das-sebes) Pistacia lentiscus (Aroeira) Erica arborea (Urze-arbórea) Erica lusitanica (Urze-lusitana) Coronilla glauca (Pascoinhas) Rosmarinus officinalis (Alecrim) Lavandula stoechas (Rosmaninho) Lavandula viridis (Alfazema de flôr branca) Cistus albidus (Roselha grande) Cistus crispus (Roselha) Cistus monspeliensis (Sargaço) Ruta graveolens (Arruda) Pervinca adiformis (Pervinca) Fragaria vesca (Morango silvestre) Rosa canina (Rosa Canina) Rosa sempervirens (Roseira Brava) Lonicera etrusca (Madressilva mediterrânica) Lonicera periclymenum (Madressilva das boticas)
How many:


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