Welcome to Pocket Forests! We want to help your school or community create a native pocket of biodiversity on your doorstep. Collaborate with friends, teachers and pupils to bring a forest to your school. Find out more about how it works.
- Ashe Conrad-Jones and Catherine Cleary, co-founders of Pocket Forests
A Pocket Forest is a small area of densely planted native trees, shrubs and wildflowers. We aim to bring a forest ecosystem to the heart of towns and cities. We work with communities in two stages: 1. In our first workshop we help people to prepare the soil using repurposed waste materials. 2. In our second workshop we return to plant young native trees and s...
A Pocket Forest is a small area of densely planted native trees, shrubs and wildflowers. We aim to bring a forest ecosystem to the heart of towns and cities. We work with communities in two stages: 1. In our first workshop we help people to prepare the soil using repurposed waste materials. 2. In our second workshop we return to plant young native trees and shrubs and seed around the edge with native wildflower seeds. Pocket Forests also supply a poster detailing the core species; a tree maintenance booklet and 2 signs for the forest explaining soil preparation and the finished stage.
A Pocket Forest is planted in an area of 50square metres (roughly a quarter of a tennis court). We plant 150 native trees and shrubs using at least 12 different species. The ground layer is made up of Irish wildflowers grown from wild Irish seed.
Pocket Forests are inspired by Japanese botanist Akira Miyawake. His development of Miyawake-style forests combines densely planted young native trees and shrubs to mimic forest conditions in urban settings. This method produces fast growing multi-layered forests which enables people who plant them to enjoy the fruits of their labour sooner. Planting diverse species helps create biodiverse habitat for birds, insects and mammals (including humans!) in the urban areas where they are most lacking.
Pocket Forest allows communities to reconnect with nature, empowers people to create healthy resilient habitats using recycled waste materials and native plants.
As part of the Microsoft Dublin Community Challenge you can get funding of €250 which covers the cost of tools to prepare the ground, plant and maintain your Pocket Forest in your school or an area that will benefit your local community. The Pocket Forest team will support you throughout the process from site selection to soil preparation and planting.
The Pocket Forest Initiative has brought so much joy to our whole school community and really opened all of our eyes to the importance of increasing the biodiversity in the area and just how easily this can be achieved in even the smallest plots of land. From the physical process of preparing the soil to the many years ahead that we will be able to enjoy the space we collectively created, we have all benefited from reconnecting with the natural world and all its wonders thanks to the project with Pocket Forests.