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Poland's first Tiny Forest - much more than just a forest!

On 23 and 24 October 2021, the time had finally come. After months of planning, Poland's first Tiny Forest was planted in collaboration with the Polish foundation Fundacja Perspektywa. More than 50 people from Germany and Poland planted the 1500 square metre area in the small village of Rozwarowo, near the Polish Baltic Sea, in glorious autumn weather.


It took almost a whole year from the initial planning discussions to the realisation of the project. When Nikolaus and Agnieszka approached us with their request to plant Poland's first Tiny Forest, we were immediately inspired by their enthusiasm and commitment and were delighted to be able to support the young foundation in its endeavours. This Tiny Forest was to become a flagship project to introduce many more people to the Miyawaki method and get the movement rolling in Poland, too. We therefore decided together to start directly with a relatively large area, which was to be planted in several stages so that as many people as possible could participate in the project. A colourful group of different people was invited to take part in the planting activities. Both German and Polish citizens were to take part in order to symbolise the cross-border relevance of nature conservation and renaturation and to promote cultural exchange. We also wanted people from different generations to plant together, because the preservation of our beautiful nature is a concern that affects us all.


The soil is being ameliorated


In mid-October, after extensive planning, we were finally able to start preparing the soil. Straw and various types of compost were worked into the compacted and depleted clay soil with the help of two excavators. Many thanks at this point to our much-loved excavator driver "Mister Wlodek", who did a great job! Even during these days, it became clear that the project was about much more than just planting a forest. The incredible hospitality of the people from Fundacja Perspektywa, their impressive organisation and their motivation to lend a hand made the soil cultivation a very unifying experience. It took about a week before the area was ready to be planted.


Straw and compost are added to the soil


A few final preparations before planting!


One day before the first planting, we no longer have an overview of how many people will actually turn up. The interest is great and we have received numerous registrations.

 

In stormy weather, Lukas marks out the area.

 We are expecting between 50 and 200 people in total for the first planting weekend alone! The team is prepared for all eventualities and there is no shortage of catering and accommodation for our guests. While the last seedlings are being procured, we prepare the area for planting by dividing it into several quadrants with the help of strings. The plants also have to be unloaded and sorted.






A great success!





On the morning of 23 October, things finally get underway. At 10 a.m. on the dot, around 50 people have already gathered at the site and are waiting to be briefed. As hoped, it is a colourful group of young and old, Poles and Germans as well as people from the town and the village. Still slightly chilly on this cold morning, the guests are welcomed and given an introduction to the Miyawaki method. When the people start planting a little later, the heavens open and from then on we are blessed with gloriously sunny autumn weather.

 

Over the course of two days, our hard-working helpers put a total of 3,000 young trees and shrubs in the ground. As Lukas emphasised at the beginning, they do this with an extra portion of love!

 

The event is a huge success for everyone involved. We experience many wonderful moments in which people meet, help each other, form independent working groups and take on responsibility. In the evening, we all sit around the fire together, swap stories and reflect on what we have experienced. The project has shown us how much more the Tiny Forest movement is about than just planting trees. It's about overcoming boundaries and working together for a future worth living in harmony with nature. The commitment to our planet unites us and gives us hope, which so many people lack in these times.

 

We would like to thank Agnieszka, Magda, Nikolaus and Marek from the bottom of our hearts for their commitment to making this project a reality. Now we hope that our campaign gets a lot of attention and that as many imitators as possible will be found to plant their own Tiny Forest in the future!

 

Your team from Miya e.V.



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