The Miyawaki method of afforestation, which has revolutionised the concept of urban afforestation by turning backyards into mini-forests, is to come up on the government office premises, residential complexes, school premises, and puramboke land.
The government intervention comes in the wake of the highly successful technique, pioneered by Japanese botanist Akira Miyawaki, executed in the State by individuals to increase the green cover in urban and semi-urban areas.
The Forest Department is the nodal agency in the State. To take the initiative forward, each department had been asked to nominate nodal officers in the State and district levels. Even departments such as Port and Hydrographic Survey have stepped in and designated nodal officers. The departments have been asked to formally issue orders.
By promoting natural vegetation on land destroyed by natural calamities and man-induced mistakes along the coastline of Japan, Miyawaki managed to raise mini-forests. The replication of the model across Kerala, which has suffered floods, landslips and soil erosion, assumes significance with the Rebuild Kerala initiative on. The Miyawaki afforestation method has been adopted in 15 places with the support of the Nature’s Green Guardians Foundation (NGGF), an NGO. Developing each cent under the Miyawaki method is estimated to cost around ₹1 lakh.
The Forest Department has taken the first step already and has adopted the technique at Valavatti, near the Neyyar dam, in the capital, Nedumbassery in Ernakulam, and Mudikkode in Thrissur district. It is possible to grow a variety of native species in as little a space as 600 sq ft. Nature lovers have evinced interest in the model.
City-based nature lover M.R. Hari has converted his two-acre plot in the suburbs into a mini-forest to spearhead the initiative. It was on January 2 last year that Mr. Hari and others developed a Miyawaki forest on five cents on the Kanakakkunnu palace premises for Kerala Tourism with 426 saplings belonging to 120 species.