Recently, Prime Minister Narendra Modi dedicated Maze Garden and Miyawaki Forest in Ekta Nagar, Gujarat.
- The Miyawaki Forest is named after the technique developed by Japanese botanist Dr Akira Miyawaki to plant saplings of various species close to each other to develop a dense urban forest.
- Through the Miyawaki method, a forest can be developed in just two to three years while it takes at least 20 to 30 years through the traditional method.
- The growth of plants is ten times faster using this method and as a result, the forest developed is thirty times denser.
- The Miyawaki Forest will include a Native Floral Garden, Timber Garden, Fruit Garden, Medicinal Garden and a Digital Orientation Centre.
Miyawaki Principles of Natural Forest –
- No defined spacing between plants;
- Soil enrichment must be done before taking up plantation;
- High density planting of herbs, shrubs and tree species up to 10,000 plants per hectare;
- Further supplementation of site by seed dibbling of native species;
- Watering should be done at least until the next rainy season after planting;
- Mulching should be done after planting to suppress weed and prevent evaporation;
- Watering is to be done with tankers and pipe sprinkling instead of flood irrigation;
- Periodical weeding is to be done till the end of next rainy season after planting;
- Huge crown developing tree species like Ficus should be avoided;
- Seedlings or saplings of all sizes can be planted to give the plantation a 3-tier look of a natural forest;
- Analysis of soil properties, done in advance so as to choose the best soil enrichment practices; and
- Except weeds no other naturally grown species shall be removed from the plots.
About the Maze garden –
Sprawling over three acres with a pathway of 2,100 metres, this is the largest maze garden in the country. It has been designed in the shape of a ‘Shriyantra’, which is believed to bring positive energy to the place.