The feasibility of Miyawaki Forest afforestation techniques in the UK context

Grantham Scholar Hanyu Qi researches a novel tree planting method – Miyawaki Forest Method – its application and peoples’ perspectives towards it in the UK context.

On being a Grantham Scholar

“The best thing about being a Grantham Scholar are the many opportunities to learn from different people from varied fields and to meet kind, lovely and excellent staff. For instance Jana (Centre Admin), Deborah (Centre Manager) and Claire (Comms) who are as helpful as they can be.”

The project

In the light of increasingly rapid climate change, there are serious environmental issues in many areas around the world. Forests are considered a crucial way to mitigate climate change, and have been gaining more and more attention.

My research interest is about climate change, ecology, forests/woodland, and their relationship to human well-being. Specifically to my project, the topic is: What is the potential trend in forest rewilding? The suitability of the MF method in the 21st century England/UK?

Miyawaki Forest Method

We focus on a novel tree planting method, Miyawaki Forest Method.

MFM is based on the theory of potential natural vegetation (PNV) and succession. It advocates using indigenous tree species to create native forests, which has the advantages of lower cost, less maintenance, shorter time to forest establishment, richer species and enables more carbon sequestration than traditional tree planting method once established.

But the MFM has not received much attention in the UK. So, this research is going to explore the suitability of the Miyawaki Forest Method in the UK and also peoples’ perceptions towards this method. I will also look at tree species selection in the current climate and for the changing future climate.

Current survey

I am launching a national survey about tree planting in the UK.

If you are a landscape architect, urban planner or designer, geographer and/or if you work in an industry related to ecology, climate change, tree planting or management etc. then please complete my survey here.

Or if have an interest in trees, you work in a friends’ group etc., or you are involved in green spaces in any way, please also consider filling in my survey.

You can use either mobile phone or laptop to complete it. The questionnaire should take around 15mins. Thanks a lot in advance!


The Grantham Centre at COP. Every year, we send Grantham Scholars to COP as official observers for the University of Sheffield. Doing so gives our people an opportunity to see how global climate change policy is made – or not – and to meet other sustainability experts. In 2022, Hanyu was one of the group who went to Egypt for COP27.



Dr Nicola Dempsey

Department of Landscape Architecture


Dr Ross Cameron

Department of Landscape Architecture