Sustainable & Connected: Santa Monica’s new microforests are a model for restoring nature in urban areas

April 24, 2024 3:37 PM
by Amanda Grossman

In honor of Earth Week, April 22 - 27, the city of Santa Monica is about to gain two new microforests!

Microforests are fast-growing, low maintenance, tiny preserves that mimic natural woodlands. They are planted in small spaces in urban areas and feature a variety of densely planted native plants that form layers of vegetation, from underbrush to flowering shrubs to understory and shade-giving overstory trees.

These self-sustaining ecosystems have numerous benefits, from capturing stormwater and mitigating heat to sequestering carbon to improving biodiversity.

Thanks to the Malibu Foundation, in partnership with Santa Monica College (SMC) and the city of Santa Monica, this week we're seeing two microforests come to life in Santa Monica!

On Thursday, April 25, SMC unveiled a new microforest – the first one planted at a community college in the country. And on Saturday, April 27, the community will help plant the country’s first median microforest at the Olympic Boulevard median.

SMC’s microforest will also provide research experience to SMC biology students, who will evaluate the microforest’s growth, observe the effects of microbes in the soil, and see what insect and animal life the microforest attracts.

Learn about microforests, listen to speakers from SMC, the Malibu Foundation, and more, and be the first to check out these tiny, innovative ecosystems this weekend:

Olympic Boulevard Microforest Planting
Saturday, April 27, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Olympic Boulevard & 18th Street

Authored By

Amanda Grossman
Sustainability Analyst


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