Tiny forests MINI team.

MINI and Earthwatch launch Ireland’s first Tiny Forest.

MINI Ireland together with conservation charity Earthwatch Europe, have launched the first “Tiny Forest” Initiative in Ireland at the Tolka River Project, a community-based rehabilitation programme in Co. Dublin. Close to 600 indigenous trees have been planted in a 195m2 space, the same size as a tennis court.

Green MINI cooper at Tolka River Project location

The aim of this partnership with Earthwatch is to raise awareness for local environmental projects and strengthen community bonds. Green spaces provide a place where people can learn about nature as well as exercise, relax and reduce stress levels and is the reason why the Tolka River Project centre and was chosen as an ideal location.

Like the all-electric MINI, “Tiny Forests” are remarkable due to their enormous efficiency in a small spaces: 600 indigenous trees are planted especially close to each other on the area of a tennis court and allowed to grow in a completely natural way. The result: up to 30 percent more density, up to ten times faster growth and up to thirty times better absorption of carbon dioxide. This, in turn, will attract more than 500 animal and plant species over the next three years and transform the "Tiny Forest" into an accessible mini-ecosystem. A range of locally-sourced indigenous trees are being used in the project including, Silver birch, Alder, Hazel, Hawthorn and Gorse. This mixture of different native trees will grow to create the natural layers of a forest.

Of course, using small spaces creatively and challenging the status quo is something that MINI has firmly anchored in its DNA for more than 60 years. This is the third project for MINI having already established Tiny Forest initiatives in its Plants in Oxford and Swindon over the past two years.

Sharing knowledge, inspiring people.

"Tiny Forests provide rich opportunities for connecting young and old alike with the environment and sustainability," explains Louise Hartley, Tiny Forest Officer at Earthwatch Europe: "It’s vital that we give people the knowledge and skills to protect our natural world and inspire them to take positive action. We are delighted to be working with MINI Ireland and bringing the first Tiny Forest to Ireland with the help of the local community. 

"MINI are really excited to bring the Tiny Forest movement to Ireland with Earthwatch and we hope that the local community enjoy the benefits of this programme. Our shared values of sustainability and bringing people together is what makes this such a great partnership, this project brings to life what our Big Love Strategy is all about," says Julie Bothwell Head of Sales and Marketing for MINI Ireland.

Thanks to the active support of clients from the Tolka River Project and residents of Mulhuddart, Earthwatch will collect a lot of data in the "Tiny Forest" over the coming years to learn more about topics such as carbon absorption, thermal comfort, biodiversity, and the social benefits of such green spaces in an urban area. The focus is always on cooperating with local institutions.

Mark Donnelly holding a sprout and shovel
Group of people planting trees

Earthwatch Europe.

Earthwatch is an environmental charity with science at its heart. They drive the change needed to live within our means and in balance with nature. We do this by:

  • Connecting people with the natural world
  • Monitoring the health of our natural resources
  • Informing the actions that will have the greatest positive impact

For more information visit earthwatch.org.uk