The new pocket forest on East Main Street in Ayer is now grown and, while the idea may seem small, the renewal effort is handling big ecological issues. The town of Ayer hopes the new pocket forest, located on a small piece of land near the Main Street railroad bridge, will be the first of many to spring up throughout the town. An official tour and picnic is set for Sept. 10. (COURTESY TOWN OF AYER)
AYER — The community will be getting together in September to take an official tour of the much-anticipated East Main Street Neighborhood Pocket Forest. Live music and food will accompany the tour of the pocket forest, located in the area of 16 East Main Street.
The tour, scheduled for Sept.10, 1-3 p.m., features a “community picnic,” catered by Markoh’s Wake & Bake, and live acoustic guitar for background atmosphere music.
“Learn all about and better understand the Ayer East Main Street Neighborhood Pocket Forest,” Alan Manoian, Ayer’s Community & Economic Development Director, said in a press release.
What is a pocket forest?
Pocket forests, or Miyawaki Forests, named after the late Japanese botanist Akira Miyawaki, are basically mini forests that are compact enough to wedge into small spaces that are decidedly unbeautiful now.
They offer a doable, sustainable way for cities and towns to combat climate change at a local level and spruce up neighborhoods that could use a helping hand with a green thumb.
The goal is to make the streets more attractive, more livable, while contributing to a greener, more eco-conscious planet. Sidewalks are not the focus – trees are – and some pavement may have to go.
The project was made possible through a state grant and a working partnership that includes MassDevelopment, the Devens Enterprise Commission and Ayer’s Office of Community and Economic Development.
Sentinel & Enterprise correspondent M.E. Jones contributed to this article.