Afforestt is a service provider for creating natural, wild, maintenance free, native forests. At Afforestt, the team works passionately on and off-site to provide the best solutions at the lowest possible cost. Started in January 2011, Afforestt is a for profit social enterprise on a mission to bring back the native forests. Their mission is to bring back the lost forests by creating them.
Afforest company grows urban forests that are maintenance-free, natural forests using afforestation methods from Japan and through some research of their own. And all these forests can be grown in just two years time. “Our forests grow ten times faster than trees planted conventionally, giving you the equivalent of a 100-year old natural forest in just ten years” says Shubhendu proudly. Afforestt can create dense forests with three-five trees per square metre, in areas as small as 1,000 square feet. And their maintenance-free, natural, bio-diverse forests cost only a tenth of making lawns. Afforestt uses only native species and works with 100% organic materials to mimic what nature creates.
Shubhendu is targeting people who prefer natural landscapes to manicured lawns or exotic trees, for the later does more harm than good to the environment. Afforestt is making urban forests in corporate campuses, around apartment buildings, hospitals, schools etc. Another plus about these urban forests is they can soak grey water coming out of sewage treatment plants, hence aiding purification of air and water. Shubhendu stimulus to startup was his stint as a volunteer in the afforestation team at his previous employer (Toyota) as well as his personal hobby of afforestation. “All this started when I met Dr. Akira Miyawaki, whose afforestation methodology (known as the Miyawaki Method) makes forests grow ten times faster. I was fascinated with his work and joined his team as a volunteer to cultivate a forest in our Toyota factory premises,” says Shubhendu. He subsequently started experimenting with modifications to the Miyawaki Method to reduce costs involved and to Indianise the method. “And this resulted in Afforestt’s method, which is a modification of the Miyawaki method using organic soil amenders,” explains Shubhendu.
The Miyawaki Technique is a unique methodology proven to work worldwide, irrespective of soil and climatic conditions. More than 3,000 forests have been successfully created worldwide using this methodology.
- Upto 30 times more dense compared to conventional plantations.
- At least 50-100 different native species planted in the same area.
- 30 times better noise and dust reduction.
- Upto 30 times better Carbon-dioxide absorption as compared to a monoculture plantation.
- Guaranteed growth of atleast 1 meter every year.
- A completely maintenance-free, wild and native forest after the first three years.
- A completely chemical and chemical fertiliser free forest that sustains itself and supports local bio-diversity.
In 2013, Afforestt has launched Urban Containerized Gardens (UCG) which will enable people to grow greens indoors and on rooftops. Talking about revenues, Shubhendu says, “We charge our clients for total area covered, which builds in our profit margin. For UCG we will charge as per the number of containers bought.” About UCG Shubhendu has invented a technology using which the containers that don’t have to be watered and maintained regularly. Afforestt is trying to keep gardens as maintenance free as possible. Their gardens are 100% organic and will be used to grow food as well. In the next six months Afforestt plans to launch Do-It-Yourself (DIY) kits for UCG where hobbyists can make their own indoor and rooftop gardens using the DIY kits.
This project is addresses to citizens groups, cooperatives, schools, associations and all the users of the city.
- dissemination of sustainable practices
- boosted the establishment of public policies of local governance on the environment
- improve biodiversity
- dissemination of knowledge and know how
- organization and management during the first period of afforestation