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100 Mystical Names That Mean Forest: Boys & Girls

Unearth names that mean forest and get inspired by nature for your little one.

Who doesn’t love the magical qualities found in names that mean forest? Forest names have existed for thousands of years, while others may have escaped your attention. They come from a wide range of global cultures and are waiting for you to notice them.

Let our inviting list take you on a beautiful journey into nature. Learn the meaning(s) behind these names, plus their historical use and pronunciation. Our guide helps separate the forest from the trees so you’ll find the best choice for your woodland nymph.

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100 Cute Names Meaning Forest

Explore nature-happy names that mean forest for the free-spirited baby you’re expecting.


Abungu is a lesser-known name that means forest and is likely Kenyan in origin. It’s a forest-related name most people won’t recognize but may be related to the Abungura people found in Uganda and Rwanda.

  • Origin: African
  • Meaning: Of the forest
  • Pronunciation: Ah-BUNN-goo
  • Popularity: Abungu is very rare worldwide and mostly used in Kenya.
Earthy, Rare


Adoette comes from the Kiowa-Tanoan “adoeete,” meaning “large tree.” Kiowa is a Native language found in the American Southern Plains. Adoette also means “olive tree.”

  • Origin: Native American
  • Meaning: Forest
  • Pronunciation: Ah-duw-EYT-ah
  • Variations: Adoete, Adoett
  • Popularity: Adoette is extremely rare worldwide, with only one known occurrence in 2014 in South Africa.
Strong, Rare


Aiken also functions as a Scottish version of Atkin, made up of Adam, plus the diminutive suffix “-kin.” It appeared in Scotland as the surname Aitken but is an earthy choice for a nature-loving boy.

  • Origin: English, Gaelic
  • Meaning: Made of oak
  • Pronunciation: EY-Kihn
  • Variations: Aicken, Ayken
  • Popularity: Aiken is very rare worldwide and mainly used in Singapore.
Cute, Unique


Althea is an ancient Greek reference to trees known for their “healing power.” It comes from the Greek Althaea, based on “althos,” meaning “healing.” Althea was the mother of Meleager, a Greek mythological hero, and is the perfect guardian of your little girl’s forest.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Healer, wholesome
  • Pronunciation: Ael-THEE-aa
  • Variations: Altheya, Althia, Althya
  • Namesakes: Althea Gibson, an American tennis player and the first African American to win a Grand Slam title in 1956. Althea Braithwaite, an English children’s author known for Desmond the Dinosaur.
  • Popularity: Althea is rare worldwide, primarily used in the U.S., and ranked 206th in the Bahamas in 2014.
Ancient, Pretty


Amadahy is a Cherokee name meaning “forest water.” It uses the traditional symbols of forest trees to represent longevity and water to represent life.

  • Origin: Native American
  • Meaning: Of the forest’s water
  • Pronunciation: Ah-mah-DAY-Hiy
  • Variations: Amadahey, Amadahi, Amadahie, Amadahye
  • Popularity: Amadahy is extremely rare worldwide, with only two known occurrences in 2014, in Mexico and South Africa.
Earthy, Rare


Amaranth is taken from the Greek “amárantos,” meaning “unfading flower.” Amaranth is one of the most beautiful red flowers found in the forest. It’s tall and known for its delicious flavor when added to recipes.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Unfading
  • Pronunciation: Ah-mah-RAHNT
  • Variations: Amaranthe
  • Popularity: Amaranth is extremely rare worldwide, with 70 occurrences in 2014, mostly in the U.S. and India.
Unique, Rare


Aranya is the Sanskrit word for “forest” and is famous for the Araṇya-Kāṇḍa, a book of epic poetry by Ramayana, also referred to as “The Forest Episode.”

  • Origin: Thai, Sanskrit
  • Meaning: Wild forest
  • Pronunciation: Ah-RAAN-yah
  • Namesakes: Anchali Sirachaya (known as Aranya Namwong), a Thai actress and the runner-up of 1964 Miss Thailand. Aranya Johar, an Indian poet known for her spoken word in the movie Padman.
  • Popularity: Aranya is rare worldwide and mainly used in Thailand, where it ranked 400th in 2014.
Pretty, Traditional


Adrian is an Albanian form of Ardiaei, an ancient Illyrian clan’s name. It’s often confused with Adrian but is much more forest than the Adriatic Sea.

  • Origin: Albanian
  • Meaning: Future of the great forest
  • Pronunciation: AAR-diy-Aen
  • Variations: Ardjan, Ardijan
  • Namesakes: Ardian Rexhepi, a Kosovo Albanian-Swedish footballer for IK Brage. Ardian Turku, the mayor of Elbasan, Albania, between 2003 and 2004.
  • Popularity: Ardian is rare worldwide, primarily used in Indonesia, and ranked 71st in Albania in 2014.
Ancient, Unusual


Aspen derives from the Old English “æspe,” meaning “aspen tree” or “shaking poplar tree.” It dates back to the Greek Aspis, meaning “shield,” since the wood was made for constructing shields. Aspen, Colorado, is a famous U.S. destination for skiing through tall trees.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Aspen tree
  • Pronunciation: AEZ-Pehn
  • Variations: Aspin, Aspine, Aspyn, Aspyne
  • Namesakes: Aspen Ladd, an American mixed martial artist who competes as a Featherweight in the Professional Fighters League. Aspen Vincent, an American actress, and singer appearing in Nickelodeon’s As Told by Ginger.
  • Popularity: Aspen is rare worldwide and mainly used in the U.S., ranking 201st for girls in 2021.
Modern, Unique


Aveline means “wished for” in German. As a French surname, it means “from the hazelnut forest” for a specialized take on names that mean woods. Aveline is inspired by the Italian city of Avella, named after “avellana,” meaning “hazelnut.”

  • Origin: French, German
  • Meaning: Hazelnut forest
  • Pronunciation: AH-veh-Liyn
  • Variations: Avelina
  • Namesakes: Aveline de Forz, an English noblewoman married to Edmund Crouchback, the second son of Henry III of England.
  • Popularity: Aveline is very rare worldwide and primarily used in Tanzania.
Formal, Uncommon
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Aziza refers to a supernatural race in West African mythology. They’re forest dwellers, considered good luck for hunters. When spelled Asiza, it’s also an Asian surname often found in Indonesia.

  • Origin: African, Indonesian
  • Meaning: Forest spirit
  • Pronunciation: Ah-ZIY-Zaa
  • Variations: Azeeza, Azeezah, Azizah, Azzeza
  • Namesakes: Aziza Abdel-Halim, an Egyptian-Australian founder of the Muslim Women’s National Network Australia. Aziza Hussein, an Egyptian Paralympian athlete, and bronze medalist at the 2004 Summer Paralympics.
  • Popularity: Asiza is very rare worldwide and mostly used in DR Congo.
Mythical, Uncommon


Bambi comes from the Italian “bambino,” meaning “child,” It’s also used for a “baby girl” and ranked in the top 1,000 U.S. names from 1954 to 1964. The 1964 Disney classic Bambi is all the forest-inspired help you need for your baby girl.

  • Origin: Italian
  • Meaning: Baby deer
  • Pronunciation: BAEM-Bee
  • Variations: Bambie, Bamby
  • Popularity: Bambi is rare worldwide and mostly used in the U.S.
Cute, Unusual


Banashree is a name taken from Indian mythology, meaning “beauty of the forest.” It’s used for the spiritual goddess of the forest, who watches over all the green things.

  • Origin: Indian
  • Meaning: Forest queen
  • Pronunciation: BAA-nah-Shriy
  • Namesakes: Banashree Sengupta, an Indian singer, and winner of the Sangeet Sanman award in 2012.
  • Popularity: Banashree is rare worldwide and mainly used in India.
Mythical, Rare


Banjeet also means “mighty” and “victorious” in Hindi. It refers to the spirit called the “lord of the forest,” who rules over the wild.

  • Origin: Indian
  • Meaning: Victory of the forest
  • Pronunciation: Baan-JHIYT
  • Namesakes: Baljeet Singh, an Indian singer known for Gurbani & Kirtan styles of music.
  • Popularity: Banjeet is very rare worldwide and primarily used in India.
Mystical, Strong


Betulah refers to the “olive tree” in Hebrew and can mean “birch tree garden.” Betula Pendula is the scientific name for a silver birch or white birch tree and is also the name of a town in Colombia.

  • Origin: Native American
  • Meaning: Forest
  • Pronunciation: Beh-TUWL-Lyah
  • Variations: Betula
  • Popularity: Betulia is very rare worldwide, mostly used in Colombia, and ranked 956th in Honduras in 2014.
Pretty, Unique


Bitki means “plant” but is used in Turkish to mean “herb,” “vegetable,” and “wort.” It derives from “bitmek,” meaning “to grow” and “to sprout,” and describes things like herbal teas and vegetable oils.

  • Origin: Turkish
  • Meaning: Plant
  • Pronunciation: BEHT-Kee
  • Popularity: Bitki is extremely rare worldwide, with 23 known occurrences in 2014, in India.
Cute, Rare


Boice is based on the Old French “bois,” meaning “wood.” As a Scottish surname spelled Boyce, it was taken from the French del Bois for a residence by or near a wood.

  • Origin: French, Celtic
  • Meaning: Forest
  • Pronunciation: BOYSS
  • Variations: Boyce, Boys, Boyse, Boys
  • Popularity: Boice is rare worldwide, mainly used in the U.S., and ranked 723rd in the Isle of Man in 2014.
Traditional, Masculine


Briar specifically refers to a “thorny bush of wild roses” and “brambles.” It’s not often used for girls today but is famous as the main character of Sleeping Beauty called Briar Rose.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Thorny patch
  • Pronunciation: BRAEY-ehr
  • Variations: Brier, Bryer
  • Namesakes: Briar Patch, a place in the fictional Br’er Rabbit stories.
  • Popularity: Briar is very rare worldwide and primarily used in New Zealand, where it ranked 828th in 2014.
Mythical, Traditional


Brucie is a diminutive of Bruce and a medieval surname of a 14th-century Scottish king, Robert the Bruce. Brucie is also associated with Brix in Normandy, France, which means “the willow-lands.”

  • Origin: French
  • Meaning: Thick brush
  • Pronunciation: BRUW-See
  • Variations: Brucy, Brucey
  • Popularity: Brucie is very rare worldwide and mostly used in the U.S.
Cute, Informal


Burl can also mean a “tuft of wool” or is an occupational name for a “cupbearer” or “butler.” It experienced some popularity in the U.S. between the 1880s and 1930s, but is considered vintage today.

  • Origin: English, French
  • Meaning: Knotty wood
  • Pronunciation: BURHL
  • Variations: Berl, Burle, Byrle
  • Namesakes: Burl Ives, an American actor known for voicing the 1964 Christmas special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. Burl Barer, an American author known for writing about Simon Templar.
  • Popularity: Burl is rare worldwide and mainly used in the U.S.
Masculine, Strong
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Busby originated as one of the nicknames for someone from the English town of Busby. It means “village in the thicket” and refers to an old-style military headdress made of fur.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Shrub farm
  • Pronunciation: BUHZ-Biy
  • Variations: Busbey, Busbi, Busbie, Bussbi, Buzby
  • Namesakes: Busby Berkeley (born Berkeley Enos), an American film director known for fantastic on-screen performances.
  • Popularity: Busby is very rare worldwide, primarily used in the U.S., and ranked 378th in Tonga in 2014.
Formal, Unusual


In French, Caila means “from the forest.” As a Gaelic name, it’s taken from “caol,” meaning “slender and fair” – quite different from the dark forest.

  • Origin: French, Gaelic
  • Meaning: From the forest
  • Pronunciation: KAY-Lah
  • Variations: Caela
  • Namesakes: Caila Marsai Martin, an American actress appearing on the ABC series Black-ish.
  • Popularity: Caila is very rare worldwide and mostly used in Brazil.
Pretty, Uncommon


Caley may be influenced by Cailly in France or derive from Callius, a name used in ancient Rome. It’s also connected to the Gaelic Caoilainn, meaning “slim and fair.”

  • Origin: French, Gaelic
  • Meaning: From the forest’s heart
  • Pronunciation: KAY-Liy
  • Variations: Kaley, Kaleigh
  • Namesakes: Caley Chelios, an American sports commentator for the NHL Network.
  • Popularity: Caley is very rare worldwide and mainly used in the U.S.
Pretty, Informal


Calhoun comes from Colquhoun, an unusual Irish surname meaning “from the narrow woods.” It’s more common as an American surname and a city in Georgia.

  • Origin: English, Scottish
  • Meaning: From the narrow woods
  • Pronunciation: Kael-HHUWN
  • Variations: Calhoon, Calhoune, Callhoun
  • Popularity: Calhoun is very rare worldwide and primarily used in the U.S.
Formal, Strong


In its original Greek, Calliope means “she of the beautiful voice.” In Greek myth, she was known as the Muse of epic poetry. The Calliope bird is a hummingbird who loves living in all the lumber the forest provides.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Little star
  • Pronunciation: Kah-LAY-ah-Piy
  • Variations: Kalliope
  • Namesakes: Calliope Thorne, an American actress on the USA Network series Necessary Roughness. Calliope Tsoupaki, a Greek pianist and the Composer Laureate of the Netherlands since 2018.
  • Popularity: Calliope is very rare worldwide, mostly used in the U.S., and ranked 1,939th in Rwanda in 2014.
Feminine, Ancient


There are no popularity statistics for Canowicakte other than its Sioux origins. It also means “kills in the woods,” a crooked look at life in the forest for some.

  • Origin: Native American
  • Meaning: Forest hunter
  • Pronunciation: KAN-oh-Wee-CAK-teh
Rare, Strong


Cedar is the most literal of names meaning forest for a “cedar tree.” It originated with the Greek “kedros” and symbolizes strength and longevity only found in nature.

  • Origin: Latin, Greek
  • Meaning: Cedar tree
  • Pronunciation: SIY-Der
  • Namesakes: Cedar Paul, an English Secretary of the British Section of the Women’s International Council of Socialist and Labour Organizations from 1917 to 1919. Cedar Walton Jr., an American jazz pianist and drummer for The Jazz Messengers.
  • Popularity: Cedar is very rare worldwide and mainly used in the U.S., ranking 1,261st for boys in 2021.
Earthy, Unusual


Chan has many origins, including the Hebrew Channah, meaning “God is gracious.” Chan also means “snow” in Chinese. Its charming forest-themed meaning comes from Cambodia, referring to a tree with a lovely sweet smell.

  • Origin: Cambodian, Chinese
  • Meaning: Sweet-smelling tree
  • Pronunciation: CHAEN
  • Variations: Chano
  • Namesakes: Chan Thomas, an American author of The Adam and Eve Story: The History of Cataclysms.
  • Popularity: Chan ranked 1,010th worldwide, is primarily used in China, and ranked 790th for boys in the U.S. in 2023.
Traditional, Common


Cherry is a girl’s name that connotes the springtime cherry blossoms of a Japanese garden. It also means “dear one” and “darling” in French and is a common nickname for Cheryl.

  • Origin: American, French
  • Meaning: Cherry blossom
  • Pronunciation: CHEH-Riy
  • Variations: Cherri, Cherrie
  • Namesakes: Cherry Wilder, a New Zealand science fiction writer known for The Torin Trilogy. Cherry Jones, an American actress and a founding member of the American Repertory Theater.
  • Popularity: Cherry is rare worldwide and mostly used in the Philippines, ranking 143rd in 2014.
Pretty, Modern


Choilleich is one of the most mysterious of forest names with no facts about its Gaelic origins. It’s gender-neutral but appears more as a male name, yet it is otherwise all yours for the taking for your forest fantasy baby.

  • Origin: Gaelic
  • Meaning: Guards the forest
  • Pronunciation: Choiy-LEECH
Strong, Rare
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There’s not much to say about Codrin besides its literal Romanian meaning of “forest.” It derives from the Romanian “codru,” with the same meaning, and is rarely used outside Romania.

  • Origin: Romanian, Latin
  • Meaning: Forest
  • Pronunciation: COUW-Drihn
  • Namesakes: Codrin Țapu, a Romanian author focusing on the hypostases of personality.
  • Popularity: Codrin is very rare worldwide and mainly used in Romania, ranking 570th in 2014.
Masculine, Traditional


Coy also means “sky” and “taciturn” and is used as an English surname. The French “coi” is a nickname for a shy or quiet person, like one who prefers the company of the woods.

  • Origin: English, French
  • Meaning: Steady like the forest
  • Pronunciation: KOY
  • Variations: Coi
  • Namesakes: Coy Wire, an American TV sports correspondent for CNN since 2015. Coy Pugh, an American member of the Illinois House of Representatives from 1993 to 2001.
  • Popularity: Coy is rare worldwide and primarily used in the U.S., ranking 1,965th in 2014.
Cute, Unique


Daere can mean “fiend” in Welsh, possibly after Cú Roí mac Dáire, an Ulster king in Irish mythology. He’s known for his magical disguises, one of which may have been one of Daere’s other meanings: “oak tree.”

  • Origin: Welsh
  • Meaning: Oaktree
  • Pronunciation: Dera
  • Variations: DEHRE
  • Popularity: Daere is extremely rare worldwide, with 77 known occurrences in 2014, mostly in Nigeria.
Earthy, Rare


Dagwood means “bright wood” and “from the bright one’s forest.” Dagwood is best known as Blondie’s cartoon husband, but it still means “shining forest” with its English origins.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Shining forest
  • Pronunciation: DAEG-Wuhd
  • Variations: Dagwode
  • Popularity: Dagwood is extremely rare worldwide, with 19 known occurrences in 2014, mainly in the U.S.
Formal, Mystical


Daisy comes from the Old English “dægeseage,” meaning “day’s eye.” As a Victorian nickname for Margaret, Daisy became one of many famous flower names for girls filled with sunshine.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Day’s eye
  • Pronunciation: DAY-Ziy
  • Variations: Daisie, Daysie, Daisey
  • Namesakes: Daisy Danjuma, a Nigerian politician in the Nigerian Senate from 2003 to 2007. Daisy Ejang, a Ugandan singer and finalist in the 6th series of Tusker Project Fame.
  • Popularity: Daisy is uncommon worldwide, primarily used in the Philippines, and ranked 134th for girls in the U.S. in 2021.
Cute, Pretty


Dandak is lesser-known among woodland names but is recognizable as a kingdom in Hindu mythology. It’s also an alternative to the male Davudak.

  • Origin: Indian, Hindi
  • Meaning: Forest
  • Pronunciation: DAAN-Dak
  • Popularity: Dandak is extremely rare worldwide, with 43 known occurrences in 2014, in Indonesia and India.
Earthy, Masculine


Defne is a very popular Turkish alternative to Daphne and is a district in the Hatay Province of Turkey. Defne also means “laurel tree” and isn’t nearly as well-known outside of Turkey as it is for females who reside there.

  • Origin: Turkish
  • Meaning: Bay tree
  • Pronunciation: DAEF-niy
  • Namesakes: Defne Samyeli, a Turkish TV presenter of the TV program Defne Her şey Bambaşka on ATV.
  • Popularity: Defne is very rare worldwide, mostly used in Turkey, and ranked 1,640th in Northern Cyprus in 2014.
Feminine, Common


Diana is best remembered for the Roman goddess Diana. The root “dyeus” means “to shine” or “sky,” while “diwio” means “deity,” perfect for the goddess of both sky and forest (and the hunt).

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: Goddess of the forest
  • Pronunciation: Daey-AEN-ah
  • Variations: Dianna, Dyana, Dyanna
  • Namesakes: Diana Ross, an American singer of The Supremes group. Diana, Princess of Wales (born Diana Spencer), the first wife of King Charles III and mother of Prince William and Prince Harry.
  • Popularity: Diana ranked 118th worldwide and is mainly used in the U.S., ranking 234th for girls in 2023.
Strong, Mythical


Ebony was first the Egyptian word for black wood. Ebony is known for its rich black color, which is why it’s a modern favorite among African-American women. Ebony peaked in the U.S. for girls’ names between 1971 and 2005 but still has the cool factor today.

  • Origin: Latin
  • Meaning: Deep black wood
  • Pronunciation: EH-beh-Niy
  • Variations: Ebbony, Ebonee, Eboney, Eboni, Ebonie
  • Namesakes: Ebony Flowers, an American writer, and winner of the 2017 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Awards.
  • Popularity: Ebony is rare worldwide, primarily used in the U.S., and ranked 883rd in Australia in 2014.
Modern, Unique


Elah goes back to the Hebrew “ela,” meaning “terebinth tree.” It’s also the Aramaic word for God, “E’-lah.” Elah can also refer to an elm or oak tree, which is as ancient as names that mean forest get.

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: Oak tree
  • Pronunciation: EH-Lah
  • Popularity: Elah is rare worldwide and primarily used in Indonesia, where it ranked 1,424th in 2014.
Ancient, Mystical
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Elswyth means “strong temple” as well. Ealhswith was the 1st-century wife of King Alfred the Great, who might have influenced this elegant name.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Elf from the willow trees
  • Pronunciation: EHLZ-Wihth
  • Variations: Elswith, Elswithe, Elswythe
  • Namesakes: Helen Beebe (pen name Elswyth Thane), an American romance writer known for her “Williamsburg” fictional series.
  • Popularity: Elswyth is extremely rare worldwide, with just seven known occurrences in 2014, mainly in the U.S.
Formal, Unusual


Faunus is the scientific term for “animal.” In Roman mythology, Faunus is the god of nature, depicted as half human and half goat. He rules over the forests and projects the animal flocks, plains, and fields.

  • Origin: Latin
  • Meaning: God of forests
  • Pronunciation: FAON-ahs
  • Variations: Faunos, Fawnus
  • Popularity: Faunus is extremely rare worldwide, with just six known occurrences in 2014, primarily in the U.S.
Ancient, Rare


Feronia was an ancient Roman goddess of the woods and the groves. It comes from the Latin “ferus,” representing the woodlands and freedom. Feronia is also the name of a wood-apple plant.

  • Origin: Latin
  • Meaning: Forest goddess
  • Pronunciation: Fih-ROW-niy-Ah
  • Variations: Feronea, Feroneah, Feroniah, Feroniya, Feroniyah
  • Popularity: Feronia is extremely rare worldwide, with 60 known occurrences in 2014, mostly in Indonesia.
Ancient, Feminine


Firth is a Scottish term for an “estuary of the sea,” especially between England and Scotland. It derives from the Middle English “firthe,” meaning “frith wood” and “hunting ground,” where the animals roam.

  • Origin: English, Scottish
  • Meaning: Woodland
  • Pronunciation: FERTH
  • Variations: Firthe, Fyrth, Fyrthe
  • Popularity: Firth is extremely rare worldwide with 84 known occurrences, mainly in the U.S.
Traditional, Unique


Forester is more traditionally a surname for an “officer in charge of a forest,” i.e., a forest ranger. It’s based on the Old French “forestier,” meaning “forest dweller,” for anyone who makes his living in the woods.

  • Origin: English, French
  • Meaning: Forest ranger
  • Pronunciation: FAOR-ehs-Ter
  • Variations: Forrester, Forster
  • Namesakes: Forester Augustus Obeyesekere, the Sri Lankan Speaker of the State Council of Ceylon from 1934 to 1935.
  • Popularity: Forester is very rare worldwide and primarily used in the U.S.
Traditional, Masculine


Fraser is taken from the Latin “fragula” and French “fraisier,” also meaning “strawberry plant.” It ranked 1,358th among U.S. surnames in 2010. When spelled Frazer, it’s an English spelling of the Gaelic Frasach, meaning “the generous or fruitful one.”

  • Origin: French, Scottish
  • Meaning: Of the forest men
  • Pronunciation: FRAY-Sher
  • Variations: Fraeser, Fraiser, Frasier, Frazer, Frazier
  • Namesakes: Fraser Anning, an Australian senator for Queensland from 2017 to 2019. Fraser Barron, an officer of the Royal New Zealand Air Force and a pilot in World War II.
  • Popularity: Fraser is rare worldwide and mostly used in Scotland, ranking 169th in 2014.
Earthy, Common


Garwood also means “from the fir forest” and “evergreen forest.” As a surname, it first appeared in Norfolk, England, where the Garwoods were considered the lords of the manor.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Triangular forest
  • Pronunciation: GAAR-Wuhd
  • Variations: Garrwode, Garrwood, Garwode
  • Popularity: Garwood is very rare worldwide, mainly used in the U.S., and ranked 985th in Gibraltar in 2014.
Formal, Rare


Griswald comes from the Old English “greosn,” meaning “gravel,” and “weald,” meaning “woodland.” Other than meaning “gray forest,” it’s thought to be inspired by Griswolds Farm in Warwickshire, England.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Grey forest
  • Pronunciation: GRIHS-Waold
  • Variations: Griswalde, Griswold
  • Popularity: Griswald is extremely rare worldwide, with only eight known occurrences in 2014, primarily in the U.S.
Traditional, Masculine


Guido means “guide” and “leader.” Despite being Italian, it may derive from the Old German Wido, meaning “wood,” which became very popular in medieval Italy.

  • Origin: Italian, German
  • Meaning: Forest guide
  • Pronunciation: GWIY-Dow
  • Variations: Guidoh, Gwido, Gwydo
  • Namesakes: Guido Guerrini, an Italian rally driver and winner of the 2017 FIA Alternative Energies Cup. Guido Cantz, a German TV presenter of Verstehen Sie Spaß? Since 2010.
  • Popularity: Guido is uncommon worldwide, mostly used in Italy, and ranked 88th in Belgium in 2014.
Masculine, Rare


Harwood means “dweller by the forest with the deer.” It’s based on the Old English “hor,” meaning “muddy,” and “wod,” meaning “wood.” Various places called Harwood and Harewood in England hark back to the Old English “hār,” meaning “gray.”

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Deer wooded area
  • Pronunciation: HHAAR-Wuhd
  • Variations: Hartwood
  • Namesakes: Harwood Williams, a Kittitian cricketer for the Leeward Islands. Harwood Sturtevant, the Episcopal bishop of the Diocese of Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.
  • Popularity: Harwood is very rare worldwide, mainly used in the U.S., and ranked 392nd in the Falkland Islands in 2014.
Formal, Earthy
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Hraenfnscaga is one of the most unknown names meaning forest, but for its meaning. It refers to a person “from the raven forest,” based on the Old English “hræfn,” which also has origins in Viking culture.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: From the raven forest
  • Pronunciation: Unknown
Mystical, Rare


Hurst is thought to be an English version of the German Horst. The Old English “hyrst” means “hillock” and “wooded eminence.” As a boy’s name, it specifically means “thicket of trees” – where mischievous boys can hide.

  • Origin: English, German
  • Meaning: Dweller in a grove
  • Pronunciation: HHERST
  • Variations: Horst
  • Popularity: Hurst is very rare worldwide and primarily used in the U.S.
Traditional, Uncommon


Idra is the last word you’d think of when describing a “fig tree.” Fig trees symbolize wealth and prosperity, which makes for a great name association.

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: Fig tree
  • Pronunciation: IH-Drah
  • Namesakes: Idra Novey, an American writer whose novel Those Who Knew won the 2017 Sami Rohr Prize.
  • Popularity: Idra is very rare worldwide, mostly used in India, and ranked 1,033rd in South Sudan in 2014.
Pretty, Ancient


Ilana was traditionally used for babies born during The New Year of the Trees, a Jewish holiday in January. Ilana can simply refer to a “tree” or an “oak tree.”

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: Beautiful tree
  • Pronunciation: Ih-LAEN-Ah
  • Variations: Ilaina
  • Namesakes: Ilana Dupont, a Canadian Paralympic athlete and bronze medalist at the 2008 Summer Paralympics. Ilana Vered, an Israeli pianist who played with the New York Philharmonic.
  • Popularity: Ilana is rare worldwide, mainly used in Brazil, and ranked 1,947th in Australia in 2014.
Pretty, Common


Javier is a variation of Xavier, inspired by Saint Francis Xavier. Though it means “new house,” Javier is also a Hindi name meaning “flower,” “victorious,” “forest,” and “green branches.”

  • Origin: Spanish, Latin
  • Meaning: Forest
  • Pronunciation: Hhae-viy-EHR
  • Namesakes: Javier Bardem, a Spanish actor and Oscar winner for No Country for Old Men (2007). Javier Báez, a Puerto Rican baseball player for the Detroit Tigers.
  • Popularity: Javier ranked 326th worldwide, is primarily used in Mexico, and ranked 249th for boys in the U.S. in 2021.
Masculine, Popular


Kanana means “grove” and is the feminine version of Kanan. It’s also found in Hawaii, meaning “beautiful” and “garden.”

  • Origin: Indian, Sanskrit
  • Meaning: Forest
  • Pronunciation: Kaa-NAH-naa
  • Variations: Kanani
  • Popularity: Kanana is rare worldwide and mostly used in Kenya, where it ranked 1,581st in 2014.
Unique, Feminine


Karri is inspired by the Western Australian Karri forest filled with karri, a type of eucalyptus. It’s one of the tallest hardwoods worldwide and one of the most direct examples of forest names.

  • Origin: Scandinavian
  • Meaning: Forest
  • Pronunciation: KARE-iy
  • Variations: Karey
  • Namesakes: Karri Hietamäki, a Finnish cross-country skier and silver medalist at the 1995 FIS Nordic World Ski Championships. Karri Turner, an American TV actress appearing in the series JAG (1997 to 2005).
  • Popularity: Karri is rare worldwide, mainly used in the U.S., and ranked 515th in Finland in 2014.
Informal, Cute


In West Africa, Keita comes from the Keita clan, which uses the root “keetaa,” meaning “to inherit.” It also means “blessing” and is a Japanese boy’s name.

  • Origin: Gaelic, West African
  • Meaning: Forest
  • Pronunciation: KAEY-Tah
  • Namesakes: Keita Baldé, a Senegalese footballer for Spartak Moscow. Keith Mildon (known as Keita Meretana), a New Zealand wrestler and winner of the 1959 NWA New Zealand Heavyweight Championship.
  • Popularity: Keita is rare worldwide and primarily used in the Ivory Coast, ranking 256th in 2014.
Pretty, Unique


When spelled Keziah, it refers to the daughter of Job in the Hebrew Bible. Keziah also means “restored to the heart of God,” but is best known for the Cassia tree, responsible for making cinnamon.

  • Origin: Hebrew, African
  • Meaning: Cassia tree
  • Pronunciation: KEH-ziy-Ah
  • Variations: Keziah, Kesiah, Kezia
  • Namesakes: Princess Kezia Rukidi of Toro, the wife of King George Rukidi III of Toro (1904 to 1965).
  • Popularity: Kezia is rare worldwide, primarily used in Brazil, and ranked 710th in Uganda in 2014.
Ancient, Earthy


Kimberly also means “from the royal fortress meadow.” It was originally associated with “Cyneburg’s field,” a “royal forest” in England. Kimberly peaked in the U.S. for girl’s names at 552nd in 1955.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: From the wood of the royal forest
  • Pronunciation: KIHM-ber-Liy
  • Variations: Kimberley, Kimberle, Kimberlee, Kimberleigh
  • Namesakes: Kimberley Nixon, a Welsh actress known for the BBC One period drama Cranford. Kimberley Edwards, an English pop singer and finalist on the eighth series of The X Factor in 2011.
  • Popularity: Kimberly ranked 915th worldwide and is mainly used in the U.S., ranking 592nd for girls in 2023.
Traditional, Popular
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Kirkwood most literally means “at the kirk wood” for someone who lived in “the wood beside the church.” Kirkwood is a location in Scotland and is one of the woodland names which began life as a last name.

  • Origin: English, Scottish
  • Meaning: Church forest
  • Pronunciation: KERK-Wuhd
  • Variations: Kerkwood, Kirkwode, Kurkwood, Kyrkwode, Kyrkwood
  • Namesakes: Kirkwood Otey, the commanding officer of the 11th Virginia Infantry in the Confederate Army during the American Civil War.
  • Popularity: Kirkwood is rare worldwide, primarily used in the U.S., and ranked 443rd in Scotland in 2014.
Traditional, Common


Lam is often used by Chinese people in Vietnam and comes from a Chinese surname meaning “forest.” Lam ranked 611th for surnames in the U.S. in 2010 and also means “the first” in Vietnamese.

  • Origin: Chinese
  • Meaning: Woods
  • Namesakes: Lam Ka Wai, a Hong Kong footballer for the Hong Kong Rangers. Lam Chi-chung, a Hong Kong actor appearing in the film The Sexy Guys (2019).
  • Popularity: Lam ranked 1,521st worldwide and is mostly used in Vietnam, where it ranked 48th in 2014.
Traditional, Common


Laragh is based on the Gaelic Láithreach, meaning “the site (or ruins) of a building.” Laragh is a village in County Wicklow, Ireland, and is hardly used by girls until you give it a try!

  • Origin: Irish
  • Meaning: Bay laurel
  • Pronunciation: LAHR-ah
  • Namesakes: Laragh McCann, an Irish model with Ford Models Europe.
  • Popularity: Laragh is extremely rare worldwide, with 79 known occurrences in 2014, mainly in Ireland and England.
Unique, Rare


Lin is a first name and surname found in China with many meanings. Other meanings include “trees,” “sun goddess,” and “gemstone.”

  • Origin: Chinese
  • Meaning: Forest, words
  • Pronunciation: LIHN
  • Variations: Linh, Linn, Lynn
  • Namesakes: Lin Junq-tzer, the Governor of Taiwan Province from 2010 to 2016. Lin Fangling, a Chinese badminton player and gold medalist at the 2019 World junior championships.
  • Popularity: Lin ranked 47th worldwide and is primarily used in China, where it ranked 14th in 2014.
Traditional, Popular


Lynn also means “waterfall,” “pool,” and “pond.” It’s a nickname for Linda, but it began as an Old English surname meaning “forest.”

  • Origin: English, Welsh
  • Meaning: Beautiful jade green forest
  • Pronunciation: LIHN
  • Variations: Lynne
  • Namesakes: Lynn Flewelling, an American fantasy fiction author whose novel Luck in the Shadows was a Locus Magazine Editor’s Pick for Best First Novel. Lynn Jennings, an American runner and bronze medalist at the 1992 Summer Olympics.
  • Popularity: Lynn ranked 1,310th worldwide and is mostly used in the U.S.
Pretty, Common


Maryweld also means “Maria of the forest.” It’s an example of combining nature-based pagan religions with Christianity in a name.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Mary of the woods
  • Pronunciation: MEH-riy-Wehld
  • Variations: Mariweld
  • Popularity: Maryweld is extremely rare worldwide, with only two known occurrences in 2014, in the U.S.
Mythical, Rare


Metsa refers to a “forest,” or “wood,” and any remote wooded area. In Estonian, Metsa means “go to the forest” (presumably to get away from it all).

  • Origin: Finnish
  • Meaning: Woman of the forest
  • Pronunciation: MEHT-Sah
  • Variations: Metsah
  • Popularity: Metsa is very rare worldwide and mainly used in South Africa.
Unusual, Rare


Moriko is made up of the Japanese “mori,” meaning “forest,” and “ko,” meaning “child.” It describes the “sacred grove around a Shintō shrine,” but it can be anywhere your forest baby wants to play.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Forest child
  • Pronunciation: MOW-riy-Kow
  • Variations: Mariko
  • Popularity: Moriko is very rare worldwide and primarily used in Japan, ranking 1,955th in 2014.
Traditional, Unique


While Morio also means “protector,” it traditionally refers to a “forest” or “grove.” It’s ideal for “forest boys” who want to play in the woods, jungle, or fields.

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Forest boy
  • Pronunciation: MOW-riy-Ow
  • Variations: Moryo
  • Namesakes: Morio Kita (pen name of Sokichi Saitō), a Japanese writer and winner of the 1960 Akutagawa Prize for In The Corner Of Night And Fog. Morio Higaonna, a Japanese founder of the International Okinawan Goju-ryu Karate-do Federation.
  • Popularity: Morio is rare worldwide and mostly used in Japan, where it ranked 386th in 2014.
Cute, Unique


Nahele is traditionally Cherokee but also appears as a Hawaiian name, meaning “tree grove” and “forest.”

  • Origin: Native American
  • Meaning: Forest
  • Pronunciation: Naa-HHEH-Leh
  • Variations: Naheal, Naheel, Naheil, Naheyl, Nahiel
  • Popularity: Nahele is extremely rare worldwide, with 45 known occurrences in 2014, mainly in the Ivory Coast.
Unusual, Mystical
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Nemorio goes back to the Latin “nĕmoriŭs,” meaning “inhabitant of the forest and woods.” It’s an obscure name also meant for someone living anywhere from a “jungle” to a “sacred grove.”

  • Origin: Latin
  • Meaning: Belongs to the sacred forest
  • Pronunciation: Neh-MAOR-iy-Ow
  • Popularity: Nemorio is rare worldwide and primarily used in Mexico, ranking 1,522nd in 2014.
Formal, Unusual


Nikunja derives from the Hindi Nikunjavana. In Hindu mythology, it was one of twelve small forest groves in Vrindavan called “upavanas.” Nikunja isn’t used as much outside of India, where it’s considered a spiritually based name.

  • Origin: Hindi
  • Meaning: Grove of trees
  • Pronunciation: Nih-KUHN-Jhah
  • Popularity: Nikunja is rare worldwide and mostly used in India.
Unique, Uncommon


Nowles is based on the English surname Knowles, which refers to a “dweller at the hilltop.” It also means “forest cove” for boys and girls who like to hide.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Forest bay
  • Pronunciation: NOWLZ
  • Variations: Knolls, Knowles, Nowels, Nowle
  • Popularity: Nowles is extremely rare worldwide, with only two known occurrences in 2014, in the U.S.
Rare, Formal


Oakley is better known as an English surname meaning “from the meadow near the oak trees.” It’s composed of the Middle English “oke,” meaning “oak,” and “ley,” meaning “meadow.” Ultimately, it was someone considered a “dweller at the oak meadow.”

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Oak meadow
  • Pronunciation: OWK-Liy
  • Variations: Oaklee
  • Namesakes: Oakley Hall, an American writer whose book Warlock was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1958. Oakley C. Collins, a member of the Ohio Senate from 1975 to 1986.
  • Popularity: Oakley is rare worldwide and mainly used in the U.S., ranking 744th for girls in 2020.
Traditional, Earthy


Oihane also simply means “wilderness” and “forest.” Though gender-neutral, it can be used as Oihan for boys and Oihana for girls.

  • Origin: Spanish, Basque
  • Meaning: From the forest
  • Pronunciation: OY-Hheyn
  • Variations: Oihaen, Oihaene, Oihain, Oihaine, Oihanne, Oihayn
  • Namesakes: Oihane Hernández, a Spanish footballer for the Spain women’s national team. Oihane Otaegi, a Spanish curler, and a 2018 World mixed silver medallist.
  • Popularity: Oihane is rare worldwide and primarily used in Spain, ranking 885th in 2014.
Unusual, Common


Oswald is taken from the Old German Ostold. It’s made up of “ōst,” meaning “south,” and “walt,” meaning “to rule.” Other ancient versions include the Germanic Answald and Norse Ásvaldr.

  • Origin: English, German
  • Meaning: Man from the south of the forest
  • Pronunciation: AAZ-Waold
  • Variations: Osvald, Oswalde, Osweald, Oswold
  • Namesakes: Oswald Karch, a German race car driver who competed in the 1953 German Grand Prix. Oswald Johnson, an American member of the Wisconsin State Assembly in 1943.
  • Popularity: Oswald is rare worldwide, primarily used in Germany, and ranked 163rd in Jamaica in 2014.
Traditional, Uncommon


Parker was once an occupational surname for a “keeper of a park,” which originated in medieval times for a “gamekeeper.” It’s also associated with the Old French “parchier,” meaning “park keeper,” and hasn’t appeared much as a first name since the 1800s.

  • Origin: English, French
  • Meaning: Park keeper
  • Pronunciation: PAARK-er
  • Variations: Parkar
  • Namesakes: Parker Hesse, an American football player for the Atlanta Falcons. Parker Mitchell, a Canadian co-founder of Engineers Without Borders.
  • Popularity: Parker is rare worldwide and mainly used in the U.S., where it ranked 106th for boys in 2023.
Formal, Traditional


Perrie is the Gaelic word for “pear tree,” yet means “traveler” and “wanderer” in Old English. It dates back to the Latin “peregrinus,” meaning “stranger.”

  • Origin: Gaelic, French
  • Meaning: Dweller by the pear tree
  • Pronunciation: PEH-Riy
  • Variations: Perry
  • Namesakes: Pierre “Perrie” Mans, a South African snooker player and winner of the South African Professional Championship in 1965. Perrie Edwards, an English singer and a member of the British girl group Little Mix.
  • Popularity: Perrie is very rare worldwide and primarily used in the U.S.
Cute, Unique


Poovannan means “forest of flowers” and “garden of flowers.” In India, it’s a Tamil name often used for “handsome boys” and a “king of flowers.”

  • Origin: Hindi, Sanskrit
  • Meaning: Flower forest
  • Pronunciation: POO-vah-Naan
  • Popularity: Poovannan is extremely rare worldwide, with 81 known occurrences in 2014, mostly in India.
Unusual, Rare


Ranger is a common occupational name in English for “one who patrols a forest.” In medieval times, it was also used for a “gamekeeper” or “warden.” The Middle English “range(n),” means “to arrange,” or “dispose of.” It may be connected to the German first name Ranghari.

  • Origin: French
  • Meaning: Forest guardian
  • Pronunciation: REYN-Jher
  • Variations: Raenger, Rainger, Reinger
  • Popularity: Ranger is very rare worldwide and mainly used in the U.S.
Masculine, Uncommon
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Raskogr is one of the most unheard of names that mean woods and is perhaps an unusual version of Roscoe. Other than an ancient name for someone, “from the deer forest” in Norse, there’s no data on how many, if any, people have this name.

  • Origin: Norse
  • Meaning: From the deer forest
  • Pronunciation: Unknown
Rare, Strong


Rinji is a lesser-known Japanese boy’s name, also meaning “dignity” and “majesty.” It’s also meant for an “awe-inspiring” boy who loves to play in the “peaceful forest.”

  • Origin: Japanese
  • Meaning: Peaceful forest
  • Pronunciation: RIHN-Yiy
  • Variations: Rinjee, Rinjey, Rinjie, Rinjy
  • Popularity: Rinji is very rare worldwide and primarily used in Nepal.
Cute, Uncommon


No other selection among names that mean forest has less information than Riodhr. It firmly places the name bearer in the forest’s clearing, but what he does after that is entirely up to him.

  • Origin: Norse
  • Meaning: Dwells in the clearing in the forest
  • Pronunciation: RIY-Owd-ehr
Ancient, Rare


As an English surname, Roscoe means “swift horse” but is better known as a first name meaning “deer wood.” It comes from the Old Norse “ra,” meaning “roe deer,” and “skogr,” meaning wood.” It hasn’t ranked in the top 1,000 names in the U.S. since 1978.

  • Origin: Norse
  • Meaning: Deer forest
  • Pronunciation: RAOS-Kow
  • Namesakes: Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle, an American silent film actor who introduced Buster Keaton to the movie business. Roscoe Thompson, an American NASCAR driver inducted into the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame in 2006.
  • Popularity: Roscoe is rare worldwide, mostly used in the U.S., and ranked 624th in the Bahamas in 2014.
Unique, Earthy


Seda also means “echo through the woods” in Armenian. In Portuguese, it’s a girl’s name meaning “silk.” Some say Seda refers to “forest voices” heard when no one else is looking.

  • Origin: Armenian
  • Meaning: Spirit of the forest
  • Pronunciation: SAYEH-Dah
  • Variations: Sedda, Sedah, Seyda
  • Namesakes: Seda Yörükler, a Turkish handballer for the Turkish national team. Seda Tutkhalyan, a Russian artistic gymnast and the 2014 Youth Olympic Games Individual All-around Champion.
  • Popularity: Seda is rare worldwide, mainly used in Turkey, and ranked 43rd in Armenia in 2014.
Mystical, Feminine


Silas is based on the Latin Silvanus, meaning “woods.” It’s inspired by Sylvanus, the Roman god of the forest. It was originally given to people who lived in the forest or worked with wood for a living.

  • Origin: Greek, Latin
  • Meaning: Forest, wood
  • Pronunciation: SAEY-Lahs
  • Variations: Sylas, Sylus, Silus
  • Namesakes: Silas Melson, an American basketball player for Petkim Spor. Silas Tertius Rand Bill, a Nova Scotia member of the House of Commons of Canada in 1878.
  • Popularity: Silas is uncommon worldwide, primarily used in Brazil, and ranked 91st for boys in the U.S. in 2021.
Ancient, Strong


Sylvanus is an alternate spelling of the Roman Silvanus, the god of forests and fields. The Latin “silva” means “wood” and was used to honor boundaries between land.

  • Origin: Latin, Greek
  • Meaning: God of the forest
  • Pronunciation: Sihl-VAEY-nahs
  • Variations: Silvanos
  • Namesakes: Sylvanus Percival Vivian, the 7th Registrar General of England and Wales from 1921 to 1945. Sylvanus Okpala, a Nigerian footballer for the Nigeria national football team.
  • Popularity: Silvanus is rare worldwide, mostly used in Nigeria, and ranked 112th in Sierra Leone in 2014.
Formal, Ancient


Sylvester means “of the forest,” taken from the Latin “silvestris,” meaning “wooded” or “wild.” Despite its pagan origins, Sylvester was the name of three popes throughout history.

  • Origin: Latin, Greek
  • Meaning: Of the woods
  • Pronunciation: Sihl-VEHST-er
  • Variations: Silvester
  • Namesakes: Sylvester Levay (born Lévay Szilveszter), a Hungarian musician and Grammy winner for his 1975 song “Fly Robin Fly.” Sylvester Terkay, an American wrestler and Ultimate Pro Wrestling’s first Heavyweight Champion.
  • Popularity: Sylvester is uncommon worldwide, mainly used in Nigeria, and ranked 79th in Sierra Leone in 2014.
Traditional, Mythical


Tallis is a modern English version of Thales. It doesn’t end there since Tallis means “wise” in Persian. Tallis means “forest” or “from the woods” in Welsh, and even “shining forehead.”

  • Origin: Welsh, Persian
  • Meaning: Woodland
  • Pronunciation: TAEL-ihs
  • Variations: Talas, Tales, Talys
  • Namesakes: Tallis Obed Moses, the president of Vanuatu from 2017 to 2022.
  • Popularity: Tallis is very rare worldwide and primarily used in Brazil.
Unusual, Rare


Tane means “man” and “male” in Polynesian. In Māori mythology, Tāne is the god of forests and birds all at once.

  • Origin: Polynesian, Maori
  • Meaning: God of forests
  • Pronunciation: TAA-Ney
  • Variations: Tain, Taine, Tayn, Tayne
  • Namesakes: Tane Nikolov, a Bulgarian revolutionary in the wars for National unification of Bulgaria. Tane Norton, a New Zealand rugby union player for the All Blacks.
  • Popularity: Tane is rare worldwide, mostly used in Japan, and ranked 805th in Northern Macedonia in 2014.
Mythical, Strong
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Tauriel is unlike any other example of names meaning forest since it’s fictional. It comes from J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit, meaning “daughter of Mirkwood” and “daughter of the forest.” The language is known as Sindarin, and the name stands beautifully on its own.

  • Origin: Tolkien
  • Meaning: Forest maiden
  • Pronunciation: TAO-riy-Ehl
  • Popularity: Tauriel is extremely rare worldwide, with only eight known occurrences in 2014, mainly in Brazil and Russia.
Unusual, Feminine


Upwood was first an English surname given to a person living near a location called Upwood. It also means “from the upper forest” and has no popularity stats as a first name.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Upper forest
  • Pronunciation: UHP-Wuhd
  • Popularity: As a surname, Upwood is extremely rare worldwide, with 93 known occurrences in 2014, primarily in the U.S.
Formal, Rare


Vanisa also means “butterfly” in Greek. It’s possibly related to Vanessa but is a more interesting choice for your mythical forest queen.

  • Origin: Greek, Hindi
  • Meaning: Goddess of the forest
  • Pronunciation: Vae-nih-ZAH
  • Popularity: Vanisa is very rare worldwide and mostly used in the Philippines.
Feminine, Ancient


Vedia is mostly unknown among names that mean woods and is a place in Buenos Aires. It also means “holy goddess,” offering a good dose of ancient spirituality.

  • Origin: Maori
  • Meaning: Holy spirit of the forest
  • Pronunciation: VEH-diy-Ah
  • Popularity: Vedia is very rare worldwide, mainly used in Turkey, and ranked 209th in Northern Cyprus in 2014.
Pretty, Mythical


Besides meaning “forester,” Walker is an English occupational name for a “fuller of cloth.” It’s based on the Old English “wealcere,” meaning “to walk.” It was very popular in the late 1800s but is more recognizable as a surname today.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Someone who walks in the forest
  • Pronunciation: WAOLK-er
  • Variations: Walkar, Walkir, Walkor
  • Namesakes: Walker Evans, an American photographer known for his photographs of the Great Depression. Walker Duehr, an American ice hockey player for the Calgary Flames.
  • Popularity: Walker is rare worldwide and primarily used in the U.S., ranking 109th for boys in 2023.
Masculine, Traditional


Waverley specifically means “meadow of quivering aspens.” It appeared as a surname based on a location but has found new life as a unisex given name among some.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Rippling meadow
  • Pronunciation: WEY-ver-Liy
  • Variations: Waverly, Waverlie
  • Popularity: Waverley is very rare worldwide and mostly used in the U.S.
Formal, Rare


Woody is a very vintage pet name for Woodrow, associated with the Middle English “wode,” meaning “wood.” Whether given to a woodcutter, forester, or someone living in the woods, it definitely sounds woodsy.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: From the lane in the woods
  • Pronunciation: WUWH-Diy
  • Variations: Woodie
  • Namesakes: Woody Guthrie, an American singer-songwriter known for “This Land Is Your Land.” Woody Upchurch, an American baseball player for the Philadelphia Athletics.
  • Popularity: Woody is uncommon worldwide and mainly used in the U.S.
Informal, Cute


Xylon is an ancient Greek word for “woods” and “forest.” It’s also used for someone who “lives in the forest,” with the most unique name around.

  • Origin: Greek
  • Meaning: From the forest
  • Pronunciation: ZIY-Laan
  • Variations: Xilon
  • Popularity: Xylon is extremely rare worldwide, with 61 known occurrences in 2014, primarily in the Philippines.
Ancient, Earthy


Yaen is a mystery among forest names, with the unique meaning of “ostrich” in Hebrew. It’s mainly used in many Asian countries for both boys and girls. Yaen evokes the animal world found in a forest or clearing, if nothing else.

  • Origin: Hebrew
  • Meaning: Ostrich
  • Pronunciation: YAYNE
  • Popularity: Yaen is very rare worldwide and mostly used in Taiwan.
Unusual, Rare


Yardley is one of the more traditional woodland names appearing in Old English. It’s made up of “gerd,” meaning “’rod spear,” and “lēah,” meaning “woodland clearing.” Yardley also refers to a “dweller at the meadow pasture,” the last place the elven people were likely spotted.

  • Origin: English
  • Meaning: Fenced meadow
  • Pronunciation: YAERD-Liy
  • Variations: Yardlee, Yardleigh, Yardlie, Yardly
  • Namesakes: Athol Yardley Meyer, an Australian journalist at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Charles Yardley Turner, an American painter and one of the founders of the Art Students League of New York in 1875.
  • Popularity: Yardley is very rare worldwide and mainly used in the U.S.
Formal, Uncommon
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About the Author

Maryana Vestic

Maryana Vestic is a Brooklyn-based writer, editor, and food photographer with a background in entertainment Business Affairs. She studied film at NYU, Irish Theatre Studies at Trinity College Dublin, and has an MFA in Creative Writing Nonfiction from The New School. She loves cooking, baking, hiking, and horror films, as well as running a local baking business in Brooklyn with her boyfriend.