The rise of memorial gardens and natural burial grounds

In recent years there has been an increase in the number of people rejecting traditional burial customs and opting for a burial that better suits their beliefs, attitudes toward death and personal philosophy. One of the ways in which this has manifested itself is in an increase in demand for natural burial grounds.

While traditional burial methods are still the popular choice,memorial gardens and natural burial grounds are emerging as a popular alternative way of conducting a funeral. As with all matters relating to death, it’s important to consider the wishes of the deceased and to fulfil them as far as possible, regardless of whether they coincide with contemporary attitudes and practices.With this in mind, at Bios Urn® we’re going to take a look at at the types of places which offer a natural burial grounds in a little more depth.

Firstly, what are natural burial grounds

The world of natural burial is very varied, but the common concept of natural burial is an alternative to the classic cemetery. 

A natural burial attempts to return a body to the earth in as natural a way as possible. This generally involves a rejection of embalming processes, cremation and caskets or coffins that won’t biodegrade with time and often takes place in green spaces, called natural burial grounds, such as wildflower meadows, protected woodland and park land.

Natural burials are for everyone, but may particularly appeal to those that desire a more simple burial process, to those that believe that the body is best returned to the earth upon death, and to those with a passion for conservationism.

At Bios Urn® we are firm believers in natural burial grounds. We strive to support the natural burial ground movement grow in all countries around the world.

Memorial gardens

Bios Urn Blog: Natural burial grounds

Memorial gardens are areas planted for a specific purpose. That purpose is to remember someone or something special. Memorial gardens are usually planted in memory of people who have passed away. The garden is planted as a tribute to the life or lives that were lost.

A memorial garden can be in a private garden or in a public one such as the Parque de la Paz (Park of Peace) or the Parc Roques Blanques, both in Spain.

They tend to offer different alternatives: from the burial of a tomb or an urn to family plots, all in a natural environment as opposed to a traditional cemetary.

They are gardens that are nice to walk around and be in, whethere you are visiting a loved-one or not.

Natural burial grounds

Bios Urn Blog: Natural burial grounds

Close to nature, simple and comforting, more and more organizations offer burials in the forest as an alternative to the traditional cemetery.

Graves are identified by colored bands tied around the trees. In the middle of the forest, Most often, the ashes of the dead rest in biodegradable urns at the roots of trees like at Arbres de Memoire in France as seen above. 

Grave decorations are often not allowed in natural burial grounds such as Fried Wald or Trauer Waldoase both located in Germany, because arrangements, candles and tombstones do not fit into the natural environment of the forest. They are replaced by moss, ferns, wildflowers, colorful leaves and snow, which adorn the tree´s roots according to the season and make them individual places of remembrance. Nature takes over.

Unique in Europe, the Memory Grove at Ad Medirraneum in Spain offers the possibility to bury an urn under an always-green orange tree, embedded in a wonderful scenery.


The first Bios Urn® cemetary

Bios Urn Blog: Natural burial grounds

On May 6th, 2017, in Quebec, Canada, the first Bios Urn® was planted in a special garden just for Bios Urns®. A cemetery in Quebec has recently teamed up with a local Bios Urn® distributor to provide a new experience for those seeking to use a Bios Urn®, and plant it in a special outdoor garden.

Cimetière Catholique Granby, located in Granby, Quebec has devoted a portion of its land specifically to be used for the planting of a Bios Urn® – the new garden is called Le Boisé de Vie in French, which roughly translates to “The Wood of Life”. This Bios garden is welcome to people of all faiths, and from all religions.

Do you know any recommendable natural burial grounds or memorial gardens?  Let us know in the Comments section below! We´d love to hear from you. Or if you would like to start your own Bios Urn® natural burial ground, get in touch with us at [email protected].

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    • Bios Urn says

      Thanks for getting in touch Scott. For further commercial information on setting up a Bios Urn natural burial ground, please write to the team at [email protected] who will be able to provide further information. To get the necessary permits to create a natural burial ground to plant Bios Urns, you will need to get in touch with your local authorities. Hopefully we will hear from you soon!

  1. Maureen says

    The natural burial grounds that you have mentioned are not located in the US. Is there a particular problem securing grounds and/or permission in the US?

    • Bios Urn says

      Thank you for your message Maureen. In our article we mentioned a few that we know of, but there are many more around the world. We are unaware of the exact local laws in the US regarding natural burial grounds and memorial gardens. If you google “natural burial grounds” or “memorial gardens” near where you live, you should see what is closest to you and they are sure to be able to provide further information also. We hope this helps! If not, let us know, we will do our best to help.

  2. Anthony Farris says

    Are there any Memorial Burial Grounds around Houston, TX? If the body is not cremated or filled with formaldehyde, what happens to it. What is the whole process?

    • Bios Urn says

      Thanks for your message Anthony. Karen below is suggesting Eloise Woods in Cedar Creek, Tx (near Austin). Maybe you can discover more by searching online for natural burial grounds near your area. As for your other question, we aren’t specialists in this type of process so we are unfortunately not able to confirm. Why not reach out to a specialist to find out what options are available and how they each work. Wishing you a peaceful New Year!

  3. Erma says

    Have you already introduce this concept of natural burial grounds in the Philippines? When are you planning to set up one in our country? And, where specifically are you eyeing to set up same? Thank you very much.

    • Bios Urn says

      Hello Erma. Unfortunately Bios Urn doesn´t have any immediate plans for a memorial garden in the Philippines 😔 We are always open to speaking with someone who would like to start a Bios Urn memorial garden in any other country. If you or anyone you know may be interested, please do get in touch with us! [email protected]. Alternatively you can do an online research for natural burial grounds near your area. If you find any please share here so other people can also benefit!

  4. Jean Ingle aka Jingle says

    please can you tell me are there any sites in or near the Blue mountains NSW Australia? I have spoken to several people about this & everyone seems interested & even our local council seems unaware of anywhere in our area. I hope you may have some information that has been well hidden from the “need to know” brigade. Thank you for your site & attention Jingle

    • Bios Urn says

      Dear Jean. Thank you for your message. We unfortunately don’t know of any memorial gardens in the Australian Blue Mountains – it would definitely be a special spot. Is anyone else reading this able to recommend one? Have you tried searching online? Alternatively, maybe a private land owner or your local council would be interested in creating one! Hopefully we will hear from you soon!

  5. Rick says

    Are there and sights in Hampshire that will let you use there land to plant a tree??. What rights do yiu have would the government give permission for clotting down a forest with bio trees growing who would look after the paths and if the tree is damaged or infected who would treet them. I think it’s a great idea but you we need a lot more information getting the bio urns is easy but where too put them that’s a Big Problem. the forests need the same proction has a grave yard I would like very much to use them for the whole family has a group of trees

    • Bios Urn says

      Dear Rick. You raise some very good points. We have sent our Bios Urn to over 50 countries around the world and every country has very different laws and regulations relating to the funeral industry and what one can do with human ashes. Living in the States, you are fortunate in that it is a country quite liberal in this matter offering people more options than in many other countries, even though regulations vary from State to State. Planting our urns on private land ensures that the trees are treated and protected by the family. However this is not something that everyone can do and the second best option is to plant them in a green burial site or natural burial ground dedicated to the protection and conservation of the trees. We recommend checking out this website in the “Find providers” section to see what natural burial grounds or other similar options in your State Thank you for reaching out.


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