Many of us are paying more attention to how we treat the world we live in.
And this also goes for making decisions at the end of life.
What we decide to do with our loved one’s ashes doesn’t need to impact the environment.
Biodegradable urns are a great option.
They are eco-friendly, elegant, and a beautiful way to memorialize a loved one.
This guide will teach you everything you need to know about biodegradable urns.
We’ll discuss the different types that are available, where to purchase, and how to even make one yourself.
Biodegradable Urns for Water
Many people displayed an enduring love for water over their lifetimes and wish to be united with the ocean.
The scattering of ashes across a body of water has become popular, but it is not a process without problems.
Why use a Water Urn?
Biodegradable urns for water makes the process easier and also creates a dignified atmosphere for the cremation ceremony.
They are designed to break down naturally when exposed to water.
How do they work?
You place the remains in the urn after first putting it in a ashes container. Make sure you use a water soluble bag.
A plastic bag might end up harming the environment and the urn might not sink.
These water urns are usually made of recycled paper, natural clay, wood, plant fibres, and similar materials that decompose easily over time.
Below are some very popular urns:
Silverlight Urns Journey Urn For Water
This eco urn is handmade from recycled cardboard and paper derived from mulberry bark.
The materials give the simple rectangular urn a rough, natural texture.
Its delicate blue shade adds even more to the natural appearance.
The urn floats for about five minutes before gracefully sinking.
Over time, it will break down naturally, releasing your loved one’s ashes into the surrounding water.
Oceanside Shell White Biodegradable Urn
A beautiful replica of a delicate seashell is a fitting image for a seaside memorial.
This shell urn can be used for a water burial, or even in a scattering ceremony.
Made of biodegradable clay and cotton, the urn resembles a glossy, lustrous seashell nestled in ocean sand.
It comes with a water-soluble bag to place the ashes.
The bag fits neatly inside a bowl that is attached to the bottom of the shell with glue and clips that are also biodegradable.
Lily at Peace Biodegradable Urn
The water lily is the epitome of peace, grace and purity.
Throughout ancient history, it has been revered as symbolic of the cycle of death and rebirth, and also of enlightenment.
This makes it the perfect image for a water urn.
This lily urn comes in a pristine shade of white and is sure to look both graceful and natural as it floats on the water before sinking.
Paper Turtle Biodegradable Urn
A paper urn in the shape of a sea turtle ensures that your loved one’s memorial service will never be forgotten.
Detailed and unique, the urn was crafted by skilled Mexican artisans.
Ashes are placed through an opening in the bottom of the turtle, which can be easily and securely sealed using the materials provided.
Despite its delicate appearance, the turtle urn can comfortably hold the cremains of an adult weighing 200 pounds or less.
Ocean Sunset Scattering Tube
The stunning colors of an ocean sunset decorate this tube and add meaning to your scattering ceremony.
A sunset over ocean waters is a symbol of peace and of the new day dawning for your loved one.
Friendly to the environment, the tube is constructed of recyclable paper. It can be kept as a memento or recycled after the ceremony.
Biodegradable Urn (Calla Lily) For Scattering Ashes
The beautiful calla lily is a symbol of purity and innocence, making it a great choice for a memorial.
An array of white calla lilies are depicted side by side on the surface of the urn.
It also has a flat base for easy display during a ceremony.
The urn will float for a brief time, ranging from about 30 seconds to about three minutes, depending on the turbulence of the water.
Element Urns Eco Water Urn
The beauty of this eco urn is its simplicity and its unique and functional design.
A lovely bamboo case makes for classy and convenient transport to the scattering site, as well as an attractive way to display the remains during a memorial service.
The urn is of such superior quality that it’s a popular choice for funeral homes.
Passages International Sand Globe Biodegradable Urn
The pleasing globe shape and the natural sand texture of this urn are designed for comfort.
A simple scrolled band adds just the right touch of understated detail.
The urn is suitable for burial in either water or earth.
It will biodegrade within a few days when placed in the water. If buried in the ground, it will biodegrade within three months.
The Final Hole Floating Golf Urn
Was your loved one a golfer? Did he or she also love the ocean? Then this unusual floating golf urn is the perfect choice.
An image of a golf course is adorned with the fitting, tongue-in-cheek description, “The Final Hole.”
At last your beloved golfer has finished the game and can enjoy his or her well-deserved rest.
Handmade Dolphin Biodegradable Urn
The friendliest and most intelligent of the ocean animals makes a wonderful tribute to an individual who loved the ocean.
It’s crafted of recycled paper and hand-painted a delicate shade of sea-blue.
As an alternative to the traditional glue closure, the urn is sealed securely with a leather cord.
Ashes can be discreetly inserted into a compartment at the top of the urn.
Memento Biodegradable Urn by Passages International
This This eco urn is crafted of handmade paper in a calming shade of sea blue.
The design is a simple disc shape with a slot at the top to place personal notes to the lost loved ones.
It even comes with note cards so that friends and family can write messages of love and remembrance.
Forest Wood Cremation Urn for Scattering Ashes
This scattering box is a wonderful way to celebrate your loved one’s enjoyment of the woods.
A design portraying tree branches lifted delicately to the sky will bring you a feeling of peace.
The box is crafted of lightweight fiberboard.
A sliding panel makes it easy to access the cremains for a peaceful, hassle-free scattering ceremony.
It can fit the ashes of a person weighing up to 195 pounds before cremation.
Shell Biodegradable Urn
This beautiful shell urn is hand-crafted from non-toxic, food-grade recycled paper.
It comes with a custom carrying case and includes a water-soluble plastic bag for cremated remains.
Engineered to float for approximately five minutes before descending, the urn biodegrades naturally over time.
Himalayan Salt Sea Urn
This Himalayan urn is the perfect option for scattering at sea.
It’s made of Himalayan rock salt deposits, believed to be over 250 million years old.
The urn typically dissolves within 4 hours when placed in water.
Each urn looks slightly unique in shape, making it a special choice for a person you want to honour.
Waterside Scattering Urn
This scattering urn is perfect for celebrating the special love of a mom.
Depending on water conditions, it can float on the water’s surface for an amazing twelve minutes before sinking.
A marker is included to allow family members to personalize the urn with special messages.
The urn is constructed of recycled paper and sugarcane bagasse, making it completely eco-friendly.
More about Water Urns
If you are considering a water scattering, have a look at our guide specifically written about biodegradable urns for water.
You maybe also interested in reading our scattering at sea guide which will give you some great advice about planning a ceremony.
Eco Urns For Ground Burial
If you’ve decided to inter the ashes, an eco urn is a great choice that will not cause harm to the environment.
Eco urns are made of a variety of biodegradable materials – usually paper, bark, leaves, sand, and other materials.
These urns leave no trace after they have been absorbed into the earth making them an ideal choice for burials.
Buying an Eco Urn
Your loved one’s ashes will be taken care of in a sustainable and eco-friendly manner. Below are some great eco urns on the market that we recommend:
Perfect Memorials Biodegradable Box
The Perfect Memorials Urn is a stylish box-shaped urn made by hand from recycled and earth-friendly materials and biodegrades naturally when buried.
Favourite Place Shell Box
This biodegradable urn derives its name from its stylish design which is so attractive that you would want to put it in a favourite place.
It’s large and comes with a richly embossed white quartz metallic paper decorated in an attractive swirl.
Simplicity Woodgrain Biodegradable Urn
This woodgrain eco box has a natural wood grain pattern.
It’s ideal to celebrate a simple soul who loved nature.
The box is suitable for ground burial or to use in a scattering ceremony. The sliding panel gives you easy access to the remains.
The urn can hold the cremains of a person weighing up to 240 pounds.
Silverlight Urns Embrace Eco Urn
This is a simple, square-shaped urn decorated with a lovely floral design.
It’s made of natural, biodegradable white hemp and handcrafted paper, created through a unique process of harvesting and drying mulberry bark.
Perfect Memorials Grecian Biodegradable Urn
A design of glossy grecian leaves adorns this handsome urn.
It’s sturdy enough for burial, but attractive enough for display.
As solid as it is, it is completely biodegradable once interred in the earth.
Be aware that the lid is not threaded and you may need to do some extra work to make it fit securely.
The urn holds a maximum capacity of 140 cubic inches.
Passages Biodegradable Urn for Two
This is an extra large eco companion urn made from biodegradable tree bark. It comes in an attractive Ivory.
It’s a companion urn, meaning it’s suitable for the remains of two people or a large person.
The Living Urn Eco Burial Urn
This urn is designed specifically for dignified and eco-friendly burial of ashes.
It’s made entirely of beautiful, all-natural bamboo.
The urn can comfortably fit the cremains of any adult weighing up to 220 pounds.
Embrace Biodegradable Urn- Floral Bouquet
The sweet detail of a small floral bouquet graces this simple blue urn for earth burial.
A water soluble bag protects remains from the elements as the box and its contents gradually degrade into the earth.
The urn is crafted from bark that is harvested from the tree through a special process that leaves the tree unharmed.
The bark is then dried in the sun to create a unique, natural texture.
Simple Biodegradable Urn Box
This simple urn stands out as the ultimate in feminine simplicity.
It’s a pink box made of biodegradable cornstarch.
A matching pink bag on the inside makes an attractive and dignified resting place for your loved one’s ashes.
Tree Urns: What are they?
A tree urn is the ultimate eco-solution that serves both the one you want to honor and the environment.
It allows life to start again in the ashes of one that’s ended.
How do they work?
This ingenious invention is a 100% biodegradable and environmentally friendly urn.
They come with seeds that are mixed with the ashes. And when planted, your urn will grow into a tree.
You can take comfort in that you’re contributing to cleaner air while beautifying the environment.
This product offers a sustainable green solution to burial needs while benefitting the environment indefinitely.
The Best Tree Urns on the market
A few companies have created some innovative tree urn products. Below are a few that we have reviewed and recommend:
Bios Urn Memorial
The Bios Urn is the world’s first biodegradable urn designed to convert your loved one’s ashes in a tree.
It seems to be the most popular and highly regarded product on the market.
The urn is made with 100% biodegradable materials.
What do you get?
The Bios Urn comes with the option of a number of seeds, which you can choose when ordering.
The urn is a cardboard tube made of two separate cones, the bottom one for the ashes and the top one for a soil mix and the seed of choice. The two cones are buried together.
The Living Urn
The Living Urn is the second most popular tree urn on the market.
The kit comes with seedlings to grow a tree and a stylish bamboo container.
Made from recycled plant materials using only water, heat and pressure, the urn is completely biodegradable.
How it works
To ensure successful growth of the tree, seedlings rather than seeds are provided with the urn.
The cremated remains are placed in the urn with ash neutralizing agent on top. Next, the tree seedling roots with special growth mix is added.
Because a tree urn allows people to grow a living keepsake, they have become a very popular choice when deciding what to do with the remains of a loved one.
More about Tree Urns
If you’re interested in knowing more, take some time to read our Tree Urns Review.
Eco Urns for Pets
Biodegradable urns are not only available for humans. Our pets have a special place in our hearts and naturally we want to give them a proper send off.
There are a wide variety of eco-friendly cremation urns for pets to choose from.
Below we’ll discuss the most popular products on the market:
Paw Pods Biodegradable Pet Burial
These natural looking pods are a very popular choice with pet owners.
They come in different sizes and are made from durable but fully biodegradable materials.
Each Paw Pod includes a sympathy card and seeded leaf designed for planting with the pod.
The Medium Paw Pod is suitable for cats, small dogs, rabbits and similar small animals.
Bios Urns For Pets
The Bios Urns for Pets will turn your beloved pet’s ashes into a memorial tree.
Although commonly used with cats and dogs, it’s suitable for all pets.
If you want to find out more about the product, check out their amazon store.
The Living Urn For Pets
The The Living Urn for Pets Planting System that includes a biodegradable urn, premium planting mix, ash neutralizing agent, aged wood chips and a
It also comes with beautiful bamboo cover that serves as a special keepsake box once you plant urn.
The system looks attractive and natural, making it easy to memorialize your beloved dog or cat with a tree or plant that will look right anywhere in a garden large or small.
This feel-good solution is a 100% biodegradable urn made from recycled plant materials. Even the manufacturing process is eco-friendly as it uses only water, heat and pressure.
To ensure that your tree or plant grows and thrives, the system comes with special additives to offset the high pH and sodium levels in cremated remains.
How to make a biodegradable urn
If you are handy and enjoy working with your hands, making your own eco-friendly urn would be a special and cost effective experience.
Paper Mache Urn
Ideal for a sea burial, a paper mache urn allows you to put the ashes in a container instead of scattering, which can cause difficulties.
Of course, this kind container can also be used to bury the remains.
Once you’ve personalised and finished your eco-friendly container, it’s a good idea to obtain a special biodegradable plastic bag to first put the ashes in.
Here is a great video to help you with the basic steps using a balloon to create an oval shape.
When the glue has dried you can decorate the urn to your taste and use it to contain the remains, which you can cover with paper or a Paper Mache lid.