Sustainable ways to say goodbye

Funerals and burials that tread lightly on the Earth

We don't embalm and use only earth friendly soaps and procedures to ensure you can be a tree in the greenest possible way.

No headstones or formal markers are involved with a true natural burial. Graves are found using GPS reference points or by the planted tree/shrub.

Graves in the two natural burial grounds in Adelaide are 99 Years leases.  Considering all factors you are guaranteed to be left alone a long time.

We love being outdoors, 

close to nature

We love seeing cloud patterns change, trees sway and hearing the leaves rustle in a fresh breeze. Sometimes the birds are singing, insects buzzing and the ever changing smells and scent.  Natural burial grounds are a good place to be to escape the everyday life and be quietly left undisturbed. We hope you like what you see. 

Pilyu Yarta - Smithfield Burial Ground
Pilyu Yarta - Smithfield Burial Ground

Living Cemetery

Our Natural Burial service is dedicated in providing low impact services.  We actively promoted green funeral options, are chemical free and carbon offset our funerals.

Every natural earth burial is better for the environment than a traditional burial as we only use greener coffins and shrouds

Natural burial, also called a green burial, is an eco friendlier form of burial that aims to have as little impact on the earth as possible.

What Makes A Natural Burial ?

For a burial to be as natural and earth friendly as possible, the following considerations should be taken :

  1. Limiting waste during the funeral process
  2. The use of eco friendly coffins and caskets
  3. Care of the environment during the funeral process
  4. The avoidance of chemicals as part of the mortuary process

Reasons To Have A Green Burial

Many are concerned with the impact that we humans are having on the environment. Choosing a natural burial, using eco friendly products and being buried in a natural burial ground, is a simple way to lessen your impact and reduce your carbon footprint.

This "modern trend" of natural burial really is just a return to the way funerals have always been done traditionally prior to modern industrialization and the advent of big city living.

How Natural Burials Conserve Resources

Our coffin and casket range consists of products made from sustainably produced materials and many from renewable sources. Traditional coffins and caskets are made from fibreboard, timber and metals that may not be in sustainable ways.

How Natural Burials Preserve The Environment

Eco friendly caskets are easily biodegradable and don't add nasty toxins to the soil as they break down. We have a selected range we suggest for a true earth friendly natural burial.

Commercially produced coffins and caskets can take many years to decompose in the ground, especially if they contain metal and plastic parts. Natural Funerals offer a range of coffins that are more earth friendly than particle board and other fibreboards.

All South Australian Natural Burial Grounds require that a green coffin or casket is used or a shroud be used when the body is buried. This helps keep the burial ground pure and eco friendly and stops leaching of contaminants into the ground water. No bodies are embalmed in natural burial grounds.

How To Have A Natural Burial

There are a number of ways you can become more earth friendly at your own funeral. These are a few considerations:

  • Working with a genuine green or natural funeral home (Natural Funerals has the only dedicated natural burial service in SA "The Natural Burial Company").
  • Using a green coffin or casket for burial
  • Selecting a green cemetery for burial such as Wirra Wonga or Pilyu Yarta Cemeteries.
  • Choosing to have a graveside service which uses less resources.

Waste reduction

Natural Funerals has a strong emphasis on reducing waste wherever possible. The funeral industry is by its very nature a waste polluting business with coffins and caskets being either cremated or buried with plastic handles and synthetic fibre clothing.

We have a policy of reduction that includes the following :

  • To not use plastic handles unless necessary in carrying during a funeral or for OH&S requirements at the cemetery
  • Use biodegradable plastic 
  • No embalming of bodies is to occur **
  • Balloons and the use of disposable plastic items on our funerals are prohibited. We stock a range of eco friendly items such as biodegradable cups and plates.

For more on how we reduce waste please contact us.

** Unless the deceased is to be repatriated out of Australia where this is an IATA (air travel) requirement.

Wirra Wonga Natural Burial Ground
Wirra Wonga Natural Burial Ground
Wirra Wonga Natural Burial Ground
Wirra Wonga Natural Burial Ground

About being a tree

How to be a tree

For over 35 years the United Kingdom have been pioneering the development and establishment of natural burial grounds. There are now dozens scattered all over Britain. In South Australia we have two formal grounds at Enfield Memorial Park and Smithfield Memorial Park. Natural funerals are formaldehyde free with no synthetic chemicals used, minimal plastic and natural fibres used to wrap or dress the deceased. Natural Burials are all about being returned to the earth to compost into soil nutrients with a native tree marking the spot.

The Natural Funeral Company are leaders in developing products and services for natural, or earth friendly funerals. Our dedicated service The Natural Burial Company can help you 'become a tree'.

Choices to be a tree

After all the paperwork and planning is complete the most important need on the day of a funeral is a coffin or shroud that is natural. We suggest a Eco Coffin made of recycled cardboard as the most versatile means as a viewing can be held more easily, it can be used in a chapel and allows a more smoother transition from hearse to the grave. Shroud burials are equally as green but the law requires a shroud to be transported within a cemetery inside a coffin then removed. This can be cumbersome but we have the methods to make it happen with the use of our Iluka shell system.

We also have a large range of wicker/willow/wool coffins to consider, as well as a large range of Australian Pine and cardboard coffins to choose from.

What you can't avoid

The cemetery fees !

Cemetery fees involve a number of aspects that are essential to a burial funeral.

The first is the license (also known as grant or lease) to a site for a set number of years. The two main natural burial grounds in Adelaide have licenses for 99 years that cost from $7200 each

The second is the grave digging (also known as interment fee). This fee covers the clearing, digging and back-filling the grave after the service. This is included in the above fee.

Every cemetery has different fees and charges for their graves so please contact us for specific pricing. Some permit or include a tree and others may allow a natural burial but not a tree planted on the grave. Talk to us about your options.

From the other side of the world

Natural Burial in England

Details coming soon

Natural Burial in England

Details coming soon