Green, or natural burial is a way of caring for the dead with minimal environmental impact that aids in the conservation of natural resources, reduction of carbon emissions, protection of worker health, and the restoration and/or preservation of habitat. Green burial necessitates the use of non-toxic and biodegradable materials, such as caskets, shrouds, and urns.
Willow grows from February to July and in the right conditions it can grow inches per day. It is traditionally planted closely spaced which forces the wicker rods to grow straight and tall. It produces generous foliage during the growing season.
From July to November wicker stops growing and gradually sheds its foliage. Between late November and February willow becomes dormant and this is the season for harvesting and for planting new cuttings for next year.
Willow plants are grown sustainably being very easy to harvest and requiring no fertilisers, pesticides or herbicides. The plants can replenish fertility in degraded and marginal soils and also provide habitat for birds and insects. They also act as windbreaks, stabilise soil and can combat river and coastal erosion. It also provides badly needed seasonal income for families in farming communities.
Willow coffins are among the most environmentally friendly coffins available. We believe that our coffins are the ultimate in environmental recycling as willow is a highly renewable crop harvested each year which involves minimal processing. It can degrade rapidly in the soil and helps to lock carbon emissions into its willow stems.
In the right soil conditions willow tends to decompose much more quickly than traditional materials such as MDF, hardwoods and metal.
Willow is a carbon neutral material and when burnt only gives off the same amount of carbon that it consumes within it’s lifetime. Nearly half a million wooden coffins are burnt in the UK each year, polluting the atmosphere with dioxin, hydrochloric acid, hydrofluoric acid, sulphur dioxide and carbon dioxide. These same toxins are released during decomposition, just more slowly from underground and are released into the soil first.
All of our Willow Caskets are completely natural and biodegradable. They break down in 6 months to 2 years depending on soil conditions. Willow coffins are woven and therefore do not depend on toxic glues, varnish, plastics, or metals.
Their colours are the natural plant dyes in the pigmentation. This means that colour tone may vary from batch to batch.
Eco friendly caskets are a beautiful and natural solution to a difficult problem.