Planting a Memory Tree

When we lose a loved one, we want to commemorate them in a way that keeps their memory alive. There are more traditional routes such as cremation and scattering ashes or having a funeral at your local cemetery. But another method is rising steadily in popularity and that is planting a memory tree. Memory trees leave a beautiful and long lasting tribute that can be cherished and appreciated for years to come. Here we take a look into the process behind planting a memory tree and why it’s such a beautiful way to remember a loved one.

What is a memory tree?

A memory tree is a tree planted with the ashes of a loved one. Through this process it essentially enables the person who has passed to still live on, through a beautiful tree or plant. It also gives their family and friends a peaceful and poignant place to visit and feel closer to them. It’s often favoured as it feels more peaceful than other methods and is also better for the environment.

What is the process of planting a memory tree?

A memory tree could be something you have spoken with your family member or friend about before they passed, or something you decided on after. No matter how you came to the decision, there are many reasons it’s fast becoming such a popular choice.

Memorial trees can help you to navigate the healing process and offer a calming and beautiful spot to remember your friend or family member. They are better for the environment than using a traditional headstone and can be more economical too. You can also make it more personal, choosing a plant or flower that either represents or reminds you of those that passed, or is one they chose themselves. It's personal, convenient and offers a meaningful commemorative spot that can be visited for years to come.

Step 1: Choose the location for your tree

The first step when it comes to planting a memorial tree is choosing the location and there are a few options for this. The first thing you could do is choose a location that means something to you or the person that has passed. This could be a walking route they used to love, a back garden or another point that has significance - just be sure that if it’s a public space you have permission from the council. Another option you have for location is to choose a memorial forest. There are currently over fifty different memorial forests in the UK and these are on the rise. Think of a location that is easy to get to whenever you want to visit, or something that has some significance for you or your loved one. 

Step 2: Choose the type of tree

Once you’ve decided where to plant your tree, you need to consider the type of tree to plant. Consider the time of year you will be planting the tree, how easy it is to maintain and the area it is being planted. Certain trees require much less maintenance than others and are better suited to certain climates. You want to ensure whichever tree you choose will thrive and be a beautiful commemoration for decades to come. Some popular tree types include a wild apple tree, hawthorn tree, bay tree and Irish oak tree.

When you choose your memory tree, your loved one's ashes will be placed in the bottom of a biodegradable urn, then a special soil solution will be placed on top and the tree planted on top of this.

Step 3: Plant your tree and hold a ceremony

Once you have chosen and ordered your tree and biodegradable urn system from the Living Urn, you need to organise the planting of the tree. Some people decide to hold a more formal ceremony for this, while others like to do something private with immediate friends and family members - the choice is yours. Be sure to keep an eye on the weather as you won’t be able to plant your tree if it’s too extreme. You want it to be a time when the ground is soft enough to dig up and the temperature is mild enough that your tree can thrive. 

Step 4: Keep your tree maintained

Once your tree has been planted you are going to want to keep it maintained, something that is particularly important in the first year to ensure it grounds its roots and lays the foundation for future growth. This could be a duty you do yourself or split with others that were also closed to the person who passed. You could also add a plaque in the ground near your tree with a commemorative message. One of many types of green burials, a biodegradable urn is a fantastic choice to do your bit. Trees to plant in memory of someone can be a real solace in a hard time in your life.

Memory trees are a beautiful way to mark the passing of a relative or friend. You get the chance to play an active role in the commemoration of the person that passed as well as give back to nature and grow a living memory. A remembrance tree can be less expensive than traditional funeral methods and many prefer the beauty of a forest to visit and remember their loved one rather than heading to a cemetery. To find out more about our Living Urn planters and memory trees, look on our website here.