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First Garden Dedicated to Planting the Bios Urn has Opened!

The Tree of Life Garden is dedicated to planting the Bios Urn

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 open 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 Jardin d’arbre de vie in French, which roughly translates to “The tree of life garden”. This Bios garden is welcome to people of all faiths, and from all religions.

Families and individuals will be invited to participate in a tree of life planting ceremony, and are able to also plant the seeds or seedlings themselves. Flowers, shrubs, trees, and even fruit trees are available to be used. Over 20 tree varieties are currently availableaccording to the director Élyse Champagne, director of the Catholic cemeteries of Granby. All of the species chosen are compatible with the local environment and are native tree species. The Bios Urns will be planted during optimal planting seasons, namely from May to October.

“Through death there is life that resumes”

The cemetery has plans to expand, and is truly going green ensuring that all materials planted in the cemetery are natural and biodegradable – so as to respect the environment as much as possible. A gazebo is currently being planned to hold celebrations of life as well.

The Catholic Cemetery of Granby has also mentioned that it is possible to add name plaques or leather belts for the trees, for those who desire more customization. On top of these services, they have dedicated a team of tree growers who will check on the trees periodically to ensure they are growing healthily – as a guarantee to families and individuals who have opted to plant in the garden.

A step forward

Forward thinking cemeteries and individuals are responsible for the opening of this new and innovative garden. We have written in the past about how cemeteries need to evolve, and how many are refusing to adapt to sustainable options for families and individuals. While some cemeteries prefer to keep to a more traditional route, others, like the Catholic Cemetery of Granby, are willing to go beyond and create new spaces where they are needed. While this is one garden, it still represents a significant leap forward.

We are thankful to the distributors in Canada and Quebec who have helped make this project a reality, and to the Catholic Cemetery of Granby for creating a special sacred space for the Bios Urn. We hope to see more coming in the future!  What do you think about the first garden specifically dedicated to the Bios Urn? Would you like to see more near you? Let us know sending a message!

Cemeteries and the need to evolve

When Hélène Blondin passed away, her family opted to use a Bios Urn, as they felt it was an appropriate way to remember her after life, and that it would be a beautiful memorial. They wanted to use the Bios Urn in a cemetery in Quebec.

Quebec has become increasingly strict on burying urns in the past few years, and has also just passed a law which further regulates ash scattering as well.

The Bios Urn has been used all over the world in various locations and places, including many cemeteries and natural burial grounds. What has become clear to us in the past few years, is that some people, cemeteries, and funeral associations have been quick to embrace these changes, while others have very much refused to. Evolution is a necessary step towards progression. If there is anything we have learned as a species, and as a people, it is that change is the driving force in society, and that those who embrace change or facilitate it, tend to be the ones who drive us forward.

While the funeral industry has remained fairly unchanged for decades, it is now being forced to reevaluate an antiquated system that no longer serves everyone. Everyone has the right to choose how they would like to leave this world, and many people are seeking an alternative way of doing things that suits their needs and wishes. While limitations still exist in the Quebec area, many cemeteries all over the world are taking notice of this shift in people´s last wishes.

In Sherbrooke, a natural cemetery has been created which allows for the planting of a Bios Urn, and other natural methods. François Fouquet is the general manager of Coopérative funéraire de l’Estrie, and is behind the most recent natural burial ground in the area. ”It is very popular. People are more and more conscious of the mark they are leaving behind, and I think there is a lot of potential in these new models,” said Fouquet. There is also an urns-only natural cemetery in Prévost, in the Laurentians, which opened in 2009.

When we first developed the Bios Urn in 1997, we weren´t sure how people across the globe would react. When we finally decided to launch the Bios Urn in 2013, we knew we would face opposition, and that it wouldn´t always be easy, but we were committed to making it happen, and introducing a new product that we truly believed in.

What we hope is that the Bios Urn continues to be apart of an open dialogue around more sustainable and environmentally respectful burial methods, and that user-driven preferences help lead the way towards this much needed paradigm shift.


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