Graphic image of a person buried in a cemetery, with a tree growing out of their burial spot.
Dead Serious

Tree pod burial—the seeds of something wonderful

Dead Serious

Tree pod burial—the seeds of something wonderful

“Things will go as they will; and there is no need to hurry to meet them.”

  • “Treebeard” in Tolkien, J. R. R. (1954). The Two Towers (First Edition, Ser. The Lord of the Rings). George Allen & Unwin). 

You’ve done the math and you’ve come to the conclusion that you don’t want a traditional funeral. It’s understandable. Traditional burials can be mad expensive. Plus, they can take a heavy toll on the environment, giving nothing back to the soil except leaking chemicals. So you’re interested in another, greener option. 

Enter tree pod burials. Think of it like a coffee pod, but instead of a coffee-machine, it goes into the ground and instead of coffee grounds, it’s full of your…well, you. So what goes into a burial in a tree pod? And how much does it cost? We’re gonna go out on a limb…and get to the root of everything (the puns only get worse from here, I will not apologize).

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In this article

  1. Traditional burial issues
  2. Burial in a tree pod–how’s it work?
  3. What are the benefits of a tree pod burial?
  4. Things to keep in mind
  5. Tree pod burial locations
  6. Is a tree pod burial right for you?
  7. TL; DR

Traditional burial issues

We won’t do the whole recap, but it’s safe to say that traditional burials come with a lot of issues, both for the environment and your wallet. From the chemicals that leak into the ground, to the amount of wood and metal used, to even the issue of land-use, old-school casket burials take from the ground more than they give.

Because of this, more people in recent years have explored various green burial options that are both respectful to families and the earth. While there’s various options, tree pods have seen a surge in interest and for good reason.

Burial in a tree pod–how’s it work?

Burial in a tree pod is a possible solution to the above problems, while also being eco-friendly overall. But what goes into it all? (other than you, of course). The process is pretty simple.

Your body or ashes are placed inside of a pod or capsule of some kind. Inside that capsule is a seed or a sapling. As your remains decay, the pod converts that into nutrients which, in turn, feed the seed’s growth into a full tree.

Tree pod burial costs and other benefits

Being buried in a tree pod comes with a good amount of benefits.

  1. Environmental impact: By utilizing biodegradable materials, tree pod burials avoid the chemicals and material usage of a traditional burial. That helps make it a more eco-friendly option than an old-school casket.
  2. Land-use efficiency: An oft discussed problem with traditional burials is land-use, as cemeteries become too crowded. Plus the amount of water needed for lawn care, etc. Tree pod burials means more efficient use of space, and the possibility of things such as urban forests or even reforestation efforts in place of traditional graveyards.
  3. Sentimental impact: Burial in a tree pod can even create an intimate way to remember your loved one. Family members can watch the tree grow over the years as it is nourished by someone they cared for.
  4. A lasting legacy: A tree pod burial can also mean you’re leaving behind a positive impact on your environment, a testament to the life you lived.
  5. Cost: Tree pod burial costs are much cheaper. A basic biodegradable urn could cost you between $129 - $199, far less than the $2,500 you’d spend on a metal casket. 

Things to keep in mind

This all sounds great right? “What’s the catch?” you may be asking yourself. Well, not as much as you might think. Burial in a tree pod does come with a lot of benefits. There’s also some things to consider.

Right now commercially available biodegradable urns are on the market. Whole-body pods or capsules are currently being developed, but aren’t commercially available. Which means you still have to deal with the cost of cremating.

Tree pod burial locations

Tree growth is not an exact science. According to Science Daily, 18% of tree saplings die within the first year and 44% die within the first five years. However, that depends on the site and species. Also of note: home burials are legal in all states except Arkansas, California, Indiana, Louisiana, Washington state, and the District of Columbia. It’s important to do research on both the species you want, where the desire tree pod burial location will be and what local and state regulations you may be subject to.

Is a tree pod burial right for you?

At the end of the day, it comes down to what you think is right for you, your family and even the kind of legacy you want to “leaf” behind (get it?). “Branch-out” into a new sustainable and eco-friendly afterlife, a testament to the circle of life. You’d have to be a “sap” to not even think about it.

At Wyshbox, we’re all about granting the wyshes of the people who get left behind. Whether that’s seeing their family member become a magnificent tree, pay for a child’s future education or just get the mortgage paid, your Wyshbox policy can grow with you and your needs. Take a look at our free Wysh Builder tool—we promise you won’t get stumped.


  1. Burial in a tree pod can be an eco-friendly way to honor a loved one.
  2. They’re typically cheaper than traditional burials and designed to be better for the environment. A biodegradable urn can cost you between $129 - $199
  3. Tree growth is not a certainty, so it’s important to be aware of species, location and replanting rates in your area.
The opinions we expressed in this post are for general informational purposes only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations.