Sunday, March 23, 2014

Poetree: An Environmentally-Friendly Way to be Remembered

by Nomad

 John Kennedy once said,
 "Our most basic common link is that we all inhabit this planet. We all breathe the same air. We all cherish our children's future. And we are all mortal."   
With thoughts of mortality come thoughts about how we would like to be remembered after we are gone. The costs of funerals are astounding and, for some people, the whole idea of burial in cement vaults and steel coffin is offensive and absurd. 
More and more cemeteries require  tombstones to be flush to the ground to expedite the maintenance. Those beautiful sculptural monstrosities that the Victorians loved are long gone. Now all that's left to remember you is a flat square tile in the ground. That's it.
But all of us want to be remembered- at least to some extent- after we're gone.

I recently saw one product that neatly addresses this while touching upon each of the points Kennedy mentioned. It's called "Poetree" and it's a simple but wonderful idea.

Ashes of the deceased are placed in a biodegradable urn. The urn doubles as a planter for a tree. (The picture shows boxwood but I can't see why there couldn't be a selection. Personally I'd prefer a willow or maybe an olive tree.)
At the base of the tree, there is a ceramic ring with the name and dates of the "loved one" and again, I suppose it could be further personalized as well. For urban dwellers, the boxwood tree could be decorative, I guess, but knowing my friends, it would end up being a handy ashtray or trash can.

Eventually, the tree could be moved to some open location and planted into the ground and, as time passes, form forests.
The minimalist concept comes from the mind of French designer Margaux Ruyan from DSK ISD International School of Design (India).