Cremation "Planturn" Vessels Support New Life, and the Kickstarter is Greening Up Nicely

It sometimes takes a brush with death to realize that something’s amiss with the conventional funeral industry’s design sense. Los Angeles woodworker C.C. Boyce was already engaged in designing modular planters when a friend processing her father’s death asked for a custom urn to hold the cremated remains. Boyne put it all together with a cavity for bagged ashes at the bottom, and space for potted plant up top.


When she posted a nice photo of the urn to Instagram, she was quickly flooded with inquiries. Today, she’s halfway to goal on her new business Kickstarter.

According to Boyce’s website, the studio sources wood from two local businesses, a family owned lumberyard and a company that intercepts fallen local trees and transforms them into lumber. Each urn is finished with a low VOC, natural matte finish. Nice.

There are other products on the market similar in concept: The Bonsai Urn is still worth a look. And the Living Urn, which seems to be selling nicely, is best for pets as it takes several vessels to hold the four pounds of remains that comprise or represent a full human being.


Nothing can change the fact that gas-fueled cremation is still not without its carbon footprint (though in your lifetime of crimes against the planet, the worst thing you can ever do is own a second home). Ask your funeral director where the cremation is going to take place, do your research, and request a crematory that is busy (hot all day, thereby fuel efficient), and regularly inspected by your local air quality authority. (Interesting to note: The EPA, or what’s left of it, never inspected crematories because the waste produced is human, and not industrial.) Also, find out if you’re in one of the 17 states that has legalized alkaline hydrolysis. And see if a simple green burial is within your means and sensible to your family members.

It’s impossible to discuss all this without also noting that human composting just took a dramatic leap forward thanks to the hard work and determination of Katrina Space and her energetic team in Washington state. By the time those of you under the age of fifty are old and gray, it will likely be a whole new scene out there!