Grave digging DIY

Grave digging DIY: Yes, you can. Recently a family nearby bought a coffin from us and buried on their own land. Here’s how they prepared the gravesite. For readers just joining in, we are Piedmont Pine Coffins in North Carolina, USA. We spread the news about natural burial, and we make pine box coffins with only […]

Spider time & death-positive conferences

These are the days of the large orb weavers at Melleray Farmstead, cottage industrial home to Piedmont Pine Coffins. At dusk their webs are everywhere stretched across paths and under eaves and in corners. You root for them, except when you find them with your face in the morning. The orb weavers at the tail […]

The Eagles!

Just in time for July 4th, here’s a post about Eagles. Not the Hotel California Eagles, but Gandalf’s Eagles and our eagles at Piedmont Pine Coffins. If you’ve ever read J.R.R. Tolkien or seen the movies based on his Hobbit and Lord of the Rings books, you know that giant eagles are his deus ex machina. Sort of. Or at least, […]

Late to the toxic burial party

What one Johnny from SC sent me last week makes me feel like a johnny-come-lately. For memory’s sake, we are Piedmont Pine Coffins. Since August 2013, we promote simpler, greener burial options and help families reclaim the power of caring for our own dead. But how about since 2001? Forester and biologist Johnny Stowe sent me […]

What a good death is

A good death, I told a recent client. Your mom died a good death. “Yes, I think so. Thank you,” she said. Death is having a moment in popular culture. (To be clear, death is always having its moment, isn’t it, just not always as a media darling.) So what’s a good death, and is […]

Six feet under is too deep

Six feet under is too deep for a green burial. I’ll demonstrate with a recent animal burial from Melleray Farmstead. For those of you just joining in, Melleray Farmstead is the cottage industrial home of Piedmont Pine Coffins. Here in the summer-lush piedmont of central NC, we live off the grid and have animals and […]

Green burial cemetery — what is it?

So what is a green burial cemetery? It’s come up in conversation lately because I’ve been asking family members, How do you want to be buried? Trying, as I should, to walk the talk of a green burial advocate — and plan ahead! One relative said he’d prefer to be buried in a green burial cemetery. […]

It’s illegal, plus other green burial myths

Interested in a simple pine box coffin? It’s illegal, goes one of the top green burial myths. Who wants to be a scofflaw for all eternity? We better look into this and find out. For those readers just joining in, we are Piedmont Pine Coffins. At our cottage industrial home, the off-grid Melleray Farmstead in […]

Burial vs cremation: WWJBD?

In burial vs cremation, which is greener? Well, WWJBD? No, that’s not James Brown. No, not Jimmy Buffet either. Nor Justin Bieber, Johann Sebastian Bach, or Jessica Biel. Not Joan Baez. Not Jennifer Lopez, either. I just like her, that’s why. Not Jason Bourne. Not Jack Bauer or Joe Biden. Not Julie Byrne. What would James […]

The tree funeral in China and America

What is a tree burial, and how do you plan a tree funeral? Green burial, of course, isn’t confined to the West, and America isn’t the only superpower with environmental concerns. Turns out China needs green burial too. With land for cemeteries at a premium, and with traditional burial costs rising, some Chinese are complaining they […]

Green Burial Information Session Earth Day 2014

Piedmont Pine Coffins is hosting a green burial information session at the Chatham County library in Pittsboro, NC. We chose Earth Day (Tue 22 April) to celebrate the more environmentally friendly options available with green burial. We will meet in the Holmes Room at 6:00 pm. Attendees will get to hear, in broad strokes, what […]

Green burial New York publicity push

The omphalos of it all — NYC — now knows green burial, thanks to Amy Cunningham. With her recent premium publicity, she IS green burial New York. Amy is the blogger and funeral director behind The Inspired Funeral. She has put together a mighty fine collection of links for someone who wants a primer on […]

Coffin Decoration — The Personal Touch

When it comes to coffin decoration, how can you lend that personal touch? Rich in NC recently sent me this photo, right. It’s the lid of his sister Beth’s coffin (constructed by Piedmont Pine Coffins). Note the finishing details: The cross of iron hand-wrought by a family friend The flowers painted by a neighbor close to […]

Green Burial interest meeting hosted by FCAP

Piedmont Pine Coffins visited Greensboro last week to attend a meeting hosted by the Funeral Consumers Alliance of the Piedmont. The meeting was convened by the Green Burial Interest subcommittee. Funeral Consumers Alliance of the Piedmont There were two main topics:  1)  a report from a couple who’d recently taken part in a green burial on […]