The Green Burial Ground of Countryside is a Sacred, Peaceful Place.
The Burial Site
In keeping with Green Burial Ground standards, all burials occur at a depth of approximately 3 to 3½ feet and have a 2-3 foot mound of earth above them. This depth ensures that the nutrient layer is raised to a higher soil stratum where microbes and oxygen can expedite the decomposition process. Each burial is covered by approximately 60 inches of soil and is undetectable to human or animal noses (with the exception of bears, which are not an issue in Texas). This practice accommodates the natural settling of the ground above the grave.
Participation by Family
Families are welcome to participate in the partial or complete closing of the grave. Please tell us if you’d like to do this and we’ll make sure a cemetery staff member is on hand to guide if needed.
Green Burial Ground Guidelines
To honor the beauty and integrity of the natural surroundings please respect the following guidelines:
Everything placed in the ground at Countryside Memorial Park must be of nontoxic, biodegradable materials that will return naturally to the earth.
Floral Displays and Decorations
Countryside welcomes fresh cut flowers that have had all non-biodegradable materials, such as plastic wrap and ribbons, removed. No glass or artificial plants/flowers please. Statues, Potted plants, toys, artwork, ornaments, chairs, or similar articles are permitted on special occasions, but may be removed by cemetery staff if not removed by families within a week. Countryside cannot be held responsible for any items left on graves.
We allow flat stone markers and are pleased to offer beautifully engraved natural stone markers. You may also provide your own from another professional provider. There are no permanently unmarked graves at Countryside, and we are requesting markers be purchased and set in place within 90 days.
Upright monuments and heavily cemented in markers are no longer being placed at Countryside. The existing monuments/markers/statues seen on the cemetery grounds are either a part of the Historic Beall Cemetery, have been placed by the management or have been “grandfathered” in.
Planting a Tree on the Gravesite
We allow the planting of a native tree or shrub on the gravesite and have a specific number of “tree-plots” available for purchase. Please check with us first for written approval of the type of planting you intend and exactly where you intend to plant it. We can help you arrange for the purchase and installation of the plant, but we offer no “perpetual care services” and are not responsible for the well being of the plant.
Burial Shrouds and Containers
All burial shrouds and containers must be 100% biodegradable and nontoxic. No metal caskets or fasteners, synthetic linings, formaldehyde glues, and high VOC (volatile organic compounds) finishes are prohibited. All caskets must be constructed from wood, grasses, reeds, bamboo, or other natural materials. All burial shrouds must be made of natural plant or animal fibers. Outer burial containers, such as concrete liners, metal vaults, partitions, and slabs, are prohibited.
Embalming or toxic chemicals are not allowed at Countryside. Eco-embalming is acceptable in cases as indicated.