Fernwood is one of the country’s first environmentally conscious green cemeteries where land stewardship and restoration is integrated with cemetery and burial ritual. Green, or natural, burial here means no embalming or chemicals of any kind, no grave-liners or vaults and only biodegradable burial containers such as a plain pine box, wicker casket or a fabric shroud.
As part of our land stewardship we do not allow traditional cut and polished headstones or bronze markers but a small natural boulder can be engraved and used as a marker. Some families choose simply to blend into the hillside allowing each tree, flower, songbird and butterfly to become a memorial to a loved one and a hope for the future. Fernwood is a consecrated place where the living and the dead are connected through cycles of nature, memory and conservation.
In a synergistic blend, we use both a simple nature based approach as well as the latest technology. Each grave is mapped using Global Positioning Systems (GPS) and every burial is marked with an identification device to ensure their loved ones can find their location. Our commitment is to save natural resources and preserve native plants and animals. As a National Wildlife Federation Certified Habitat our landscape provides food, water, cover and places for our native animals to raise their young.
The beautiful 32-acre Fernwood site is located in Mill Valley, California, adjacent to the golden Gate national Recreation Area and just minutes from Mt. Tamalpais State Park with easy access from Highway 101.
The land at Fernwood is comprised of a patchwork of grassland, brush, mixed forests, and riparian drainages. It is a dynamic environment of rapidly changing weather exposed to fog, winds and sun, seasonal rain, and dry summers.
The land is hilly and located on the shaded north slope of a long ridge that extends from uplifted marine terraces known as the Marin Headlands. The cemetery lands drain toward the salt-water marsh of Tennessee Valley and Coyote Creek meanders along the base of the mountain.
We invite you to visit us, meet with a member of our team, and take a guided walk around Fernwood. Please call for an appointment 415.383.7100.