Cremains can be stored in multiple ways and numerous different places. For example, a cremation urn is a beautiful way to keep a loved one's ashes at home. Alternatively, there are safe methods for converting ashes into different materials, scattering them over land or sea, and more. Here are a few traditional ways to attend to your loved one’s cremains.

5 Options for Handling Cremains

1. Placing in a Columbarium

A columbarium is a room or freestanding structure where you can place cremation urns. Include photographs and items that belonged to your loved one to personalize their niche and memorialize them for generations.

2. Planting a Tree

Living urns are becoming more common because you can combine ashes with soil to make a new life. Ashes are already environmentally friendly, so you can go the extra mile by using your loved one's cremains to plant a tree. You and your family can watch the plant grow throughout the years as a testament to your loved one’s strong roots and fondness for nature.

3. Burying in a Plot

After a memorial ceremony, you may place your loved one’s cremains in a cemetery plot as you would a casket. Alternatively, you could place them in an area that was special to them or sacred in their religion.

4. Storing in an Urn

Cremation urnsKeep your loved one with you by placing their ashes in a cremation urn in your home. Choose a high shelf to keep them out of reach of children and pets, or place them among their favorite objects as a remembrance.

5. Scattering

Scatter ashes somewhere that mattered most to the person, like a park they frequented or the beach. Also, consider scattering the cremains at destinations around the world that they weren't able to visit with you. There are places where it's illegal to scatter ashes, so look up the local laws before you do so.


Deciding where to place your loved one's ashes can be difficult, so work with professionals who can address your concerns and answer your questions. At Shirley Brothers Mortuaries & Crematory in Indianapolis, IN, you'll find a compassionate, experienced team who will work with you through this challenging time. Whether you wish to have a funeral service, a memorial, or a cremation service, they will provide the highest level of attention. Learn more about their services, including their 24/7 grief and counseling services, online. Call (317) 897-9606 to request a consultation.