Frequently Asked Questions

How do I obtain a burial permit if I am not working with a funeral home?

Some people under hospice care choose to spend their final days at home. In some cases, families who have chosen hybrid green burial, look to have their loved one come directly from home to the cemetery.  All interments require a disposition of human remains, also known as a burial permit, so the question is how a burial permit is obtained if the family is not working with a funeral home.

If the decedent passes away in Yolo County in their residence, and the family does not wish to use a funeral home, a PDF copy of the death certificate is completed between the family and the attending physician. The attending physician would need to sign off on the causes of death, and the family would fill out the decedent’s personal information. Once the record is complete, the family would contact the Vital Records office, for re-creation into the Electronic Death Registration System. The information would be uploaded into the system and then registered at which time a burial permit would be issued. The family would pick up the burial permit from the Vital Record office located in Woodland, CA and bring it to the Davis Cemetery at the time of burial.

This is a complex process which is why we recommend working with a funeral home.



What can be included on a niche cover plate?

A niche cover plate can include names, dates, quotes, symbols, international lettering/characters, as well as simple clip art (shown below). Black and white & color photos can also be included for an additional $250 per photo.

Cache Creek monument company handles all shutter cover engraving. Engraving requests should be emailed to your cemetery staff contact who will respond with a proof prior to authorizing the engraving.


When interring cremains, are any documents required?

Yes, a disposition of human remains, otherwise known as a burial permit is required for all interments. If you elected to inter at the cemetery at the time your loved one was cremated, you should have been provided the burial permit. If you have been storing the cremains and have now decided to inter, you will need to obtain a burial permit from Yolo County. Below are the steps for obtaining a burial permit.

If the cremains/remains are legally interred in Yolo County, you will need to contact:

Yolo County Clerk/Recorder’s Office
Vital Registration Section
625 Court Street, Room B-01
Woodland, CA 95695

PHONE: (530) 666-8680

Please call to schedule an appointment before coming into the office. The entire process will take approximately 15 minutes.

You will need to bring a copy of the original burial permit and a certified copy of the death certificate and the name and address of the new place of disposition with you when you visit our office to obtain the new permit.

Can I place metal lawn/garden decorations on a plot?

Metal lawn/garden decorations create a serious safety hazard for our visitors and staff in the event they are hit during turf maintenance. Metal decorations must be placed on the monument or cement border and cannot be placed in the ground.

What is the process of closing a grave?
  • Once interment has occurred and the family has left the immediate area, cemetery employees will begin the backfill process. 
  • Graves are backfilled the same day, by close of business. Cemetery employees will start by backfilling with fill dirt. 
  • Any flowers left after the service will be placed on the grave along with a temporary name marker. 
  • Over the next 10 days, cemetery staff will add fill dirt as the grave settles and reseed for turf. 
  • Depending on the season, location in the cemetery, and wildlife, grass will begin to re-grow in 30 – 120 days.
  • If a headstone was removed in order to accommodate a 2nd interment, it will remain in our yard for 30 days in order for the grave to properly settle.
  • Once you have ordered a headstone, the monument company will contact our office to schedule installation.    
  • Inground vases can be placed to the left and right of the headstone and are available for purchase in the cemetery office.
What is the process of opening a grave?
  • The district requires a 48-hour notice to open a grave. If interment must occur prior to the 48-hour notice for religious reasons, we will do our best to accommodate the request. 
  • If the grave has already had an interment take place, the headstone will be removed and placed in our yard.
  • Plywood will be placed over the gravesite until the morning of the service at which time the grounds crew will remove the plywood and set up the graveside service as requested. 
  • Graveside service setup will be completed one hour prior to the start of the service. 
  • At least one cemetery employee will be onsite during the graveside service to assist the family.
What is a water cremation?

A water cremation, also known as alkaline hydrolysis, is an alternative to burial or traditional cremation by fire. In alkaline hydrolysis, the body is placed in a ‘water chamber’ and broken down by a combination of water, heat and a strong alkali. After the cremation process, the family is given an urn for burial or to keep at home. Pisces is one company that offers alkaline hydrolysis services in our area. The district will continue to research other companies in our area that offer this service as they become available.

What is human composting?

AB-531 is a law that makes human composting legal in the state beginning 2027. Human composting is also referred to as natural organic reduction. At this time, we have not received any additional information regarding how this law will be implemented in our region.

Is the Davis Cemetery District a Veterans only cemetery?

No. While we do offer Veteran interment options, the regional Veterans cemetery is the Sacramento Valley National Cemetery, located in Dixon, CA.


5810 Midway Road
Dixon, CA 95620

Phone: 707-693-2460
FAX: 707-693-2479

Are dogs allowed on cemetery property?

Dogs are welcome on our grounds as long as they remain on a leash at all times. There are waste receptacles throughout the cemetery and dog owners are expected to clean up after their pet.

How do I find a grave?

There are several ways to locate a loved one.

  • Utilize our burial search tool found here
  • Visit our office M-F 8am – 3pm and speak with any staff member for assistance
  • Call (530) 756-7807 and we can provide you the location over the phone
How large can my urn be for a niche wall interment?

A single urn can measure 10.5″ x 10.5″ x 10.5″

Two urns can measure 10.5″ x 10.5″ x 6″


What is Gallery 1855?

Gallery 1855 is a local gallery featuring a number of internationally recognized artists from the Cemetery district.  Located on the historic grounds of the Davis Cemetery District, it was named Gallery 1855 in honor of the first recorded interment. The gallery is open weekdays between 9:00am and 3:00pm.

How do I purchase a marker / monument for a grave?

You will work with a local monument company to design a marker. There are several monument companies in the area that have done extensive work at our facility. A complete listing can be found here.

Do you offer a payment plan?

Yes, the district offers a fiscal year (July – June) payment plan which provides up to 11.5 months to pay, depending on when you enter into contact and when the burial occurs. Payment must be made in full prior to the first burial.


If you enter into contact on July 1st, you have until June 15th of the following year to complete payment.

If you enter into contact on January 1st, you have until June 15th of the same year to complete payment.


What are my choices for above-ground burial?

The Davis Cemetery District offers two above-ground interment options. The first is our niche walls which can hold up to two sets of cremains in a single space. We have niche walls located at the memorial fountain and at the rose garden. The second option is our scattering garden. The District cannot accommodate above-ground casket interments.

What are my choices for in-ground burial?

The Davis Cemetery District offers a variety of in-ground plots for casket interment throughout our grounds, which can accommodate both casket and cremation burials. We also offer an area of smaller plots exclusively for cremation.

Can two caskets be interred in a single plot?

Yes, Companion burials, where two caskets are interred in a single plot, are becoming more and more popular. Almost all of our casket plots can accommodate companion burials.

What is a hybrid green burial?

Green (or natural) burial emphasizes simplicity and environmental sustainability. The body is neither cremated nor prepared with chemicals such as embalming fluids. The shrouded body or biodegradable container is lowered into the earth without the use of a burial vault. Earth is then packed directly around and over the body or container. The green burial option for either single or companion interments.

Embalmed bodies and/or those in non-biodegradable caskets, such as metal, are not eligible for the green burial option. Green burial is not an option for the second interment into a companion plot in which a companion vault is already in place.

The district has the distinction of “hybrid” because we reseed for turf and allow the placement or a traditional monument.

What payment options do you offer?

The district gladly accepts cash, checks, cashier checks, Visa, and MasterCard.

How can I be sure my burial wishes will be followed?

Entering into a pre-need contract is the best way to assure your burial wishes are followed. In the absence of this, clear, written instructions should be given to the person who will be responsible for your funeral and cemetery arrangements. In California, these written instructions are not legally binding. Under current law, the final decision will rest with your executor(s), even taking precedence over the nearest relative’s choice. It is important, therefore, to choose a person whom you can trust to carry out your wishes.

Do I have to use a funeral director?

No, you are not required to use a funeral director. California law permits people to look after arrangements themselves, provided all legal requirements (permits, certificates, etc.) are met.


What will happen to the remaining interment spaces when I die?

Interment rights held by a person who dies become part of the estate of the deceased. It is, therefore, important to contact the Davis Cemetery District as soon as possible following the death of the interment rights holder to establish burial rights.

May I sell interment rights to someone else?

No. The Cemeteries Act prohibits the private resale of interment rights. You may, however, transfer your interment rights to a third party. This would require you to surrender your plot deed to the Davis Cemetery District so the transfer of ownership may be properly documented.

If the interment rights holder chooses to sell his/her interment rights back to the District, the District will refund the original purchase price, less the endowment fee paid. For plots purchased in sections A-N, which were less than $500 at the time of purchase, the District will provide a flat refund of $500. Again, the endowment fee is non-refundable.

Please contact our staff for further details.

May I designate the future use of my interment rights now?

You may designate for future use of both interment space and inscription space on an existing memorial. Allocations may be changed or canceled at any time by the current interment rights holder(s). Again, any such allocation must meet the eligibility requirements as set forth in the California Health and Safety Code.

Can someone other than the interment rights holder be interred in a grave?

Yes. Anyone may be interred in any grave with the permission of the interment rights holder(s) provided they meet the eligibility requirements laid out in the California Health and Safety Code.

What is the difference between the various types of ownership?

The Davis Cemetery District offers a variety of ownership types.

Sole Ownership: Sole ownership means one individual, the interment rights holder, owns the interment rights. Upon the death of the interment rights holder, his/her estate retains ownership of the interment rights. Any future interments, transfers, etc., would require legal documentation to be filed with the District.

Joint Ownership: Joint ownership is when there are two or more individuals owning interment rights. Upon the death of an interment rights holder, the surviving interment rights holder, his/her estate retains ownership of the interment rights. Again, any further activity with these interment rights will require the filing of legal documentation with the District once the final interment holder has passed. Legal requirements and the Cemeteries Act require us to obtain written authorization from the interment rights holder(s) for permission and/or direction before any interment rights can be utilized.

Trust Ownership: Trust ownership is when a person purchases plots and places the plot within their trust. The executor of the trust holds the interment rights of the plots.

May more than one person own the interment rights on the same grave?

Yes, interment rights can be owned by more than one person. A second interment rights holder can be added at the time of plot purchase or at a later date. Interment rights can also be placed in the name of a trust. Trust documentation must be provided to the district to ensure appropriate designations are being followed.

May I leave a candle burning at the grave?

You are welcome to light a candle or incense while visiting the grave-site, provided you extinguish it and take it away with you. Please do not leave a burning candle or incense at the grave when you leave. An unattended flame poses a great safety hazard to both visitors and staff, as well as to the surrounding property. Glass and plastic candle holders left on the grave will be removed. Such items are easily broken and pose a safety hazard.

May I put flowers on my grave?

Natural and artificial flowers may be placed on graves providing appropriate containers and Agrosoke are used. Please use plastic containers, as glass or pottery is easily broken and becomes a safety hazard to both visitors and staff. Flower containers should not extend beyond the headstone area. During mild weather, district employees mow the turf areas at least once a week and must be able to operate the large riding mowers efficiently. This often means removing large floral arrangements that spill over beyond the vicinity of the monument. Please note that mosquito control regulations require that Agrosoke gel must be kept in all containers at all times. It lasts for more than a year and we will replace it when it needs to be replaced. You can get the gel for free from our office.

May I put a small hedge or fence around my grave?

In ground plantings, fencing, or other perimeter markers are not permitted.

How soon after an interment may I place a memorial?

The memorial can be ordered as early or as late as you like however, we recommend waiting at least 2 weeks to give the ground time to adequately settle.

Are memorial markers required on a grave?

No. The Davis Cemetery District does not mandate the placement of a marker or monument on a grave site. In general we do not permit the placement of a marker or monument on a grave site until at least one interment has been done into the plot in question. Should a family choose to have a marker or monument installed on a plot, the District reserves the right to regulate the size and most aspects of how the monument is set. Please contact the office for up-to-date marker regulations. The California Health and Safety Code prohibits public cemeteries from participating in the sale of markers and monuments.

What is included in the interment fee?

The interment fee includes administration and permanent record-keeping (determining ownership, obtaining permission and the completion of other documentation which may be required, entering interment particulars in the interment register, maintaining all legal files); opening and closing the grave (locating the grave and laying out the boundaries, excavating and filling the interment space); leveling, tamping, re-grading and sodding of the grave-site; leveling and re-sodding of the grave after the earth settles. The fee also includes the use of chairs, canopy, podium, and AV needed for graveside service. Any other supplies/and or services which may be required at the time of an interment would be an additional cost.

What if I prefer casket burial, but my spouse prefers cremation?

A casket plot can accommodate both a casket and up to three sets of cremains. If the first to be interred is cremated, we do recommend the use of a cremation vault in order to protect the urn at the time of second interment.

How many cremated remains can be placed in a grave?

The Davis Cemetery District allows cremains to be placed in standard casket plots in addition to our cremation only plots. A casket plot can accommodate up to four sets of cremains and allow raised monuments to be placed. A small cremation plot can accommodate one set of cremains and is restricted to a flush marker. A large cremation plot can accommodate up to two sets of cremains and is restricted to a flush marker.


Is a casket required?

A casket is required for a standard burial. We do however offer a green burial option that does not require the use of a casket. Please see our green burial FAQ for additional details.

Does a body have to be embalmed before it is interred?

No, embalming is not a requirement in California. It is entirely your choice, and may depend on such factors as whether or not there will be an open casket with viewing of the body (currently NOT permitted on cemetery property); if the body is to be transported by air or rail; the length of time prior to interment, etc. Please note, if the family wishes to have a “green burial” we do not allow embalmed bodies.

What is the purpose of the Endowment Fee?

The Davis Cemetery District manages an Endowment Care Fund to ensure there will be resources available to maintain the cemetery in the future. The establishment and management of an endowment care program is mandated by the California Health and Safety Code. It is our objective to care for and maintain our cemetery in a manner in which the community can take pride. We set aside more than the minimum required by law, to ensure that essential services are provided at the standards you expect and to which you are entitled. Regular care and maintenance activities include: mowing turf, string trimming,  pruning trees and shrubs, repairing and expanding irrigation systems, roads and drainage systems, etc.

What is plot ownership?

When you purchase cemetery plots you are purchasing the right to designate who may be interred or entombed in the plot. The plot itself remains the property and responsibility of the District. A plot holder is often referred to as the interment rights holder. As the interment rights holder, you also have the right to place a marker or monument, the size of which is subject to District rules and regulation. All interment rights are subject to the cemetery rules and regulations, as well as the California Health and Safety Code.