DIY Gifts for Mom, the Gardener
Plenty of online sites and brick and mortar stores carry handsome and interesting gifts that target the outdoor enthusiast and gardener. You can do many of the same projects at home for a fraction of the cost, or try purely homemade ideas with the whole family. Many of these carry on an important principle of sustainability and recycling, lessons we all hope to teach our families. Additionally, DIY gifts are economical and fun projects in which all family members can participate.
Homemade gardening gift ideas run from the very easy to more complex items. You need a starting point or main idea, the basic tools and then let your creativity run wild. Plants are a passion for the gardener so why not make them a unique composite planter. Combine herbs, make a succulent and cacti pot, forced bulbs, really anything that the giftee will respond to favorably. These planters are a fraction of the cost of florist displays and last longer. You can really personalize them by planting in unusual spaces such as succulents in baby boots, old kitchen containers, small old children's desks, the sky's the limit. You can also create a fantastic statement by using re-puposed items for plant stands. For instance, use an old wooden chair freshly painted with the seat removed to hold a same size pot full of bright spring blooms. Personalizing a container for grandma couldn't be easier for kids. Give them ceramic paints or use chalk paint on a pot and let them use their imaginations. It's fun and exciting for kids to contribute to gift giving.
Any items that will help the avid gardener get their veggie patch off the ground will be well appreciated. Small burlap bags full of seed you have saved from your favorite plants and tied with ribbon are thoughtful and good ways to share something special. Try making mini garden kits of peat or coir pots, a small bag of starter soil, seed packets and tags all in a wooden crate lined with muslin or a basket filled with straw and topped with a bow. Use the pint sized canning jar and line it inside with peat moss. Fill it with water and insert clippings or cuttings for starts of some of your favorite plants. Wrap a bow around and commemorate the species with a cute tag. Make cute plant markers out of stones the kids have painted or for a more sophisticated look, antique silver spoons.
Gift baskets never go out of style and don't necessarily have to be in a basket. Make a collection of items in an old colander, wooden produce crate, or even the garden staple, a 5 gallon bucket. Paint the outside to freshen the container up and personalize with any artwork you would like. Nestle the items into coir, peat or any other compostable rustic material. Items to choose might include; garden gloves, new hand tools, seeds, gardeners lotion, plant ties, belt clip, kneeling cushion, small calendar or handheld notebook, bulbs, seasonal seed potatoes, onions or garlic, or anything else for which your gardener would be grateful. Make it special with unique touches only you and your family can contribute.
Most gardeners are concerned about the environment and would love a homemade, non-toxic pesticide or herbicide. Many recipes are available online but here is one for an herbicide. In a cool old glass jug mix 1/2 gallon white vinegar, 1/2 cup salt and 2 tablespoons dishwashing liquid. Attach a cute colorful spray bottle to the top or handle of the jug for easy use by your favorite gardener. For a full range of organic pest control in a basket, add copper tape for slugs, fly tape for many flying insects, citronella candles,Neem oil and diatomaceous earth in an easy to use shaker bottle. Your gardener will be ready to do battle armed with these tools in the yard.
Decorating standard outdoor gardening items makes a great personal gift. Stencil and paint a watering can, Put cute fabric flower cutouts on a gardening apron, set the kids to work painting a kneeling cushion, pots or even a birdhouse. Make homemade votives for outside with tin cans. Use a hammer and a nail to poke holes in patterns and then paint the can. Add votive candles and a wire or fishing line handle so they can be hung in trees or strung across the patio. Tin cans also make cute planters for seed starts with a little paint and some holes punched in the bottom for drainage.
The numbers of homemade gifts you can make for the gardener are practically endless. It just depends on the depth of your imagination and the materials you have available. Consider the needs and likes of your gardener as you embark on your gift producing crusade. Permanency or garden size may be an issue with some gardeners so personalized decorated gardening pavers may not be appropriate. Suit the gift to the gardener and you can't go wrong with DIY gifts from the heart.
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