By: Susan Albert, Freelance Garden Writer
Do you have fellow gardening friends with a gift occasion coming up? Or maybe you know friends who might like to start gardening. Whatever the reason – birthday, Christmas, just because – you can make these simple, useful, DIY garden presents that will brighten the day of every recipient.
DIY Christmas Gifts for Gardeners
Most of these gift ideas for garden lovers are inexpensive to make. Gift baskets will cost more, depending on how much is inside, but cheap filler for baskets can be shredded paper or reused tissue paper that is bunched up. Here are some ideas to spark your creative juices:
- Decorative clay pots. Purchase or upcycle clay pots and paint. Use leftover craft paints in your storage box or buy them at craft stores. Add seed packets and tie raffia around the perimeter of the container and tie with a bow.
- Upcycle tin cans from the recycle bin. Use craft paints in different colors. Add some potting mix and annual plants such as marigolds for spring and summer or pansies for fall and winter. To make a hanging set, punch two holes on opposite sides near the top with a hammer and nail (to prevent the can from distorting, first fill the can ¾ full of water and freeze solid.). For each pot, insert a length of colorful yarn and tie at each hole.
- Stepping stones. To make round or square stepping stones, buy baking pans or molds at garage sales or second-hand stores. Purchase a bag of quick-drying cement. Follow directions on package to mix the cement. Spray pans with baker’s vegetable spray and fill with cement. Before it dries, add decorative pieces you have on hand, such as pebbles or mosaic tile pieces. Or press leaves and ferns into the wet cement to make an imprint.
- Windowsill herb garden. For a creative windowsill herb garden, containers could come from tin cans (painted), clay pots, or inexpensive plastic pots. Fill with potting soil and small herbs or grow seedlings yourself (if you plan ahead). Easy-to-grow herbs include parsley, sage, oregano, and thyme.
- Painted stones for plant markers. Great for any gardener, plants markers and labels are always useful and welcomed. You may have to be inquisitive and find out what plants they are growing. Or if you don’t know, mark several stones with herb names, then provide the seeds to go with them.
- Seed starter-themed gift basket. Fill an inexpensive woven basket (or plant container) with gardening gloves, peat pots, vegetable or flower packet seeds, trowel, plant labels, and a small bag of potting soil.
- Pollinator-themed gift basket. Choose a fun container like a wire basket or wood box (or plant container) and fill with hummingbird feeder, recipe for hummingbird nectar (1 part sugar to 4 parts water, stir to dissolve, no boiling needed, keep refrigerated up to two weeks), seed packets for nectar flowers such as tithonia, zinnia, and marigolds plus pocket butterfly field guide, host plant seed packets such as parsley, fennel, rue, milkweed, and a homemade bee house.
- Bird-themed gift basket. Choose a basket (or plant container) and fill with a small birdhouse, wire suet feeder plus suet bricks to fit, bird pocket field guide, and recycled jar filled with birdseed.
- Holiday cactus plants. Great for Christmas or Thanksgiving, in the spring, break off segments of your Christmas or Thanksgiving cactus and start new plants. Then in December, wrap the pots in gift foil and secure with ribbon and a bow for DIY Christmas gifts for gardeners or anyone.
- Terrarium kit. Use a quart-sized canning jar or small glass container with lid. Fill the bottom about one inch with small pebbles or decorative rock. Include a small bag of activated charcoal (found at stores with fish-keeping supplies) and a small bag of potting soil. Include an index card with instructions. The recipient only needs to add small plants. Here are the terrarium instructions: Line the jar with a layer of pebbles. Then add a layer of activated charcoal to keep it fresh. Fill with enough moist potting soil to cover the roots of chosen plants. Add humidity-loving small houseplants (do not use succulents). If desired, add decorative elements such as rocks, bark, or seashells. Occasionally vent the jar. Water lightly if soil begins to dry.
Homemade gifts for gardeners will be a welcome surprise for anyone on your gift list. Get started today!
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