Happy Holidays from Grow Appalachia HQ to you! Alix here, reporting on gift-giving. If you’re anything like me around the holidays, figuring out meaningful, inexpensive gifts to give to friends and family is half the fun. (The other half is spending time with those friends and family and eating all they good food they cook this time of year!) To give you some ideas, I’m compiling a list of ‘gifts from the garden’ you can make in your own home. (Did I mention they’re inexpensive, too?)
If you preserved any jellies or jams this year, spice them up with this herbal jelly recipe to give as a gift for the holidays.
If you’re deciding what to give that special baker in your life, try herbal sugar. It’s a fun way to flavor traditional recipes and could even be added to sweeten the herbal jelly recipe above. It does take around 2 weeks to make properly, though, so if you’re going to make this one, start today. Right now. As soon as you get done reading this blog!
Another herb-based opportunity for giving this season is herb-infused oil. This gift is great for a friend who’s always making stir-fry or fried green tomatoes, as the oils don’t last that long and need to be used within two months’ time. If you’re worried it looks too decorative, include a recipe card with the gift and encourage your friend or family member to try it out soon.
Up next: garden candles. This is one I really like and will be trying myself this weekend! I’ve got some very cute, stubborn flowers that refuse to give up for the winter that will be perfect for this project. You don’t just have to use flowers, though. Herbs, leaves, or even pine needles would work for this gift.
Of course, the best gift you can give from your garden is the gift that keeps on giving: saved seeds. You can give saved seeds as simply as including a packet of seeds in your holiday cards or as intricately as creating a seed scrapbook, complete with different seed packets stapled to each page with pictures and growing instructions. A gift of carefully selected, generations grown heirloom seeds might just be one of the most treasured gifts you can give.
If you’ve made your own gifts from the garden before, share your stories in the ‘Reply’ section below. If you try making any of these, share what you’ve learned and how it went! Everyone at Headquarters would love to see pictures of the gifts you make!