Part of the fun of gardening is sharing the bounty of your organic harvest with people you love (or at least like enough to be sociable with), and now that the holidays are right around the corner, now is the perfect time to plan those gifts out!
Here are some of my favorite holiday gifts from the garden — some of these I’ve created and gifted before, and others have been on my well-meaning to-do list for several years now. Maybe this is the year I do them all!
Holiday Gift Ideas: Personalized Preserves
Give the gift of organic during the holiday season by sharing your preserved organic harvest with your loved ones.
Preserved Fruits & Veggies:
Nothing is easier than this because you probably already have it done! Did you have a bumper crop of tomatoes, peppers, or figs? If you’ve already preserved your harvest in mason jars, simply add a pretty holiday-colored ribbon around each jar and finish with a homemade label. And don’t forget the canned salsa that you made — package it up with a bag of gourmet chips, and your friends will love you forever.
This is a non-food gift for another gardener on your list. Do you have extra agave pups, iris bulbs, perennial divisions, or wildflower seeds from your garden? Put them in a cute box or envelope and gift them to someone who needs more plants. You know your neighbor has been eyeing your sedum, don’t you? Time to spread the love and tidy up your garden all at the same time. That’s what I call a win-win.
After drying your herbs, package them individually as gifts in small jars, or combine several to make tasty herb mixes that are ideal for cooking. Dried onion, garlic, rosemary, thyme — do a quick Internet search on delicious combinations, then package away!
I’ve done this one several times over, and it’s always a hit! Use the recipe of your choice by adding berries, herbs, fruits, peppers, and even garlic and peppers to vodka, gin, tequila, or rum. There are a ton of instructional videos and articles online, and it’s easy and inexpensive to do. Add a festive ribbon to the bottle and you’re good to go!
Flavored Oils & Vinegar:
You’ll want to check out specific recipes for these gifts, but the basics are the same: simply add herbs to olive oil or vinegar, allow to steep for the appropriate time, then strain the herbs out. The result is a delightful but typically subtle flavor blend that is fun to experiment with in the kitchen.