One of the very best things about Christmas is the gift giving, and how much nicer if those gifts come from the heart as homemade treats? The garden is a great source of material for unique homemade gifts. That’s what we have been doing this week. The Genus fruit and vegetable garden provided us with the chance to make:
- Herbal sugars:add fresh herbs to jars of sugar, after 2 weeks the sugar imparts great flavour to drinks and baking
- Jams and jellies: blackcurrant jam has been this year’s major hit, we had such a large crop
- Pickles:we persevered the best of the salad crops tomatoes, and made pickles out of tomatoes, nasturtium capers, and cucumbers.
- Fruit liqueurs: we wrote a blog about this a couple of months back. Now we can gift delicious blackcurrant rum, redcurrant vodka and rhubarb schnapps.
- Pressed and pasteurised home grown apple juice, a brilliant new discovery. This year our Genus apples were sent to Richard Padget at myapplejuice.com who returned our own bottled juice.
The flower garden has been press-ganged into use for making other presents and seasonal decorations:
- Packets of seeds: given to our gardening friends, home saved seeds from those plants most coveted and presented in pretty packets
- Christmas tree decorations: silver spray paint the most ornamental seed heads from the garden to add as decorations to the tree
- Christmas wreath: cornus prunings (willow is traditionally used) twisted together into a wreath decorated with sprigs of holly and the trimmed lower branches of the Christmas tree
We have really enjoyed creating so much Christmas cheer from the garden, wellbeing lifted all round. Now back to fulfilling our Christmas orders for gardening clothes!