Posts tagged 'Christmas gifts for gardeners'
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!
We have written a number of blogs about how great gardening is for improving gardener’s general levels of health and fitness. Our health and wellbeing though, is not just a physical thing. There are many aspects of our health which relate to less tangible sides of our person. We are body, mind and spirit and none of these areas functions entirely alone; each can affect the other. In the kind of autumn we are experiencing this year, when the conditions have been just right to produce some simply amazing autumn colour, it’s easy to make a connection between garden beauty and that uplifting feeling we get appreciating the sight. Colour therapists would have us believe that each colour, being a specific light wavelength, has a specific energy that can affect the body’s inner vibrations in particular ways. There is certainly some evidence that colour can affect our mood. US scientist Robert Gerard conducted a study that demonstrated how the colour red might stimulate anxiety, and colour psychology is used by business to market products and attract customers. The deep purples and indigos are said to be related to the immune system, the reds our skeletal and muscular system, yellow the digestion and, green the blood and circulation. Whatever the benefits of particular colours might be, there can be no mistake that the autumn show is a great attraction (look at the numbers of visitors to arboretums and woodlands such as Westonbirt and Batsford), and autumn colour in the garden and beyond is good for the spirit.
Don’t panic! It’s the week before Christmas and the atmosphere is getting hectic. For many of us the thought that we need to find something special for that significant somebody has just hit home, but the remaining shopping days until the big weekend have really dwindled. It suddenly feels like it’s time for that last minute present buying rush.
There is some interesting research by consumer psychologists in America that has shown how last minute gift shopping often means a better gift is bought. Apparently in last minute shopping we don’t overthink, we distill our understanding to the essence of the person we are buying for and hone in on things they will really appreciate. Many retailers are innovating to get in on the act of last minute gifting, bundling up goods in prettily wrapped parcels.These days we are lucky the internet has opened up the possibility of buying last minute gifts, and making it so much easier than tramping down to the shops and negotiating the queues. Gift tokens can even be bought up until Christmas Eve and Christmas morning.
If not over-thinking the buying, and keeping to something simple, is the key to buying a gift which is just right, then last minute gifts for gardeners need to pick up on those ideas. There are lots of last minute gift suggestions by garden writers in the daily papers and gardening columns, and similar from major garden centres. But, we’d like to suggest that the most practical, gardener-focused, gift might just be one from Genus Gardenwear! We'll be working right up to Christmas Eve, and we have a great range of Genus gardening clothes and accessories that make the perfect gift for the serious gardener in your life. We even do gift vouchers. Happy Christmas!
It’s getting to look a lot like that time of year! We have been really busy here in the Genus packing shed over the last week, as the rush to get gardeners their great gifts of performance gardening clothes for Christmas got into full swing. It’s just amazing to think how much Christmas gifting has changed over the years. Something like 90% of people in Britain do some or all of their Christmas shopping on line. The average Christmas spend for a family in Britain this year is estimated at around £796 most of which is spent on gifts. As a national an incredible £16 billion of Christmas spending is expected to boost the economy. Whilst Britons spend less on toys and games, they spend more on clothing, books and sports gear.
Garden centres ring the changes, they no longer confine their Christmas sales to just Christmas trees and decorations, but, like our local Burford garden centre, hold Christmas markets and offer a full range of Christmas gifts for gardeners and their gardens, many of which you needn’t even travel to the garden centre to buy – you can do it on-line. The range of gifts for gardeners has really increased, everything from essential tools and accessories such as forks and garden trugs, through to novelty plants (e.g. a “grow your own beer plant” and “grow your own truffle tree”?) and collections of seeds, as well as items for managing the garden harvest such as herb dryers or berry pickers. Some are probably more welcome under the Christmas tree than others! The Telegraph spotted some very weird offerings including zombie gnomes intended to create a “lawn of the dead”, and battery operated heated socks (not sure how you would wash those)!
So whether an enthusiastic gardener or a gardening novice there seems to be something for everyone. We have to say though, that nothing beats our Genus gardening clothes and accessories as the perfect gift for the serious gardener in your life. Happy Christmas!