Christmas 2007 Plants and Botany Related Gift Ideas

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Do you want something a little leafy for your sweetie when it snows? Botanists and gardeners can 'pine' for their passions during the winter, but a little creative thinking can procure a stocking full of green gifts for Christmas.

A good stocking stuffer for the green thumb on your list would be a variety of seed packets: flowers, herbs, tomatoes, or vegetables are all sure to delight. If you include a seed starter tray, which can be found at greenhouses or the seasonal department of hardware stores, they can start their seeds early in the spring so that their garden has an advantage come planting season. If you're feeling ambitious, a heat mat to keep tender seedlings' roots warm can be purchased for around $25.

A flower press can help stuff that stocking, and the green-thumbed recipient will have their own pressed flowers to craft with. If they are less than crafty, craft fairs and stationary shops may sell the finished product, such as pressed flower stationary or cards, candles, jewellery, soaps, and magnets. If your gardener desires more practical gifts, gardening gloves, tools such as trowels, and birdfeeders might be more to their liking. All can be found in the seasonal departments of hardware stores or local greenhouses.

Does your botanist have an indoor garden perched on window ledges and hanging in pots from the ceiling? Lee Valley Tools carries beautiful hand-blown glass watering bulbs for $9.50. Watering bulbs can be poked into a potted plant's soil, and will slowly drain so that the plant is kept moist for up to seven days. Do they like to force exotic plants? A new wardian case (also known as a terrarium) is an elegant and practical addition to any home, and can support all sorts of delicate flora. Lee Valley carries a selection, starting from $39.

Local greenhouses will stock a variety of exotic plants, from orchids and Venus Fly Traps to air plants and bonsai trees that would - if carefully wrapped - make for a great surprise beneath the Christmas tree. So would Brian Capon's 'Botany for Gardeners', a best-selling illustrated guide that introduces the science behind the plants and flowers that your botanist or gardener cherishes.

And if you're looking for a greener Christmas all around, rescue a half-acre of rainforest from the loggers' saws by donating to the World Land Trust. 25, or approximately $50, can preserve a half-acre of delicate rainforest for posterity. Anyone who recognizes the importance of plants would be delighted by such an unusual - and philanthropic - gift.

Some helpful links:

Lee Valley Tools:
Capon's 'Botany for Gardeners':
Flower Press Supply:
The World Land Trust:

More about this author: Eva Pronovost

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