Snake plants are perfect gifts for the first-time plant parent. | Credit: gettyimages.com

Gift-giving season is here and so is the opportunity to celebrate your indoor plant lover with something thoughtful.

While not as exciting on the surface, useful plant care gifts will light up your plant lovers’ heart. Consider coupling a few of these practical items that will show the recipient that you also care about the health of their beloved plant collection. Additionally, it shows the recipient that you value the time and effort they spend on caring for them. Let them know that they and their passions are seen and appreciated.

A good pair of thin blade pruning shears makes a great gift for the plant-lover in your life. | gettyimages.com

A pair of thin-bladed shears are useful for pruning most indoor plants. Their thin, delicate leaves and stems require a sharp cut when trimming to avoid damage to the plant which could leave it susceptible to disease. Couple a new pair of shears with high quality organic indoor plant fertilizer and soil. When spring comes and their plants move out of their winter dormancy phase, they’ll be ready to repot their plants to encourage new growth.

Hand-held misters can be stylish, but studies show that even habitual misting does not make a real impact on the long-term health of the plant. Most of the water sprayed from a mister evaporates from the leaves long before the plant can process it. What misting does is provide an opportunity to engage in the overall care of the plants which is a boost for the mental health of the plant parent. So if your goal with this gift is more for the plant parent than the plant, be sure to mention that the thought behind this gift is so that they can spend more time observing and caring for their plants.

Any basic warm-mist humidifier can be a game changer for house plants especially during the winter months when the heat is turned on and the air becomes dry. Use humidifiers only for those plants that would benefit from it. Snake plants, cacti and succulents do not need the additional humidity. If their plants are spread out, be sure they know to move them to one area to get the most benefit from the humidifier.

Give the gift of plant experiences
By far the best gifts are experiential gifts. Roadside Blooms and other plant shops around town host workshops which are fun, hands-on and educational. Be sure to get more than one ticket or gift card for two tickets so that if you can’t go with them they can bring someone to experience the class with them. Roadside Blooms, for example, offers a four-month in-person plant class called Plantmate, where each month reveals a new surprise plant. Participants learn about the natural history of the plant, how to pot it, care for it, and propagate it. The best part is making other plant-minded friends.

Kids love giving handmade ‘coupons’ for things like “family outing of your choice,” “day off from chores,” “one-hour uninterrupted nap” (my personal favorite), etc. Why not give the most precious thing that we have, time? Give a coupon for a day of help repotting in the spring, weekly plant care help for one month, or a day hitting up their favorite local plant shops.

And then there are great plants
If you want to gift a plant, consider the recipient’s plant experience.

If they are newbies, go with something easy such as a snake plant, zz-plant or pothos. With minimal care they will begin to build their confidence and be ready for the next challenge.
If they have a solid plant collection, try to find out what plants are on their wish list or ask your favorite plant shop which plants are most unique.

If you have the time and plants, propagate one of your beloved plants and gift it with a little note on why it’s beloved, where it came from, and how to care for it. The thought behind that will go a long way.

Toni Reale is the owner of Roadside Blooms, a unique flower and plant shop in Park Circle in North Charleston. It specializes in weddings, events and everyday deliveries using nearly 100% American- and locally grown blooms. Online at roadsideblooms.com.

4610 Spruill Ave., Suite 102, North Charleston.


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