One of the silver linings to spending more time at home is an increase in time spent taking care of our plants. In fact, gardening indoors and out is a hobby now more popular then ever.
If you’re searching for that perfect gift this holiday season or you just want to brighten someone’s day with the gift that keeps on growing, you might just dig one of @TXPlantguy’s favorite options.
For the gardener that loves blooms:
This iconic holiday plant is known for its showy red bracts which change color just in time for the holidays. Contrary to popular belief, it is not very toxic at all (when ingested) although those with a latex allergy should avoid the milky sap inside its stems .
Available as stand-alone bulbs or in holiday decorated pots these easy to grow super showy flowers bloom throughout the holiday season, available in several shapes, sizes and colors but most notably reds and whites.
These South American succulents are great plants that keep on giving and has been passed down in many households for their propensity to boom during the holidays. They are again gaining popularity, especially in their red and white blooming forms.
Another easy to grow holiday plant that is gaining popularity are the red Kalanchoe with long-lasting blooms that persist through the holiday season. Of the plants on this list they might just be the easiest to care for. So, if you’re shopping for a loved one (or yourself) and that person has had trouble keeping plants growing in the past, this one is a sure bet!
Phalaenopsis orchids can be found in almost every local garden center and most grocery and box stores. If you are looking for a gift in a pinch for your favorite plant lover, these offer a major upside for last minute shoppers! As showy and stately as any holiday houseplant, their large striking blooms with last for months. For holiday flare look for white and dark red versions.
A well-known ornamental plant for commercial properties, colorful bromeliads are also a trendy holiday houseplant. Perfect for the bustling holiday home with out much sunlight, the red versions of this plant can add a pop off color with minimal care.
Variegated gray and green leaves give a holiday feel without much fuss. These plants do great with little care in rooms with bright but indirect light. Although they come in many colors, red and white blooming cyclamen are beautiful holiday house plants that can also be added to outdoor pots, blooming throughout the colder Texas winters.
- Bonus: A lump of Coal?!
A perfect gift or stocking stuffer for the naughty gardener on your list or at least the one who has a great sense of humor. Horticultural charcoal is more than a gag gift however, when added to the bottom of indoor planters it can help balance soil pH, buffer water absorption, and is believed to promote beneficial soil bacteria and fungi.
Food For the Soul: Holiday Herbs
Herbs make a great gift during the holiday season! Not only do small herb plants tend to be more cost effective than those plastic clam shells sold in stores, but during the holidays they come in handy providing tasty and showy ingredients to dishes and cocktails! They can also be paired with a cute pot or container that dresses up the gift without the need for gift wrap!
Available as topiaried Christmas trees or in their more traditional shrub form this evergreen herbs provide the look (and smell) of the holidays when added to your favorite poultry dishes or as a garnish for cocktails. After the season this living Christmas tree can be planted outside in full sun where it is one of the easiest Mediterranean herbs to care for.
Another herbal living Christmas tree are the hybrid French lavenders which provide an illusion of snow dusted contrast with their grey green leaves. A favorite of potpourris and sachets, its sweet floral smelling leaves and flowers are also edible, often paired with chicken or fish, or accompanied with citrus or cranberries in a holiday cocktail. Its scent also has a calming effect, which we could all use after a year like 2020!
Most notably combined with holiday turkeys, this semi evergreen herbal shrub is very versatile, also added to holiday stuffing, roasts and soups. For tastes and smells that warm the winter palate, try burning the edges and garnishing your favorite bourbon drink.
Another herb that pairs well with holiday recipes is thyme. This easy to grow Mediterranean herb is also available in variegated form whose leaves look and taste lemony. Try either to flavor and garnish warm dips and soups or tossed into your favorite spritzer or class of champagne accompanied with cranberries for added holiday flair.
This herbal groundcover is easy to grow in spots with little sunlight and handles cooler temperature quite well in addition to adding a cool mint flavor to holiday desserts. Spearmint and peppermint are also at home garnishing a number of holiday mocktails or cocktail along with the holiday candy of the same name.