All mums deserve pampering, and Mother's Day is the official day when that special treatment is obligatory.
The usual standbys of a garden voucher, pot plant, hand tools, fancy garden gloves and hand cream are all welcome but here are a few ideas out of the box - a range of experiences, stylish interior pieces for the home and garden.
Take note: several of these ideas may require a little sibling co-operation to make them happen without blowing your budget.
Send your mum to school
Luckily, these are the kind of classes your mother will love. A number of gardening workshops are held throughout the year. Here are a couple of stand-outs in time for Mother's Day:
• Take your mum on a weekend away to Kapiti Coast for a Heritage Rose workshop at Trinity Farm. Learn about the characteristics of different rose families, rose care, how to take cuttings, products to make with roses and more.
Heritage Rose workshop with Karen Piercy. Trinity Farm, Otaki, May 23.
• Is your mum into food gardening? Give her a one-day Tree Crops workshop at Auckland Permaculture Workshop. Includes a site visit and practical activities. Topics cover tree crop design, orchard design, propagation and grafting, plant health, pruning, herb lay and beneficial insects. Tree Crops workshop, May 16. apw.org.nz
Bring the outdoors inside
Head to North Shore's
for a fossick. This secondhand shop stocks furniture, books, china and mid-century collectibles. Check out its clever ways to use assorted vintage vessels to pot plants for a quirky gift.
The humble indoor pot plant is given a seriously stylish makeover at fashion store Superette and at website collected.co.nz
• The Cube Planter by Boskke puts the "organic process of growth on display, rather than hiding it away". The clear body of the Cube is also a water reservoir. superette.co.nz
• "Leden" Golden Concrete Pots are adorned with gold and each one is lovingly made by hand (yet still affordable); Pentagon Wall Planter in peach - "This fab new take on indoor planting is modern and contemporary, sleek and stylish. Uber-cool". These small pots would be best planted for low maintenance with a succulent, small orchid or air plant. collected.co.nz
• Bioattic Terrariums are beautiful miniature landscapes, a slice of nature housed in glass - and yes, the plants are real.
These beautiful pieces recall yesteryear in a modern way and will bring nature into the home, or a little zen tranquillity to mum's workplace. bioattic.co.nz
• Bioattic also stocks Petalhead Botanic Skincare, an all natural range made in Auckland. Its products use pure flower and plant essences. Petalhead.co.nz
Take it outside
Tools with a difference
• Fast becoming my go-to gardening tool is the Heavy Duty Hori Hori. This Japanese tool is a perfect shape for transplanting, weeding and cultivating. It has a serrated edge and cuts through roots, and has depth measurements down the side for bulb planting. If your mum had only one tool, this should be it.
• For wooden-handled tools with vintage style, and other quality garden gift ideas and botanical cards. fatherrabbit.com
All lit up
As the daylight hours drop, dark entranceways could do with extra illumination. Light up the steps at the front of the house, or shine a single spot up a tree for a welcome home feel for your mum.
• Well-priced low-voltage landscape lighting can be found at Lighting Plus. No electrician needed, just run a lead under the house and connect to a transformer (which should be kept out of the weather).
On the bucket list of inspiring destinations
A lucky friend recently visited the beautiful
garden in Sussex in England, inspiring me to check out its website. This was the family home of great gardener and gardening writer Christopher Lloyd. Their workshops had me dreaming.
If your mum is a serious gardener, and is planning a UK trip soon, book her in for a Great Dixter workshop or send her a Study Day gift voucher, which can be used at any time.
If that's a little unrealistic, get her one of Christopher Lloyd's books.