Gifts For Gardeners And Green Living

Air Date:
Heard On The Larry Meiller Show
Getting DIY ideas from Pinterest is one way to get creative with gardeing gifts. jessica wilson (CC-BY-NC-ND-2.0)

Who’s on your holiday gift list? If you have gardeners or people interested in sustainable living to buy for, tune in for great ideas for all budgets.

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  • Need A Environmentally Friendly Holiday Gift? See Quick, Simple Gifts For 'Green' Living Enthusiasts

    The words “quick” and “easy” could make anyone’s ears perk up and so to make holiday shopping a little less stressful, two sisters have a few ideas for those looking for homemade gifts this year.

    While Santa has a list of who is naughty and nice, sisters Astrid and Sonya Newenhouse have their own list — and this includes only nice things. Astrid is is a senior scientist in the Environmental Resources Center and the department of Biological Systems Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison while Sonya is the president of NewenHouse LLC. They have a few suggestions not only for folks interested in sustainable living, but for anyone who wants the touch of a personalized gift.

    Cowboy Cookies In A Jar

    Ingredients include oats, flour, pecans, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, chocolate chips and cinnamon, according to a Taste of Home recipe. Going layer by layer, add each ingredient on top of the other in a mason jar so the ingredients are visible.

    “Picture dry ingredients in a mason jar and all you have to do then is add butter — organic butter of course — an egg and vanilla,” Sonya said.

    She also recommends adding nice fabric to where the lid sits along with the recipe tied around the top.

    “If you have kids at home and you’d like them to make a present for neighbors or family members, it’s a really easy activity,” Sonya said.

    Fingerless Mittens

    Another gift option is to take those homemade knitted socks you have at home and make them into fingerless mittens.

    “Where the hole was in the thumb, I just left that hole that had busted out and I did a blanket stitch with yarn around that hole and then I cut off the toe part and I made a fingerless mitt,” Sonya said.

    The whole process takes about twenty minutes and it’s also a way to recycle!

    Maple Syrup Kit

    To get started in the tapping of maple trees, Astrid said it’s both quick and easy — especially in Wisconsin, there are trees all over the state to start making your own maple syrup!

    The equipment you’ll need is a maple tap, which costs about $6.50, a 7/16 inch drill bit, a little piece of tubing, and an ice cream pale.

    “You could make a kit for someone so that they could tap a maple tree or two in their yard next March,” Astrid said.

    For those who feel daunted by the thought of boiling the sap down to syrup, Astrid said you can drink the sap on its own or add it to smoothies.

    “The whole process was so fun. And we just got in tune with our trees and with the climate,” Astrid said.

    The rest of their homemade gifts can be found here along with many other gardening and sustainable living gifts.

Episode Credits

  • Larry Meiller Host
  • Cheyenne Lentz Producer
  • Astrid Newenhouse Guest
  • Sonya Newenhouse Guest

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