Trees as a Last-Minute Gift

Gift giving is part of many different sorts of holidays, from birthdays to special holidays, so you might run out of gift ideas. There is an ancient proverb that runs plan for tomorrow, plant a garden; plan for the future, plant a tree. Why not give someone something truly special, give the gift of a tree?

Personal Trees

An olive tree tucked into a special bonsai pot can make a delightful gift, especially if the person in question collects or creates bonsai. There is something about olive trees, their small grey leaves, and the way their trunks are naturally gnarled that makes them a natural for bonsai. If that is not your specialty, or if the recipient is not fond of these artfully shaped plants, you might try one of those perennial favourites, such as a potted dragon tree. Dragon trees grow very slowly, so a young one can be kept in an average-sized home for several years. Better yet, these sturdy trees require little attention and are usually pest free.

Steps to Giving a Personal Tree

  1. Sound out the person by discussing various plants or trees to discover their personal preference for types of plants. Would they like a Bonsai? Or a Grass Tree? Or perhaps they would rather have an agave? Be sure to discover whether the person is allergic to any specific kind of greenery. For example, some people are allergic to cedar trees, so a baby cedar would not be a good gift.
  2. Select an appropriate pot. It is a good idea to put the gift tree in a slightly larger than necessary pot to give the young tree room to grow. This will allow the new owner to learn about the tree without immediately needing to re-pot it. A neutral colour or a favourite colour is a good choice for the pot.
  3. Include care and growing instructions with the tree. If possible, give a little history about the baby tree and about the tree type. Be sure to include instructions both for growing the tree indoors as well as out.
  4. A potted plant is not usually happy about being swaddled in wrapping paper. Instead, use a large gift bag or box with a sturdy bottom and open top. Add a card, the instructions, and perhaps even a special message.
  5. Add a starter kit of any fertilizer, special soil additives, miniature garden tools or similar items that might go with the plant.

Gift an Outdoor Tree

People who are moving into a new home, or who are tree enthusiasts, might welcome a new tree for their landscape, tree lot, or orchard. But before you give your friend a living tree, discover whether they will have time to plant it right away or even whether they want another tree on their property. A tree is a living entity. It might not be like a puppy or kitten, but it is still kind to both the tree and the person to make sure that they are a good match.

Once you are sure that your friend would like a tree, look for something unusual, or a type of tree that is a favourite, but that is a different colour or slightly unusual. However, it is a good plan to check with your local conservation department to make sure that the tree in question is not one that will cause environmental problems. After all, a gift of a tree should bring joy – not problems. Using due diligence and research before giving is always an excellent plan.

Commemorative Trees

A tree can be a living monument, or it can simply be part of making the world a better place for everyone. There are a wide variety of programs that plant trees and welcome donations. Some will even add a little marker, while others will create a card or small plaque that the recipient can hang in a room or an office. The important thing to remember here is to make sure that the organization that is planting the tree is legitimate. Again, checking in with your local conservation or naturalist department is a good way to discover organizations that are planting trees, and that will welcome a donation in your friend’s name to plant one or more trees. This kind of gift tree can be an excellent selection for a nature lover who does not have a place to keep a potted plant or lawn or field area in which to plant a tree.

A Tree is a Gift to the World

A properly placed tree is a gift not only to the gift receiver but also to the world. Trees can give fruit, they convert carbon dioxide into sugars that they use as energy and give off oxygen. In addition, trees help slow erosion, bring up minerals from the deep earth, and generally benefit the world around them. Whether your gift will be planted in someone’s backyard or in a forest reserve, an outdoor tree is a gift to the world, helping make it a better place.

Where to Get Your Trees

When purchasing trees as a gift, always buy from a licensed, accredited nursery, such as Designer Trees. While it might seem economical to give something dug up out of your backyard, a professional will help you select the right kind of tree for its planned location and will be able to give appropriate instructions for how to plant and care for it.


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