Dreaming of a Green Christmas with Natural + Recycled Gift Wrap Ideas

s, weedwhacker,

The holiday season doesn?t have to be pocketbook-draining or a time to create a mountain of waste! This guide is full of natural and recycled gift wrap ideas that will give you a green Christmas for your holiday gifts. They are festive, creative, and perfectly suited to a no-waste holiday. 

Gifted tri-green colored candle with evergreen decor and twine wrapped around Are you dreaming of a green Christmas? One that celebrates plants and all the beauty of nature with a whole lot less waste? Now that?s my kind of holiday celebration!

I?ve been crafting up all sorts of holiday goodies like bath bombs, soaps, tub teas, and so much more. I spend so much time making sure that they?re not filled with artificial fragrances and colors, and use only plant-based natural scents. Then, I?ll adorn them with dried herbs and flower petals, and when it comes time to wrap them up, what?s a girl to do?

Head out to the garden, of course!

Natural and Recycled Gift Wrap Ideas

There are so many different ways you can wrap gifts that are not only eco-friendly, but they are truly beautiful, too! Here are some of my favourite ways to give your gifts that final touch.

gift with twine and herb wrapping

Natural Jute Twine

No matter the season, my go-to ribbon is jute twine. While it?s essential in the garden for tying up unruly vines or , it also works perfectly to tie gift tags on jars and boxes for gift giving. I love the texture and rustic feel that jute adds to any gift.

Herbal Bath Salts in Weck Jar with Jute Twine and Label

Garden Clippings

A sprig of evergreen or a branch of berries looks prettier than any pre-made bow I?ve ever seen. Get some pruners or sharp scissors, head out to the garden, and clip something green to tuck into the twine.

If you are not sure which plants to reach for, I?ve put together an entire post that lists the and which ones to avoid. The last thing you want to do is snip a few sprigs to decorate your gifts with only to have them smelling like cat urine the next day (I?m looking at you, boxwood).

This winter forest soap recipe is scented with essential oils from forest trees making it both fresh and woodsy. Quite refreshing for your morning shower!

From the Recycling Bin

You probably already have a stash of cellophane wrap, gift bags, ribbons, and boxes that you can use for wrapping.

They may not look brand-new, but I?m sure that?s the last thing on the mind of your giftee?they are getting a thoughtful gift from you after all! I know I would greatly appreciate both the gift and the green gesture.

Evergreen Clipping Paper Gift Tag with Twine

Recycled Gift Tags & Labels

If you?re reusing gift bags and boxes, you?ll also need to add a new gift tag. A clever way to make them is to use a tag punch to create gift tags from some of the cards you?ve received.

Birthday cards, Christmas, or whatever have you, a will quickly make three to four .

Tag punched gift tags from old Christmas cards

Stamped Gift Tags

A set of letter stamps and some plain gift tags can be a pretty way to give instructions on how to use your gift. I did that for this . I love the rustic look of these letters!

Homemade gift tags with letter stamps

Printable Gift Tags

Grab some recycle paper and put it into your printer and make your own gift tags using pretty printable tags. I chose to hand-letter the gift names on these, but you could easily choose a fun font and print them instead.

Printable gift tags on candles and bath salts

Printable Labels

Homemade gifts don?t come with instructions, and some of the things you make might look so good, but they can also be a bit confusing as to what they are. The handmade soap could look so pleasing that your friend thinks it?s fudge. It?s happened to me! Now I always add a label to let my pals know what they are getting (and save them from eating bath products).

round labels come in 2? and 2.5? diameter to fit the top of a regular mouth and wide-mouth canning jar, respectively. Print them on full sheet label paper and use a 2? or 2.5? craft punch to cut out perfect circles. for how to print and cut out labels.

homemade gift labels on candle and bath salts Mason Jars

Who doesn?t love a gift in a beautiful glass jar? Mason jars are incredibly useful and versatile. I actually collect Mason jars! So every time I get a gift in a jar it?s like getting two gifts in one.

Need some gifts you can make in bulk? Jars are your friend! I made 30 of these teeny-tiny in miniature Kilner jars for an event. The wooden spoon was the perfect added touch too.

herb finishing salt in a Kilner jar with gift tag and greenery

Fabric and Textiles

Consider wrapping your gift in textiles that become part of the gift. You could wrap home-baked goodies in a , use a knit washcloth to wrap , or make a for a plant.

green felt cover for a cactus plant wrapped with twine

Join the Botanical Beauty Holiday Gifts Workshop

Ok, so now you have a TON of natural and recycled gift wrap ideas, and you need something to go inside, amiright?

Why not join me to make holiday gifts this year? Head over to the where we?re crafting botanical bath salts, tub teas, lotion bars, and bath bombs.

See you there!

More Holiday Gift Ideas to Try:

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If your feet are dry and rough, or just in need of a little pick-me-up, this peppermint foot scrub is just what you need. This simple DIY scrub takes just minutes to put together but will provide you with hours of relief.

Peppermint sugar scrub in a jar with spoon

What do achy, dry, rough feet need? A little pampering straight from the garden! That?s right, even your feet benefit from a little garden therapy.

This peppermint foot scrub is made specifically for feet. Exfoliating sugar and dried herbs will scrub away rough skin, the coconut oil will soften cracks, and soothing peppermint essential oil has a cooling effect. Update: follow this foot scrub with an ! 

The Benefits of Foot Scrubs

Sugar scrubs are all the rage. You will find endless recipes for them just by scrolling pages of social media. What?s the appeal, you ask? Let me tell you!

Simple to Make

First, diy foot scrubs are simple to make. Not only does it typically take just minutes to put together, but you can usually find all of the ingredients around the house. This makes sugar scrubs a fabulous way to get started if you want to learn how to make your own all-natural skincare products.

You can see all of the products I use in the. Before you ask, no, I don?t sell any of them. I make them for myself, friends, and family, and post the recipes for everyone else! 

Customized Skin-Healing Ingredients

Second, you can be very creative with ingredients. Generally, you start with sugar and oil as the base. Then, the fun really begins. Sure, you can leave the sugar and oil as is and have a nice scrub, but why not dress it up a bit?

Here are just a few things that this particular sugar scrub has in it:

  • Scent ? in this particular recipe, I use peppermint essential oil and a peppermint tea bag.
  • Medicinal properties ? peppermint does more Tents than just add a nice scent, however. It also provides a tingling, cooling relief that feet absolutely love.
  • Skin healing ? one of the major benefits of using coconut oil is that it naturally contains anti-fungal properties. This makes it especially excellent for use on hardworking feet.

homemade sugar scrub in a jar

Makes Your Skin Feel Great

Third, they make your skin feel fantastic! I won?t go too far into the adjectives here because I can?t do justice to the smooth, soft, baby skin that you have hidden just beneath that outer layer. Just try it and you will see.

Great Gift Idea

With all those benefits wrapped into one package, why not double or even triple the recipe below and share it with a few friends? This is a DIY gift that absolutely everyone will love.

I like to package this in , and for a little extra touch, I will add a and even a sometimes.

If you are looking for other gift wrapping ideas, take a look at this post about .

How to Make Peppermint Foot Scrub

Alright, let?s talk about how you actually make this peppermint foot scrub.

Remember, this recipe is perfect for feet. You can certainly use it all over your body, and I have, but I love this for cooling and soothing feet.

The secret is in the peppermint essential oil. It has a stimulating and cooling effect on the skin that can really perk up tired feet. If you are prone to foot or leg cramps, a massage with this oil will feel terrific, particularly when followed with this .

Ingredients Needed:

The following recipe makes 400g  of sugar scrub.

  • (this is optional, but I recommend it as a natural way to get a pretty mint color)

Make it!

Layout your ingredients. Note: set the coconut oil out in a warm place so that it softens but does not completely melt. Look for the consistency of softened butter for baking. It is very difficult to work with coconut oil straight out of the jar as it does not mix well.

ingredients for peppermint coconut sugar scrub

In a bowl, mix together the sugar and the coconut oil.

mixing the ingredients of a peppermint sugar scrub

Empty the contents of the teabag into a small bowl. Sprinkle the herbs into the sugar scrub. You can choose as much or as little as you would like to add, keeping in mind that adding more herbs can make the scrub more abrasive.

adding dried herbs to scrub recipe

To give a minty green color to the scrub, add in some spirulina powder as a natural colorant. You can play with how much you?d like to add. I kept mine on the lighter side because I prefer a softer green.

spirulina powder being added to peppermint sugar scrub to give it a green color

Add 10 drops of peppermint essential oil. That may not seem like very much, but I promise you, a little goes a long way. This is particularly true of peppermint oil!

Adding mint essential oil to sugar scrub mix

Stir the ingredients together and scoop into a lidded jar.

stirring mint coconut sugar scrub

Give it!

To give this as a present, simply package the scrub in a jar with a , then use a liquid chalk pen to write the label. Wrap jute twine around the top of the jar, just under the lid and tie in a bow.

How to Store Peppermint Sugar Scrub

This scrub will need to be used within 3 months. It will be okay on a bathroom counter for a few days, but anything you keep longer will need to be stored in a refrigerator to extend shelf life.

mint scrub label on a jar - a gift of peppermint sugar scrub

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peppermint foot scrub

DIY Peppermint Sugar Scrub

Give sore, tired feed the ultimate pampering with this DIY peppermint foot scrub. Coconut oil will soothe and heal skin while sugar gently exfoliates and peppermint provides cooling relief.

Supplies

  • 250 grams
  • 125 grams softened
  • 1
  • 10 drops
  •   optional, for color

Instructions

  • In a bowl, mix together the sugar and the softened coconut oil.
  • Add the contents of the peppermint tea bag.
  • Sprinkle in some spirulina powder as a natural colorant.
  • Add 10 drops of peppermint essential oil.
  • Stir together and add to a lidded jar.

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Orchids are one of the daintiest flowers you can grow in your home. From supermarket flowers to exotic varieties, there is an orchid for every level of gardener out there. Whether you?re looking to care for the new orchid you received or you?re a seasoned grower who is looking to multiply with propagation, this guide covers everything you need to help you manage orchid care at home.

If you?ve ever owned an orchid or wanted to, you?ve probably been told these plants are notoriously tricky. Yes, they do require some special care and are truthfully a little bit higher maintenance than other plants, but you will be well-rewarded for your efforts.

Several varieties of orchids, including the popular Phalaenopsis variety, are readily available from nurseries, growers, and home improvement stores where they are sold in their flowering state.

Although the blooms may last for weeks or even months, getting the plant to create new flowers is sometimes a tricky endeavor. For some, they are left with nothing but leaves for months on end! But with the right type of care, lighting, and temperature controls, a healthy orchid will reproduce flowers several times a year.

Orchids in a metal container

Lighting Conditions for Orchids

First things first, pick the perfect spot for your orchid to thrive! How much and what type of light the orchid plant receives is the most important aspect of their care.

Very few plants will produce new flowers if kept under insufficient lighting conditions. A healthy flowering orchid in its natural environment receives filtered light for several hours during the day. Protected by other overhead plants, the plants receive bits of sun and bright light that peek through the rainforest throughout the day.

Orchid plant in a ceramic container indoor

Indoors, an orchid plant bred from a nursery will thrive under very bright light. However, protect the plant from direct sun that might burn the leaves or flowers. Orchids should receive at least 3 ? 4 hours of clear light each day.

Fluorescent lighting may be beneficial to flower production but usually is not sufficient enough as the only lighting source. When it comes down to it, you want your orchid to flower more than once, pay attention to how much and what kind of light it is receiving.

Row of orchids blooming

The Best Temperature Conditions for Growing Orchids

Not all orchid varieties prefer the same temperature conditions, but the common types that are sold commercially will do well in normal indoor environments. To flower, orchids generally prefer a daytime temperature between 70 -75 degrees and a nighttime temperature of around 60 ? 65 degrees.

Plants enjoy being placed near a shower or bathtub where they experience steamy conditions. Good air circulation is paramount to orchid health, and they will thrive if placed near a protected window with warm but not hot ventilation.

Keep a close eye though, if the temperature is too cool, flower production may be stalled. If you?re looking for a sure-fire way to maintain humidity for your orchid, .

Orchid by a glass fogged window indoors

Watering Orchids

To water or not to water, that is the question! During the cooler months of the year, most indoor varieties of orchids only require watering once a week. To water, place plants in a sink or tub and give them a good soaking and plenty of time to drain. Underwatering rather than overwatering is a better practice as the roots need a chance to air and will rot with too much water.

During the warmer months, water the plants twice a week and mist with a sprayer during particularly hot days. Fertilizing an orchid plant on a regular basis will help generate flowers. Fertilize plants a minimum of every 3 weeks and preferably every week to boost flower production. Choose a fertilizer specifically manufactured for orchids.

yellow bloomed orchid indoors in front of a piece of art

Replanting Orchids

Most orchids prefer being slightly crowded, otherwise, the roots may be susceptible to excessive moisture and rotting. Nurseries carry a variety of orchid potting mixture, many of which have a high bark content that allows the roots to receive air.

The main objective when repotting an orchid plant is to allow for good drainage and air circulation. Repot an orchid or give it some fresh potting mix every two years.

Finding the right environment to allow an orchid to produce new flowers requires a few simple steps. If the light, temperature, and moisture conditions are suitable, a healthy orchid will continue to produce stunning floral displays for many years.

Closeup of an orchid bloom with yellow and pink

California?s Orchid Centre

In 2017, I had the pleasure of visiting location in Salinas, California. Oh my goodness, was it ever impressive! They were in the midst of preparing their California spring trials and they were growing orchids left and right.

From small cuttings to fully blooming giants, being in a warehouse full of propagating plants is really a dream come true. I barely have enough room on my windowsills to propagate!

Orchids being propagated at the factory

Orchids being so finicky, most people don?t think to propagate them. However, they are so lovely it is worth the patience and effort. I got some great tips from the team at Floricultura during my visit, and I would love to share some of them with you.

Orchid Propagation Tips

There are a few ways you can propagate an orchid at home. I?m going to cover 3 different methods: division, stem cuttings, and offshoots. Different methods will work for different types of orchids, so be sure to fully inspect your orchid beforehand to determine which method may be best.

baby orchids growing in black cups

Stem Cuttings

This is my preferred method and probably the simplest method for propagating orchids. First, identify which stem to cut. It should be thick, healthy, at least 10 inches high, and have a good aerial root system attached. Cut the stem near the orchids base and just above a node, or leaf joint. This will allow a new orchid to continue to grow from the trimmed stem.

Next, cut your stem into smaller pieces that contain at least 2 nodes each. I then like to cover the ends with an anti-fungal such as cinnamon or charcoal.

Place the stems horizontally in a tray of damp sphagnum moss. Keep the tray in a clear plastic bag to help contain moisture in and then place in bright (but not direct) sunlight. Remember to support humidity at all times! After a few months, you should see some new leaves and roots beginning to form.

Division

How to propagate orchids

You will want to use this method once the plant has fully matured and finished flowering. This method is best if an orchid has outgrown its pot and is a few years old. There are a couple different approaches to dividing orchids, using either active or dormant pseudobulbs.

Active pseudobulbs will have leaves and stems and can be divided as long as they have enough roots to sustain their growth. Carefully cut and separate between rhizomes and then replant separately.

Dormant pseudobulbs will have no leaves or stems and will sit ?sleeping? in the pot. They can be carefully divided and planted on their own. Eventually, they should start growing and produce a brand new orchid.

OffShoots

Propagating orchids

This is the easiest way to propagate orchids if you?re lucky enough to have them. These little offshoots are often referred to as a keiki, meaning baby in Hawaiian. They are small plants that will form at the base of the orchid or off of a stem. Only cut keikis once the parent plant has finished flowering.

Water the parent plant before you begin cutting. Then, cut the offshoots beneath the stem and roots of the plant once they have reached a decent size (at least 3 leaves) and have 1 inch roots.

Plant it in sphagnum moss with the roots near the surface. Keep your keiki moist at all times and avoid putting in direct sunlight until established.

If you have a healthy, happy orchid, then you should be able to create more orchids using one of these methods. Or, if you?re happy continuing to baby your one, don?t mess with what is already working!

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