4 Creative 'Outdoorsy' Green Gift Ideas4 Creative 'Outdoorsy' Green Gift Ideas

There are a hundred great gift ideas involving recycled household items. There are also a number of excellent green products that reduce eco-footprint and make wonderful gifts. Combine the two and what do you get? Eco-friendly gifts directly from home. Here are four outdoor gift ideas that are both green and cost-effective.

Bird Feeder

Building a bird feeder is not an innovative idea. They make great gifts as they are relatively low maintenance, supply food to neighbourhood birds and provide enjoyable interaction with nature. How green is that?
What if you could make it greener? Grab some string and a plastic jug, cut a hole in the jug and hang it up with birdseed. Or, use a 2L bottle, a wooden spoon, a plant hanging screw and some string. Cut a circle on one side of the bottle and an asterisk on the opposite side. To cut an asterisk, make a dot with a marker on the bottle. Cut a vertical line through the dot. Then cut on a 45 degree angle through the dot. Repeat the angled cut on the other side of the vertical line. Insert the spoon through the hole and the asterisk so the handle sticks out the circle as a perch. Spruce it up with papier-mâché or pinecones.

Decorative Watering Bulbs

Do you know anyone who has roses and is really finicky about water-spotted petals? Make them a decorative water bulb that seeps water into the soil. Poke a screw driver into the cap of any pop bottle to create a hole, fill up the container with water and glue a sponge to the inside of the bottle cap. Decorate it however you like and plant it cap down next to the roses in the garden.

Watering Can

If you are looking for a more hands-on gift, make your friend a watering can out of an old laundry detergent bottle. Attach an old shower head (if you are really ambitious) or simply poke small holes into the lid of the bottle. Decorate the can and wrap it in a re-usable shopping bag.

Seed Starter Kits

Seed trays can be expensive and they tend to pile up in the garage. Cardboard egg cartons are a green alternative. Fill each pod with soil and plant your seeds. Once they begin to sprout, cut the carton into individual pods and move them to your garden, carton and all. Make sure the cartons are buried.

For an early start, line a shoe box with tin foil so that it extends over the side of the box, poke holes in the bottom, and fill it halfway with soil. Put seeds in the soil a couple of weeks before moving them outside. The tinfoil will help keep the soil warm and reflect light onto the growing plants. When the planting season arrives, transplant into the garden, recycling the tinfoil and shoe box.

This is a sampling of the creative ways household items can be reused as eco-friendly gifts. This approach maximizes the appeal of going green, because it addresses one of the primary ways people are held back from this endeavour: cost. Recycle stuff around the house, save money, and give a green gift.
by Ivy Newport
References and Bibliography
Ivy Newport is the president and product strategist at Every Little Bit, an online retail store featuring eco-friendly products for your every day needs. You are welcome to use this article provided you include a link to Every Little Bit to credit authorship.
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