It's always nice to show your affection for someone you love with a thoughtful gift and card. But what you give may be harmful from an environmental standpoint. For example, many people give floral bouquets as gifts on holidays like Mother's Day. As beautiful as they look, bouquets have an ugly side because the flower industry has a surprisingly large carbon footprint. This is because cut flowers require tons of water to grow, are often grown and flown in from other countries, and are frequently treated with toxic chemicals that are harmful to the planet. This year, forget the bouquet and celebrate Mother's Day in a green way with these sustainable gift ideas!
Spring and summer bulbs
Not all flowers are created equal. Instead of a floral bouquet, consider giving MOM flowers she can plant and grow herself! Spring and summer bulbs are a great gift if your Mom is an avid gardener. They're so much better than a bouquet because they'll last longer and will beautify your Mom's garden – potentially for years to come if they are perennials. For an even more sustainable gift, look for pollinator bulbs which support the local bee population in Mom's area. Species like tulips, crocus and alliums are all pollinators.
Another great alternative to giving Mom cut flowers this year is to give her a flowering tree or shrub. A tree is a great sustainable gift because trees sequester carbon. Planting more trees can help fight climate change – and you'll earn bonus sustainability points if the tree is a pollinator! Great options include plum trees, cherry trees, redbud trees and sumac. Visit your local garden centre or nursery to find one Mom will love.
Recycled and ethically-sourced jewelry
If your Mom is a fashion maven, jewelry is a great gift. There are amazing Canadian brands and artisans that make jewelry from recycled and ethically-sourced materials. Check out recycled jewelry on Etsy and explore collections from Canadian brands like Fair Jewelry, Foe and Dear, and CHAYLE Jewelry.
Reusable coffee or tea tumbler
If your Mom is a coffee or tea fan who buys her hot drink of choice to-go, a reusable tumbler is a great sustainable gift option she can get a lot of use out of. Encourage her to bring it with her to a café and ask the barista to fill it up. This gift will help your Mom reduce waste as traditional disposable paper and styrofoam coffee cups are wasteful, difficult to recycle and have a harmful impact on the environment. Etsy has some amazing reusable tumbler options – many of which are customizable.
Mother's Day e-card
If you don't have the budget for a gift, you can always show your Mom that you care with a card! Before you buy or make a paper card, consider going paperless by sending a free e-card instead. Paper is sourced from trees and we need all the trees we can spare these days to fight climate change. Going paperless whenever possible is a good idea as the paper industry has a very large carbon footprint. Learn about paper's 5-stage life cycle to understand why.
We hope these sustainable Mother's Day gift ideas help you show your Mom that you care – without having a negative impact on the planet.