How many friends and relatives do you have to buy a present for every Christmas and you struggle to find something they would like. There is nothing they really need and it seems so silly buying them some gadget that they will probably never use. As an alternative you could make them feel really good with charity gift aid.
There are lots of charities to choose from for gardeners such as www.gardenorganic.org.uk which conserves rare vegetable seeds. You can adopt a rare vegetable for £15 to £20. There are some amazing varieties with names like: King of the Ridge Cucumber, Ragged Jack Kale, Lazy Housewife Bean, and My Girl Tomato. You will even get a gift pack with a card and a few of the seeds sent to your friend.
For £25 you can adopt a seed of an endangered plant
or for £1000 you can save a whole plant species with the Kew Gardens ‘Adopt a Seed’ campaign in association with the Millennium Seed Bank. See: www.kew.org/support-kew/adopt-a-seed.
Another way of doing it is through Oxfam. Christian Aid or Cafod where you give to the people of third world countries. You can give all sorts of things such as seeds, tools or tuition to someone who really needs help. I have always liked the idea of giving the tools to people in need so that they can be self suficient rather than just helping them out in the short term. It gives them the dignity of self reliance. See: www.presentaid.org, www.oxfam.org.uk, www.cafod.org.uk or just go in to any Oxfam shop.
The pleasure when giving someone an Oxfam goat is multiplied many fold if your friend wonders just for a second ‘What on earth am I going to do with a b***** goat?’ before they get the full picture.
On the other hand you could go to your local nursery and buy them a nice tree.