I love surprising my friends with gifts, especially non-traditional ones.
Tired of Sending Flowers?
As an avid gardener, I have sent my share of flower bouquets to friends and family as gifts to say "thank you" or "get well." However, I've recently found some great alternatives to flowers that are just as impressive and seem to be well-received. Everyone loves a sweet treat every now and again, so why not send them something different the next time you want to say "happy birthday" or show them just how much you love them!
Below you'll find my five favorite alternatives to flowers. I've sent them all to friends and family over the past few years, and I know that your gift recipients will love them as much as mine did!
1. Cookie Bouquets
Send flowers they can eat! If you haven't ever sent or received one of these edible delights, you are missing out. The basic concept is that gourmet cookies are baked on stems and then arranged in a container like flowers. As you can see in the photo to the right, sometimes the cookies are shaped like real flowers...in this instance, tulips. But you can also find cut-out cookies in just about any shape such as baby bottles or houses for a housewarming occasion. Often times, you can personalize the center cookie with a custom saying like "Happy Birthday, Bob."
Many other companies make cookie bouquets as well. If you are looking for a great anniversary or Valentine's Day gift, consider giving long stem cookies that are arranged either in a vase or floral long stem box. At CookieGiftBaskets.com, you can buy cookie gifts that feature gourmet chocolate chip cookies that are wrapped in colorful cellophane and then arranged in creative containers like pots and ceramic items such as letter holders. They even offer their chocolate chip cookies in a sugar-free version if you have a recipient that has special dietary needs.
If you are a baker and you want to save money, you can make your own cookie bouquets to give as gifts. The Youtube video below is just one example of how you can make your own cookie pops to arrange in a container at home.
How to Make Your Own Cookie Pops
2. Snack Basket
Instead of sending flowers to the hospital for a sick relative, consider giving a gift basket that is overflowing with goodies along with some stuff such as cards or Sudoku puzzles to entertain the patient. The get well gift basket shown to the right is priced from $34 and up.
In addition to sending a get well soon message, you can find gift baskets for just about any occasion and theme that you can think of from sports-themed gifts to watering cans filled with snacks for a gardener to thanks a million baskets for a corporate client. The possibilities are truly endless.
3. Edible Fruit Arrangement
Edible Arrangements specializes in bouquets of fruit that are cut and arranged to look like a floral display. Like gift baskets, these arrangements are available for just about any occasion or season. The fruit bouquet shown to the right arrives in a small watering can container making it the perfect choice for a spring or summer gift. In addition to sending these arrangements to recipients, they are ideal to use as centerpieces on a buffet at a bridal or baby shower. The only drawback is that the fruit doesn't last long since it is already peeled and cut so keep that in mind when deciding what to send and when to send it.
How to Make Your Own Fruit Bouquet
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4. Candy Bouquet
If you've got a sweet tooth in the family or as a friend, then they'll love getting a bouquet of candy. Like the cookie bouquets that I mentioned above, these bouquets feature candy that is placed on floral stems or wooden skewers and then artfully arranged in a unique container. I've seen candy bouquets that are arranged in toy train banks, balloon boxes (like the one shown to the right), flower planters, and more. I've even seen them arranged in edible bases where boxed candy items such as Junior Mints or sugar babies are adhered together to form the base....the entire bouquet is edible. The great thing about candy gifts are that they usually last a long time, unlike flower bouquets.
5. Strawberry Roses
My final pick for alternatives to flowers are chocolate-dipped strawberry "roses." These delectable morsels are arranged in a long stem box for presentation to your recipient. The only real drawback of this gift is that they are highly perishable (even more so than flowers themselves) so I recommend buying only a half dozen unless you think the recipient will be sharing with others. These roses are an excellent choice for Valentine's Day, anniversaries, or just to say "I Love You." If you give them for one of these occasions, chances are you'll get to partake in the chocolate-covered goodness as well. The pictured chocolate-dipped strawberries are available from Shari's Berries.
How to Make Chocolate Covered Strawberries
© 2010 Janice S
Leave Your Edible Alternatives or Comments Here!
poetryman6969 on November 30, 2013:
I want a cookie bouquet!
Nicole S Hanson from Minnesota on April 06, 2012:
I would MUCH rather receive edible flowers than real ones. They'd be so much more practical :)
Gail Sobotkin from South Carolina on February 28, 2012:
Great hub. I love giving and receiving gift baskets but have never made my own because I thought it would be too difficult. I appreciate the "Make Your Own" videos you included in this comprehensive hub.
Voted up across the board except for funny. Thanks for sharing this info.
jhdesign1 on September 26, 2011:
Here's another fun edible gift idea: boxofbeans.com. Boxes filled with individual tubes of jelly beans that together form letters & pictures. Check it out!!
Susan Hazelton from Northern New York on August 08, 2010:
I didn't know there was such a thing as a cookie bouquet. It looks great. I have received the edible fruit arrangement and loved it. You have included many wonderful choices. Great hub.
Gift Experts on August 06, 2010:
We have a local place that makes the most awesome fruit display deliveries. Yum!
Sarah Carlsley from Minnesota on July 28, 2010:
Yum. I instantly got hungry looking at those iced cookies in the cookie baskets. I would definitely enjoy being on the receiving end of those! Yummy article :)
billyaustindillon on July 08, 2010:
I agree - we have been sending fruit and food baskets more and more over the years. Some of the fruit baskets out there are amazing. The chocolate mixes also are great, nuts too. Nice hub. Cookies are a great idea.
prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on June 11, 2010:
I found something great here. I love your idea. Flowers is always beautiful. Nice hub. Thanks for share.
Sandy Mertens from Wisconsin, USA on June 10, 2010:
What a delicious gift.
Christine Mulberry on June 04, 2010:
I've sent cookie bouquets before, what a great alternative. Now, what I would want is a fruit bouquet...that sounds perfect.
epigramman on May 26, 2010:
personally speaking I LIKE SENDING your hubs to other people: they're nutritious, intelligent, insightful and witty.
In other words - like a literary buffet of delightful choices!!
StrictlyQuotes from Australia on May 26, 2010:
Wow! What an awesome and authentic idea!
BevsPaper from Central Indiana on May 26, 2010:
Love those Cookie Bouquets! What great edible alternatives to sending flowers!