When Jonie Delaplane steps into her yard, she looks fondly at a banana tree that is a special part of her landscape.
The tree was a Mother's Day gift from one of her sons three years ago.
"I'm a big tropical plant enthusiast, and it was a really good gift," Delaplane said. "Even though it only has stalks on it right now, it's still a show-stopper."
From a potted arrangement to a tree or shrub, plants and even garden accessories are a popular choice for Mother's Day gifts.
"For the mom who already has a flower garden, consider adding a nice statuary to enhance the area," said Mary Ann Woodworth, of Greenbrier Nursery.
An added benefit of giving plants or other gifts for the garden is that they're often around long after the holiday.
"Plant a small cutting garden so that mom can have fresh flowers whenever she likes," Woodworth suggested. "Raised bed gardens are a good way to successfully grow plants this way."
Some plants to try in a cutting garden are foxgloves, lilies and Gerbera daisies. Another good variety to try is hollyhocks, which are available in a variety of colors.
"A rose garden or even planting an individual shrub each year will always give mom something to remember her special day," Woodworth added. "You could even plant a vegetable or herb garden."
An arbor with a climbing vine or rose offers another alternative to the traditional potted plant. "It will give mom something nice to admire when in the yard. And don't forget to give mom a special place to sit to enjoy the colors and blooms," Woodworth said.
First-time moms present a special opportunity to commemorate the special day.
"Plant a tree and watch it grow right along with the child," Woodworth suggested. "A dogwood with pink blooms would be ideal for a mom with a new baby girl, or a Japanese Maple is another good option," she said. Either tree needs to be planted in a shady area.
House plants and hanging baskets are a can't-miss gift option.
Nerisa Burnett, mother of two, has received a number of hanging baskets over the years. They have brightened her laundry room and perched on her front porch to welcome family and friends.
"I just love plants, and I like to watch them grow," Burnett said. "I like to have them in my house and yard, and the gifts have even inspired me to make some baskets of my own."
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