Outside the Box Flower Picks for Mother’s Day

Wow your favorite mom with flowers she won’t forget.

In my family, Mother’s Day means trips to the local garden center, where we hunt for the perfect hanging basket. The prize find is usually a fully budded fuchsia, although we’ve been known to go for a fuzzy chenille plant or waxy-petalled non-stop begonia. The way we see it, Mother’s Day is a bona fide excuse to spend money on spring flowers.

Tulip Bouquet Held by Woman

Woman With Tulip Bouquet

Celebrate Mother’s Day with a bouquet of garden-fresh tulips.

Photo by: Stargazer Barn at Stargazerbarn.com

Stargazer Barn at Stargazerbarn.com

If your Mother’s Day gift repertoire is stuck in a rut of jewelry, spa products and World’s Best Mom paraphernalia, step up your game with a gift guaranteed to impress: flowers. We’re not talking your basic supermarket bouquet, but something a little more eye-catching, like specialty cut flowers (no roses or carnations), perennials for the garden or an easy-grows-it indoor bloomer.

Bleeding Heart

Bleeding Heart Dicentra Gold Heart

'Gold Heart' Bleeding Heart

Brighten a shady spot with the glowing leaves of 'Gold Heart' bleeding heart.

Photo by: Bailey Nurseries at Baileynurseries.com

Bailey Nurseries at Baileynurseries.com

Nothing tells Mom you love her like the dainty heart-shaped flowers of bleeding heart. The traditional form unfurls blue-green leaves that offer a lovely backdrop to the pink and white blooms. A recent variety, ‘Gold Heart’, unfurls gold leaves, giving this beloved favorite a new look that’s perfect for turning up the lights in a shade garden. Bleeding heart typically disappears as summer arrives, but you can encourage a longer show with regular watering during spring.

Heirloom Climbing Nasturtium

Heirloom Climbing Nasturtium

Climbing Phoenix Nasturtium

Colorful edible flowers blanket this heirloom nasturtium vine.

Photo by: Copyright Reneesgarden.com

Copyright Reneesgarden.com

Ignite some floral fireworks for Mom with an annual vine guaranteed to generate neighborhood envy. Climbing Phoenix nasturtium is an heirloom vine that happily clambers up a trellis, tossing open split petal blooms in a rainbow of hues. It makes a great Mother’s Day gift from children—seeds are the perfect size for little hands to help with planting. Nasturtium plants don’t require heavy soil prep to thrive (they actually grow better in poor soil). Flowers and young leaves are edible, making meals a festive occasion. This is a great gift from young folks looking to spend some allowance. A packet of seeds costs under $5.

Perennial Hibiscus

Summerific Perfect Storm Hibiscus Perennial

Perfect Storm Hibiscus

Deep burgundy leaves complement the pink and white blooms of Perfect Storm hibiscus.

Photo by: Proven Winners at Provenwinners.com

Proven Winners at Provenwinners.com

Moms know how to make every day special, and hibiscus returns the favor. This exotic bloomer opens traffic-stopping flowers up to 8 inches across. White blossoms with a red eye look stunning against burgundy leaves. This is a perennial hibiscus (hardy in Zones 4-9) that’s naturally compact. It grows about 3 feet high, an ideal size for a porch or patio pot or an easy addition to planting beds. Pair it with a pretty container that matches Mom’s outdoor décor, and you’ll be her favorite. In regions with cold winters, include a love-gift coupon good for helping her tuck the hibiscus into a flower bed come fall.

Luscious Lemons

Meyer Lemon Houseplant

Meyer Lemon

Meet an easy-growing indoor citrus tree: ‘Meyer’ lemon.

Photo by: Logee’s Plants for Home & Garden at Logees.com

Logee’s Plants for Home & Garden at Logees.com

Even Moms who aren’t greenthumbs can find success with easy-growing Meyer lemon. The fruit from this citrus favorite is prized by chefs for its intense flavor, which puts its supermarket cousins to shame. Waxy white blossoms have a can’t-miss fragrance, and leaves have a natural gloss that’s eye-catching. A plant in an 8-inch pot can be ripening up to 14 lemons at once. Grow Meyer lemon indoors year-round, or place it on a patio or balcony for summer. In cold regions, winter the plant indoors near a sunny window. The trick with Meyer lemon is to let soil dry out between waterings.

Farm-Fresh Flowers

Telstar Dutch Iris

'Telstar' Dutch Iris

Sparkling purple ‘Telstar’ Dutch iris makes a stunning arrangement.

Photo by: Stargazer Barn at Stargazerbarn.com

Stargazer Barn at Stargazerbarn.com

Make Mom swoon with a bouquet of specialty cut flowers, like the Telstar iris. Stargazer Barn in Coastal Northern California is a working farm that raises fresh flowers sure to wow. Their offerings include fringed tulips, fragrant lilies and stunning irises. These farmers aim to enchant and do so easily with pure flower power. It’s a fresh-from-the-garden bouquet sure to please moms of all ages.

Next Up

Gifts Guaranteed to Make Your Mother’s Day

Try one of these Mother’s Day gift ideas from our Creative Geniuses.

A Cool DIY-Mom Mother's Day Gift Guide

Show your mom you appreciate her adventurous, outdoorsy, crafty, creative side with a gift that celebrates her DIY passions.

Easter Lily Care

Follow these tips to keep those lovely flowers blooming, inside and out.

10 Valentine's Flower-Buying Tips From a Bloom-Crazy Guy

Think red roses are the end-all? Want to save money on flowers this year? Get great flower tips from an expert to make your Valentine's Day one for the ages.

Planting and Selecting Gardenias

Learn how to grow these beautiful and fragrant flowering shrubs.

7 Ways to Use Marigold Flowers

Learn why you should grow marigold flowers.

How to Keep Your Orchid Happy

Keep that beauty growing! Find out everything you need to know to help potted orchids thrive.

7 Things You Need to Know About Champagne

This Mother’s Day show her she raised a class act by uncorking a bottle of the finest bubbly you can manage.

How to Repot Orchids

Learn how to repot a moth orchid.

13 Favorite Winter Flowers

Grow these flowers to keep your garden colorful throughout the season.