Great Mother's Day gifts that won't cost a fortune

How to save on gifts for mom's big day.
Posted at 7:31 AM, May 08, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-08 07:31:14-04

Despite higher credit card bills, and high interest rates on those cards, most Americans will still swipe for a meaningful gift for mom this year. And after three years of high inflation, you may feel like you need to spend hundreds of dollars for Mother's Day this year.

But that's not the case. Whether you're at a local garden center or at the mall, a little time and creativity can really help you save.

Chris McEown is the manager of Denny McEown's Bloomin Garden Center. He says the simplest and most beautiful gift for mom is a hanging planter for $30 to $50.

"It is probably the most traditional gift for Mother's Day," he said.

No place to hang one? He suggests a pre-made planter filled with geraniums and petunias.

"Mom gets credit for having these beautiful flowers on her front step," he said, "but she didn't have to get her hands dirty at all."

For a floral gift that keeps on giving, he says to consider a perennial, like a rose bush, hydrangea or lilac.

"It's going to come back year after year, and mom will always remember that special Mother's Day," McEown said.

Other great gifts for mom

In addition to flowers, greeting cards and special outings are the most popular gifts for moms, according to the National Retail Federation.

Samantha Gordon, deals editor for Consumer Reports, also recommends classic "giftable" items.

"Think fitness trackers, smartwatches, headphones," she said, "as well as home goods. Get your mom a nice new pair of sheets."

Consider DIY gifts

Or take a stab at something homemade.

"The dollar store is a fantastic place to get supplies, or thrift stores. There's so much repurposing that can be done with thrift store items," said Carrie Higgins, founder of the blog Making Lemonade.

Higgins posted more than two dozen DIY gift ideas. They include:

  • Candles
  • Flavored salts
  • Photo books
  • Stamped tea towels

"That's just going to be a couple dollars for some fabric paint and the tea towels," she said.

Other ways to save ahead of Mother's Day are:

  • Buying Mother's Day cards at the dollar store, for a quarter of the price of grocery or drug store cards
  • Making your own cards, which mom will cherish
  • Spicing up plants by decorating an inexpensive pot yourself

Tina Marshall says if you don't have a lot to spend, don't stress.
"My mom takes anything," she said. "She loves it all."

In the end, anything you do, even on a tight budget, can make mom smile.

That way you don't waste your money.


"Don't Waste Your Money" is a registered trademark of Scripps Media, Inc. ("Scripps").

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