Do you have a forager in your life? Someone who prefers the gathering side over the hunting side? If so, you’re probably wondering what kinds of practical but still awesome gifts for foragers are out there. Maybe you’re the person who loves nothing more than to get out into the bush and hunt for mushrooms, berries, herbs and other wild plants, and you never know what to say when someone asks you what they could get you for Christmas.
For me, I’ve started getting into mushroom picking over the last few years (chanterelle mushrooms specifically – yum!) with my partner’s family, and I certainly know a few people who would really appreciate some of these gifts!
Either way, if you are looking for some great gift ideas for foragers, check these out! I came up with this list of some of the best useful and practical gifts for the forager or mushroom hunter in your life.
Here are 28 awesome and practical gifts for foragers that will appeal to any nature lover. Read on to get some inspiration!
- 1. A mushroom identification guide
- 2. An edible plant identification guide
- 3. A good quality mushroom knife
- 4. A pair of binoculars
- 5. A foraging basket
- 6. A set of containers
- 7. A set of gardening gloves
- 8. A reliable guidebook for the area or region
- 9. A comfortable pair of boots
- 10. A pair of pruning shears
- 11. A pocket knife or multipurpose tool
- 12. A comfortable backpack
- 13. A leather or canvas foraging pouch
- 14. A shovel with a pointed blade
- 15. A tool belt
- 16. A tea infuser set
- 17. A handheld GPS navigator
- 18. A compass
- 19. A set of drying racks or a mesh drying net
- 20. A food dehydrator
- 21. A sifter
- 22. A spice grinder
- 23. A mortar and pestle
- 24. A set of herb scissors
- 25. A set of jars or glass storage containers
- 26. A subscription to a foraging magazine
- 27. A foraging recipe book
- 28. A foraging journal
- Final Thoughts
1. A mushroom identification guide
Unless your friend is an expert mycologist or highly experienced mushroom forager, it can be hard to tell the difference between edible mushrooms and poisonous ones. You do not want to take any risks. I am sure most foragers know this, but you should only harvest mushrooms that you can 100% positively identify. A guidebook will help foragers expand their mushroom horizons safely and provide that extra verification when it comes to those mushrooms that are harder to identify than others.
2. An edible plant identification guide
Keeping with the guide theme, an all-purpose edible plant identification guide is a forager’s bible. From edible flowers to roots to herbs to fungi, an ultimate guidebook is key to great foraging and is an excellent resource to have around. Sure, you can always look things up online, but foragers may find themselves in remote areas with no reception, and having a good hard copy of a guide is just so much nicer than always having to Google things.
3. A good quality mushroom knife
A good quality mushroom knife is essential for any forager. There are special foraging knives with curved blades designed specifically for safely and cleanly slicing through mushroom stems instead of crushing them. A lot of mushroom knives have a brush at the end of the handle, which allows foragers to quickly clean off dirt and debris as they harvest.
In my opinion, a great mushroom knife is one of the best and most classic gifts for foragers out there.
4. A pair of binoculars
Depending on what you’re foraging for, you might need to scan large areas of land to find your prize. For example, a forager might be on the lookout for a patch of clover or yarrow growing in a field. Binoculars can help them to spot potential treasures from a distance.
Besides actually looking for plants, you’re sure to come across a wide variety of wildlife when you’re out foraging, including some beautiful bird species! Having a pair of binoculars on hand is a great way to enhance your overall experience and help spot some amazing wildlife.
5. A foraging basket
This may seem like a no-brainer, but a sturdy basket specifically designed for foraging will make the whole process much easier, both in terms of carrying around the bounty and in terms of keeping an eye on what’s been collected. Sure, buckets and pails are great, but they are made of plastic and not breathable, and because of their shape, things at the bottom can get crushed and make a mess.
Good foraging baskets have good airflow, are lighter and shallower, and some have straps so both hands are free for picking.
Okay, I said earlier that a mushroom knife is one of the best gifts for foragers, but a mushroom knife and a foraging basket is perfect for that special someone who is just getting started with foraging!
6. A set of containers
Everyone can use nice containers – especially when they are stackable and save you space. Foragers might end up with bunches of various herbs, plants, flowers, berries – you name it. Why not give them a nice coordinating set of cute storage containers to keep everything fresh in the fridge?
7. A set of gardening gloves
A good pair of gloves will protect their hands from sharp thorns, scratchy branches, irritating plants, insects and other offenders while they’re out foraging. Make sure to get gloves that fit snugly and aren’t too bulky. Gardening gloves work perfectly.
8. A reliable guidebook for the area or region
There are many great guides on the market, but make sure to get one that covers the local area. A guidebook for the overall region might provide some new insight on certain species that they did not know about.
9. A comfortable pair of boots
Foraging can be tough on the feet, so make sure your forager friend or loved one has a good pair of hiking boots that can stand up to miles of walking through rough terrain. This is one of the more personal gifts for foragers, since most people prefer to try on boots before they buy them, so this might be a good suggestion to see if they would be interested, or you could simply get them a gift card to their favorite footwear store and suggest they use it to buy a pair of boots for themselves.
10. A pair of pruning shears
Pruning shears make gathering herbs and upright plants a breeze. Foragers can easily snip off twigs, stems and leaves without getting their hands dirty or sticky. Some plants have a lot of sap!
11. A pocket knife or multipurpose tool
A folding pocket knife or, better yet, a multipurpose tool is a great practical gift for foragers. It doesn’t take up a lot of space, and you never know when it might come in handy. It’s just a great all-around tool to have at any time!
12. A comfortable backpack
A backpack is perfect for carrying all the essentials for a day of foraging, including a water bottle, snacks, and many other things that are on this list! Make sure to look for a rugged backpack with adjustable straps and a hip belt to help take the weight off the shoulders and not ride up when the person bends down.
13. A leather or canvas foraging pouch
This is another one of those classic gifts for foragers. Your favorite forager might prefer a pouch that clips to their belt rather than carrying around a basket or backpack. Or, better yet, they could fill up the pouch, empty it into a backpack, bucket or basket, and repeat. Either way, canvas foraging pouches are super convenient, fold up or roll up when empty, and are made of waterproof material.
14. A shovel with a pointed blade
For those who like to forage for roots, a shovel is a great gift idea. Make sure to get one with a pointed blade as opposed to flat to make it easier to dig in compacted soil.
15. A tool belt
Someone who is carrying around foraging equipment like shears, knives and scissors might appreciate a nice tool belt with pouches to keep them close by and easily accessible.
16. A tea infuser set
For the forager who enjoys making herbal teas, consider a special tea infuser set with a nice mug to go with it so they can enjoy their healthy blends.
17. A handheld GPS navigator
For those diehard foragers who drive out to the middle of nowhere with no cell reception (and keep you worried they’ll get lost!), a handheld GPS navigator is great for tracking your route and exploring remote areas.
18. A compass
Okay, maybe the GPS is overkill for a lot of people (and a bit on the pricy side). A compass is a simple and very helpful addition to a forager’s setup. Sure, phones have compass apps, but what if the battery dies? You don’t want to think about anyone getting lost, but when you’re always looking at the ground and wandering around in the bush, it’s easy to quickly lose track of where you are. Anyone who is going out into the wilderness should carry a compass!
19. A set of drying racks or a mesh drying net
These will come in handy for drying herbs, flowers and other foraged delicacies before freezing or storing.
20. A food dehydrator
If you want to take it a step further, a food dehydrator can be used to fully dehydrate berries, herbs, mushrooms – you name it! Dehydrating is a form of preserving food for longer-term storage.
21. A sifter
A sifter can come in handy to help with removing debris from seeds, nuts and small berries.
22. A spice grinder
A spice grinder is great for pulverizing dried herbs and spices into potent powders. Coffee grinders work great for this, or you can get electric grinders specifically for herbs and spices.
23. A mortar and pestle
For a more rustic way to grind up your herbs and spices or to crush rather than pulverize, consider a mortar and pestle as a great gift for foragers. You can get some really beautiful granite and marble ones that are nice and heavy and are rough enough inside to be effective. There’s something so satisfying when you crush up your herbs by hand.
Plus, I find that a mortar and pestle is better for fresh herbs when you want to make a paste, and an electric spice grinder is good for dried herbs when you want to make a powder.
24. A set of herb scissors
Herb scissors look like regular scissors with multiple sets of blades. Cutting up herbs with scissors is already faster than using a knife, but these scissors are even better for quickly chopping up freshly-foraged herbs in large amounts!
25. A set of jars or glass storage containers
A simple but useful gift for foragers is a set of jars or glass containers. These can be used for storing dried herbs, spices, tea blends, etc. They should ideally be stored away from direct light for best results.
You could also include a nice fancy label set to go along with them!
26. A subscription to a foraging magazine
This one is a little more niche, but it’s a great way to stay up-to-date on all the latest foraging news and tips. Your forager you have in mind might not consider spending money on an “extra” purchase like this, so treating them to a cool magazine subscription for a year gives them some great reading material and keeps them learning.
Print magazines are better than digital in this case, as they are much more likely to read and enjoy them when they have a physical copy right there on their table. Print magazines just feel more valuable than a pdf, you know what I mean? Plus, it makes a great conversation starter to have some interesting reads on their coffee table.
27. A foraging recipe book
A recipe book is a wonderful gift idea for foragers – flipping through a specialty recipe book all based on healthy, foraged ingredients? Sign me up! It’s a great gift for foragers to learn new recipes and expand their palettes.
28. A foraging journal
Keeping a journal is a great way for foragers to document their foraging adventures and keep track of what species were collected and where so they know for next time.
As you can see, there are tons of gifts for foragers that would be perfect for that special gatherer in your life. With these gifts, they’ll be able to enjoy their hobby even more – and you’ll be sure to put a smile on their face. Practical and useful gifts are the best!
With any of these gifts, your forager friend is sure to be well equipped for their next adventure.
And if you haven’t tried it already, I highly recommend joining your forager friend or loved one on one of their adventures and experiencing it for yourself. Spending time in the great outdoors, enjoying nature’s bounty (while leaving plenty behind to be sustainable, of course) is so calming for the soul.
Plus, it’s so interesting to learn about the many species of plants in the area and all their health benefits. And it’s a great opportunity for birding and wildlife spotting!
What do you think about this list of gifts for foragers? Is there something that catches your eye, or do you have anything to add? Let me know in the comments!