The $4 Trader Joe’s Find I Always Bring as a Host Gift

published Aug 2, 2023
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Canvas bag filled with Trader Joe's groceries on countertop.
Credit: Sarah Crowley

While I love going to the beach and the pool during the summertime, my favorite warm-weather activity is hosting and attending dinner parties. From my own rooftop gathering with summer-themed cocktails to a barbecue at a friend’s house, I plan most of my summer schedule around these events. As both a host and a guest, I love the space I’m in to feel welcoming and look vibrant. So there’s one gift I always buy myself and bring to other hosts to give every indoor or outdoor gathering the perfect touch of summer: a bouquet of fresh eucalyptus.

My weekly grocery trips to Trader Joe’s always involve the essentials: my favorite dessert, fresh produce and protein, and a small bunch of eucalyptus to hang on my shower head. During one of my Trader Joe’s runs last summer, however, I was inspired by a Pinterest post to create a eucalyptus garland runner for my rooftop dining table (and it was perfect timing for a small dinner party I had coming up). Needless to say, the garland was a total hit with my guests and I decided that it would make a great gift for anyone else hosting their own gathering. 

While bottles of wine and homemade desserts are excellent options to bring as a gift, I found that gifting eucalyptus is a more unique way to give thanks to a host, while treating them to a little aromatherapy. Plus, there are so many ways to use it. I gifted eucalyptus to my mom for hosting a Memorial Day barbecue, and she added it to a vase of flowers, creating an even more beautiful arrangement. One of my friends used the leaves of my gifted eucalyptus as decorative “natural confetti” for her dinner table. My sister, on the other hand, hung her eucalyptus gift from me in her shower (hey, not every host gift has to be shared!).

This gift from Trader Joe’s (only $3.99 per bunch) is affordable, but doesn’t feel cheap. It’s thoughtful and flexible to wherever the host may want a little extra greenery. You can even pair it with a more expensive bottle of wine or a zero-proof spirit if you like to follow the high-low rule for host gifts. No matter how the host decides to use this beautiful, versatile, and fragrant gift, it’s a hit every time.