Gardening With Charlie:

Gifts for the Gardener

By Charlie Capozzi

With the holiday season upon us, itís hard to decide on the best gifts for family and friends. While on the surface there appear to be many gift possibilities for the gardeners in your life, choosing a useful and personal present can be a challenge. After all, no one wants their gift to end up buried and unused on the floor of a garden shed or closet. After gardening most of my life, I have a few favorite gift ideas that seem to ring true no matter where the recipients live or what their special interests may be.

Here are my Top 10 gift ideas for this holiday season:

Compost. I canít imagine any gardener refusing compost. Why not offer to bring your friend some bulk compost or make an outing of it together? He or she will love the company Ö and the compost.

Complete self-watering container garden. If you know an older gardener who has given up gardening for lack of space or energy, get him or her back into the game with a self-watering container garden. These container systems come with soil, fertilizer, seeds and supports, making it easy to grow flowers and vegetables on a back porch.

Garden gloves. You can never have enough good garden gloves ó theyíre so easy to wear out or lose. Find a pair your friend will love and buy a pair for yourself, too.

Pruning holster. Your gardening friend may have pruners but perhaps no place to put them while walking around the garden. Pruning holsters attach to your belt for easy access. (They also will make your gardening friend feel like a cowboy!)

Bulbs for winter flowers. This is a good gift for a budding new gardener. Put together a package of paper white narcissus bulbs, a pot, soil and instructions. Nothing gets the garden passion bubbling like a little greenery, flowers and fragrance in midwinter.

Gift certificate for a massage. Gardeners know aches and pains are part of the gardening hobby. Ease sore muscles with a massage gift certificate to get the kinks out.

Plant markers and pen. This gift is perfect for the practical or absent-minded gardener. Itís a great way to help keep track of old and new plants in the garden.

Garden gnomes and statues. Okay, this gift may be a bit tricky, but if you see a few clay frogs and bunnies in your friendís yard, he or she may well like more. Take your friend on a shopping spree to a local statuary store.

Gardenerís carryall. Gardeners like to accumulate stuff; the problem is having to carry it around. What better gift than a simple carryall in which to store tools, seeds, markers, a water bottle and a cell phone while in the garden?

A day of free labor. Sometimes the best gift for a gardener is you. Give a day of free labor to help your favorite gardener finish off a big planting or building project.


Charlie Nardozzi, a nationally recognized garden writer, book author, speaker and radio and television personality, has appeared on HGTV, PBS and Discovery Channel television networks. He is the senior horticulturist and spokesperson for the National Gardening Association ( and Chief Gardening Officer for the Hilton Garden Inn.


Courtesy of Family Features


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