It’s that time of year again … time to find the perfect holiday gift for that special gardener in your life! Whether that person is an experienced gardener with a garden shed full of tools or is just starting out and has only a few implements to work with, there’s something in our Holiday Gift Guide for everyone.
And, by the way, we’ve personally tested and reviewed each of these products. Just click on the image or title to read the full review.
Best Stocking Stuffers
After spending time working in the garden, I usually come inside with hands covered with dirt (and even under my fingernails, even though I wear gardening gloves). So it’s nice to have a soap that can remove that dirt easily without stripping all the oils from your skin (because who wants dry, cracked hands?). Some of my favorites are Blueberry Pumice soap from Goatboy Soaps, Rosemary Mint with Cornmeal soap from Saipua, and Basil Poppyseed soap from Botanical Interests. All are good scrubbing soaps that leave your hands soft and moisturized.
There are many companies that grow and carry wonderful vegetable, herb, and flower seeds, including organic and heirloom varieties. If you’re looking for something out of the ordinary (and why not?!), here are some online sources that we recommend.
>> Where to Buy Seeds Online
Best Gardening Gifts Under $25
This unique invention lets you easily carry up to 70 lbs of long-handled tools with just one hand. If you’ve ever tried to carry a whole bunch of gardening tools, you know what a juggling act it can be. Made in the USA with high quality materials, the Shovel Sling comes in bright colors (so you won’t lose it in the garden) and solves a common frustration for gardeners with a well-designed product that’s easy to use. I’ve used it to carry rakes, shovels, loppers, and even a string trimmer!
ThermaCELL Mosquito Repellent Device
It may be winter in some parts of the country, but in other parts the mosquitoes are still out in force. The ThermaCELL device emits a repellent that keeps mosquitoes and other biting insects away within a 225 square foot area. It uses a butane cartridge to heat up a small mat that’s soaked in mosquito repellent (don’t worry, there are no open flames). There’s no need to hose yourself down with DEET and there’s hardly any odor. And yes, it works.
Ultimate Hose Nozzle
Tired of sprayers that don’t even last one season? Made out of high-grade stainless steel, non-corroding brass, reinforced fiberglass, and Santoprene rubber, the Ultimate Hose Nozzle is built to last. Even after three years of mistreatment, mine is still going strong. It’s available in a variety of colors, has five different spray patterns, and can be taken apart for cleaning. Not that it’s not as effective with low water pressure, but in normal pressure conditions it’s an exceptional nozzle that’s practically indestructible.
Dramm OneTouch Rain Wand
Dramm makes the sprayers that you see used in many garden centers, which is why this is such a good nozzle. The head is made with solid aluminum that’s pierced with 400 precision-cut holes, resulting in a steady and gentle stream of water. The OneTouch system lets you turn the water on/off by simply sliding the valve with your thumb (and we tested that valve to make sure it would stand up to frequent use!). This lightweight watering wand is available in a rainbow of colors and two lengths (30″ and 16″).
If you want to grow more veggies in a small space, this simple tool makes it easy to quickly lay out the entire planting bed without measuring. Just rake the soil level and then press the Garden Stamp into the soil; it makes precisely-spaced indents in which to place your seeds or plants. It even comes with a handy Planting Guide that shows you how to use the Garden Stamp to sow 64 common vegetables, herbs, and flowers. Square Foot Gardening made easy!
Best Gardening Gifts Under $50
$39.95 (small) or $44.95 (large)
Pike’s Original Maine Garden Hod
This basket is specifically designed to carry and wash harvested fruit, veggies, and flowers. Made in the USA with wooden end panels, a curved handle, and a food-grade vinyl coated wire mesh basket (so it won’t rust), this versatile basket stands up well to extended use and is attractive enough to leave on the kitchen counter when it’s full.
Lesche Digging Tool
An incredibly versatile tool that will take the place of several others, the Lesche Digging Tool is made in the USA with heat-treated steel that can be used not only for digging, but for prying up paving stones, moving rocks, digging through gravel, and so much more. The serrated edge cuts through tough stuff while the flat edge slices cleanly. It even comes in a left-handed version.
ARS Pruning Shears
ARS produces some of the best pruning tools on the market (in my opinion they’re even better than Felco). These have a rotating handle (practically a must-have if you do a lot of pruning) but are also available with a regular handle and come in three sizes. I love the single-handed “squeeze-open-lock system”, incredibly hard blades (meaning less sharpening required), and easy availability of spare parts. These are my go-to pruning shears and are well worth the price.
$49.95 (Original) or $43.95 (Basic)
Rose Gauntlets from Bear Wallow Gloves
These comfortable, durable, and well-designed gauntlet-style gardening gloves are made in the USA with goatskin gloves and cowhide sleeves. Excellent for handling any type of thorny plant or anything that’s likely to scratch (cats?). Perfect for the rose gardener!
$38 – $99
Engraved Garden Stone from Adirondack Stone Works
Do you love the idea of an engraved stone in the garden but haven’t been able to find one that says just what you want? Adirondack Stone Works has solved that problem by creating custom-carved stones at affordable prices. Each stone is made out of 2″ thick bluestone quarried in southern New York, is chiseled by hand into a natural-looking shape, and is then engraved with your choice of words and/or images. These are high quality pieces that stand the test of time.
$39.95, plus $11.95 shipping
Puddle-Proof Field Bag
Designed to carry just about anything, this lightweight yet durable waterproof bag has six pockets, two main compartments, and two mesh pockets to keep the contents organized. It stands upright, has two carry straps, and is machine washable. If you want easy access to all of your smaller gardening stuff, this is the bag for you.
Spear Head Spade
The Spear Head is another ergonomic shovel developed to make digging tasks easier, particularly for those with back problems. Lightweight, sturdy, and available in three sizes, this precision digging tool makes quick work of common gardening tasks, like dividing, lifting, and planting. It easily cuts through roots and provides great leverage for digging.
Gardening Gifts Under $100
$64.99 plus tax and shipping
This ergonomic shovel was designed specifically for women by the women at Green Heron Tools. Available in three sizes, it’s a hybrid tool that combines features of both a shovel and spade to accommodate the unique needs of a woman’s body shape, height, and digging style. Versatile enough for many soil conditions, this lightweight yet strong shovel provides improved leverage and the flexibility to use it many different ways. If you have arthritis, shoulder or back pain, or reduced strength, this shovel would be an excellent choice.
A compact, lightweight, battery-powered blower that makes those annoying sweeping and cleaning tasks easier and faster. This is not a heavy-duty leaf blower but if you want a convenient tool to clear off your deck, patio, garden beds, etc., then it’s a good option. I use it all the time and my yard has never looked tidier!
For the Bird Watcher
Wingscapes AutoFeeder Bird Feeder
A battery-powered, programmable wild bird feeder that releases bird seed up to four times per day at the times you specify. As a result, seed lasts longer and you can program it to release seed at the times you’ll be there to watch. This is a large, heavy-duty feeder that will last a long time but be sure to hang it from something that’s sturdy and securely fastened (we recommend the APS system below).
$76.99 for the basic setup
Advanced Pole System (APS)
This bird feeder pole system from Wild Birds Unlimited has a wide range of parts that allow you to customize it to fit your needs. It screws into the ground for stability and has a black powder-coated finish that doesn’t rust or stain. Best of all, there’s an available Squirrel Baffle that really works – squirrel problem solved! WBU is also my go-to source for feeders and high-quality bird seed.
For the Techie Gardener
$139 to $179, depending on accessories
The SimGar (short for The Simple Garden) takes “self-watering” containers to a new level, with a solar-operated pump that circulates water to keep the soil consistently moist. It’s simple to assemble, can be placed anywhere that gets enough sun, and grows plants (particularly greens) quickly and with a minimum of fuss. With a 30-gallon water reservoir, this planter lets you “set it and forget it” for 3 or 4 weeks.
For Gardeners With Large Gardens
Approximately $2,000, depending on model
If you have a lot of heavy material to move (such as compost, soil, gravel, manure) then this wheelbarrow will save your back. It’s a sturdy, well-designed wheelbarrow that runs for a full day on a single charge (plug it in overnight), moves easily and quickly, dumps the full contents with little effort, and goes backward as readily as it goes forward. It’s not cheap, but you get what you pay for.
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