This weekly column is being reproduced with the permission of Steve Smith, The Whistling Gardener, and owner of Sunnyside Nursery in Marysville.
The photo in this article is courtesy of ProFlowers.
Need a break from all those chores I left you with last week? Can’t face moving one more bale of compost? Tired of raking the never ending litter from that massive wind storm?
Take a break and go have some fun looking for gifts for the gardener in your life, even if it is only you. Here are some ideas to start with.
Radius Tools: These are the tools with the funny looking colorful circular handles that are designed to reduce fatigue. They come in two styles, the Pro Series which are professional grade and retail for around $60 and the Pro-Lite Series which sell for around $40.
Both are quality tools that will last a life time.
Men generally prefer the heavier Pro Series while the ladies gravitate to the lighter Pro-Lite styles. You will find shovels, forks, edgers, weeders, transplanters and just about every configuration you can imagine in these well-made tools. Despite their goofy look, these round handles actually work.
Botanical Interest Seed Sprouter: Here’s an idea that harkens back to my hippie days when I used to make my own yogurt and mayonnaise and grow most of my own food.
Sprouting seeds is easy and a nutritious way to eat your vegetables whether you put them on sandwiches, salads or blend them into your smoothy.
Botanical Interest has a wonderful collection of different types of seeds suitable for sprouting so you don’t have to settle for just alfalfa or mung beans. Cost of the sprouter runs around $24.00 and the assorted seed packets range from $2.99 to $3.99.
Sloggers footware: It’s the rainy season and every gardener needs a pair of rubber boots or at least some slip on water proof shoes. For under $40 you can purchase a very colorful and decorative pair of Sloggers that will keep your feet dry and put a smile on your face all at the same time.
The Farmer’s Almanac booklet and/or calendar: Both of these sell for under ten bucks so they make a good stocking stuffer and while most of what the Almanac says I take with a huge grain of salt it is still fun to read (sorry if that sounds like blasphemy to all you Almanac devotees). The calendar is especially nice to look at as each month has a different illustration.
Hummingbird feeders: Let’s not forget that our feathered friends often depend on us to help them survive the winter and if you want hummers to stick around then you will need to put out a feeder.
We have a pair in the nursery that greet us every morning waiting to be fed.
For under $20 for a plastic feeder or over $40 for a glass one and a packet of food you too can enjoy the antics of these incredible little birds all winter long. While you are at it also consider purchasing some suet for the rest of the birds in your garden.
Maritme Northwest Garden Guide: This is a locally produced bible on growing veggies and fruits in the Pacific Northwest and is great reading material for those winter days when it is too cold or wet to go outside. They sell for under $20 and will become one of your favorite reference books whether you are a casual or hardcore gardener.
Hope this gives you some ideas to get started on. I will have a few more next week for you procrastinators who still haven’t got into gear.
Steve Smith is owner of Sunnyside Nursery in Marysville and can be reached online at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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