Gifts for the gardener
Gardeners are famously observational. It’s one in their vast array of talents. Thus, selecting a special gift for your favorite gardener can be a bit of a challenge. Those practicing the botanical arts are likely to have already eyed something useful or impulsively helped themselves to the desired accouterment by the time gift-giving season arrives. Here is a brief selection of ideas to stimulate the minds of those shopping for their favorite gardener or gardener-to-be. A stand-out publication is
by Johanna Silver. The story of the development of Ruth Bancroft’s garden in Northern California, it is a wonderful picture book, but also an inspirational narrative of one woman’s vision. There’s lots of information on desert plants as her landscape includes xeric planting.
from Timber Press is a lovely folio of “135 resilient, water-smart choices for a lovely garden.” Compiled by the experts at Plant Select, the beautifully printed images and well-designed presentation offer concise information and a variety of traits garden- ers look for when selecting new plants.
As for gardening tools, nothing could be more efficient than a well-made sheath for a five gallon bucket (or stand-alone tote) designed to carry tools, weeds, or other essentials with style and affordability. The Garden’s Puddle-proof Bucket Tote is a practical and attractive offering.
Every gardener appreciates a fine pair of gloves. The wear-and-tear of these essentials goes unappreciated by those who simply admire gardens without putting their hands in the soil. Happily, there is a variety of choices. Rose gloves are not just for roses. Thorny shrubs and trees that need pruning are often sources of injury in the garden. These long-sleeved shields protect against all that pokes, including the occasional cactus that may need to be trimmed or moved.
With the diversity of seasons we experience in Santa Fe, a unique set of footwear for the garden could never be refused. A staple from the east coast, Muck Shoes come in a variety of colors and are durable even in the desert sense. They allow their user to travail through mud, moss, and manure with equal aplomb and are easily washed (or not!).
Another charming and original gift addresses fruit collection. From canvas orchard sacks to woven baskets and back-packs, these accessories are often as aesthetically pleasing as they are functional.
For as many gardeners as there are, there are equal amounts of well-desired gifts. Some of the tried and true passions of well-heeled gardeners include:
Seeds of all varieties, from vegetable to herb, wildflower, and exotics. A gardener is always willing to attempt the unattainable or explore the fashion of the new.
Seasonal bulbs are something available locally and through catalogs and nary a garden has too many.
Bird houses, bee houses, bat houses and other garden shelters are a wonderful opportunity to personalize the outdoor space that your gardener inhabits.
If all else fails, your garden-variety potted plant will likely be just as welcome.
Claire Dishman, a local homeopath, has been a Master Gardener in Santa Fe since 2014. Prior to taking up homeopathy, she was a furniture and lighting designer in New York City and Chicago.