by Matt Gibson
Shopping for a gardener friend can be fun and fulfilling, especially if you know that you are getting them something that they will put to use on a regular basis. The following lists are chock full of thoughtful gifts that every gardener will love and use on a regular basis. Even the thriftiest gardener doesn’t have everything, and these lists have lots of items that your gardening pals surely haven’t yet added to their toolkits. Read on for lots of great gardening gift ideas for the upcoming holiday season.
What is a good gift for a gardener?
Garden kneeler or kneeling pad – Gardening is hard on the knees. No matter what techniques you implore, or how many plant stands that they have in their arsenal, gardeners will often find themselves bent at the waist, or crouching down low to reach pesky weeds. A garden kneeler or kneeling pad can be a lifesaver bringing both comfort and safety in one simple package, and most gardeners don’t have one at all. A kneeling pad is small, useful, and cheap. A garden kneeler is a step up from a simple pad, offering storage compartments to keep garden tools a water bottle, and whatever else your gardening buddy might need right at hand as they bend down low to tend their garden beds.
Gardening clogs – Many good pairs of shoes have been ruined in the garden. Wearing your favorite shoes while trudging through wet soil is a bad idea, and cleaning them off when your duties are done is another chore that can easily be avoided with a decent pair of gardening clogs. While clogs may not be the most fashionable footwear choice, you can’t beat them when it comes to utility. Just hose them down when you are done in the garden, and leave them on the porch for the next time you need them.
Compost bin setup – a compost bin setup is a great gift for a gardener, especially one who is not composting at the moment. Composting is highly functional, and can save your gardening pal a lot of money over time. If commercial composting setups are a bit too pricey for your gift budget, consider making your own DIY bin setup for your friend to save a chunk of change.
Kitchen compost bucket – If your gardening buddy is already composting, chances are they are using an old coffee tin as their kitchen compost bucket, most likely hiding it under the sink or in a cabinet. Help them replace their unsightly container with a nice stainless steel container with a carbon filter to help reduce odors, like this one [https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00MNSZH1O/ref=as_li_ss_tl?creativeASIN=B00MNSZH1O&imprToken=–MhppoQHDuVtwgYFjTlfg&slotNum=45&ie=UTF8&linkCode=sl1&tag=getbusgar-everything-giftguide-20&linkId=52f9663ac96c08c7338964cb5a15a191].
Rainwater collector – Purchase a rainwater collection system or make one yourself. Pick out one that is as large or small as you prefer. There is no reason to use tap water for watering plants when you can just reuse rainwater, especially now that water has become a finite natural resource.
Sprinkler system – Watering plants is an essential part of gardening for any gardener who hasn’t invested a ton of money into drip irrigation setups or tons of self-watering containers. If your gardening friend wants to go on vacation but has to ask you to come by to water their plants, chances are, they could use a sprinkler system. Even a simple, stand-alone sprinkler can be a useful tool for watering large areas without having to lug around a watering can that they have to refill multiple times to get the job done.
Indoor grow light kit – If your gardening friend enjoys growing microgreens or starting their own seeds, an indoor growing setup might be the perfect gift for them. An indoor light setup could also be great for prolonging the growing season for some of their favorite plants, or even for growing plants indoors year round.
Plant stands – Plant stands are great gifts for multiple reasons. They get your plants up off the ground which allows them to be seen from greater distances, as well as saving some wear and tear on the gardeners knees. Plant stands can also be highly ornamental, adding a functional flair to your friend’s garden design
Self-watering container – Self-watering containers are great to have on hand to take some of the stress out of caring for plants. Even if your gardening friend only has a handful of self-watering containers in the garden, that counts for at least one less trip to the faucet and back with their watering can and a little less time needed to hydrate the plants in their beloved garden getaway.
Tiller – As long as your gardening friend doesn’t believe in no-till gardening, a tiller can make their job ten times easier when preparing their garden beds before each growing season. Most gardeners don’t have a tiller on hand, but it makes pulling up weeds and loosening the soil a quick and easy task. Aside from eliminating weeds, a nice tiller can also alleviate stress.
Potting station – Though not an essential gardening tool, a potting station is a convenient piece to have on hand. A simple desk-like structure that can be purchased or easily made yourself, a potting station is simply a place to pot and re-pot plants. A potting station keeps your gardening pal from having to bend up and down while lifting heavy pots filled with soil. It’s also a useful place to keep tools when potting and/or repotting multiple plants.
Find it on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/Best-Choice-Products-Outdoor-Potting/dp/B005S56JBQ/
Window boxes – There are few pots or growing containers that are more rewarding than window boxes. Having the luxury of being able to enjoy one’s gardening labor while gazing out of a window is surprisingly fulfilling. Window boxes are also a great way to maximize space in small garden setups.
Gardening tote – Gardening totes are cute, functional, and underused in the gardening world. Having all of your garden tools in one easily transportable place can really come in handy. However, there are several other items, such as the garden kneeler, or a gardener’s tool belt, that serve the same purpose, so if you are already planning on getting your gardener buddy one of these items, the tote would be a gift idea that you should skip over.
Stepping stones – Stepping stones are both ornamental and functional, and a row placed in the right location can really bring a garden area together while keeping visitors from stepping on seedlings and delicate plants that are located near walking areas. If you notice that your gardening pal doesn’t have any stepping stones in their garden walking paths, they could be the perfect gift idea this year.
Bird Attractors – A garden without wildlife is just not complete. Birds won’t just come to a garden area frequently unless there are resources there that invite them in. A birdbath, a few bird feeders, and a few nice birdhouses will bring birds to your friend’s garden in no time. Growing lots of flowering plants are the only other thing they need to do to send an open invitation to local birds to spend their days in an avian paradise.
Hummingbird feeders – Hummingbirds are lovely little creatures, and their presence is always a welcome sight to gardeners. Certain flowering plants will bring hummingbirds to the garden naturally, but nothing will keep them returning time and time again like sugar water from their very own hummingbird feeder.
Find online at Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/Perky-Pet-203CPBR-Pinchwaist-Hummingbird-Feeder/dp/B07896FNN7/
One of the best hummingbird feeders on the market is the Hummzinger Ultra Hummingbird Feeder. It has four feeding areas and holds 12 ounces of sugar water. The Hummzinger is an excellent gift for any gardener. It is easy to clean and smartly designed. The plastic cover has raised flower designs that redirect rain to fall off the sides of the feeder, keeping the top dry and keeping the water out of the storage compartment. The feeding holes are covered to keep wasps away and an ant moat is embedded to keep ants and other small creatures out of the enticing sugar water. There may be prettier hummingbird feeders on the market, but the Hummzinger is the smartest feeder you can find.
Little Burro wheelbarrow organizer– A wheelbarrow is a must have tool for most gardeners, even if their garden area is rather small (smaller sized wheelbarrows are available for smaller gardens). Many gardeners already have a wheelbarrow in their toolshed, but most do not have a wheelbarrow organizer as well.
The Little Burro wheelbarrow organizer stores tools, water bottles, personal items and more, plus it even has a water resistant cubby for your phone, or for snacks, or anything else you need to keep out of the rain and dirt.
Find on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/Original-Little-wheelbarrows-Wheelbarrow-included/dp/B06Y2JPKBY/
Gardening Gifts Part 2
Getting gifts for gardeners and plant lovers can be challenging, especially if you don’t know what they already have. The next time you are over at your gardening friend’s place, take note of the plant-related items that they have in their home and their outdoor garden area. To make the task a little less challenging, we have gathered together a list of very thoughtful and practical gift ideas to choose from that every gardener and plant enthusiast would appreciate greatly. Read on to find the perfect gift for your gardening friend.
What to get someone who loves plants?
Tabletop garden – A tabletop garden is a great idea for anyone who loves plants but doesn’t have enough outdoor space to dedicate to a legitimate garden area. Even someone who doesn’t love to garden but enjoys cooking might love to have a tabletop garden for growing herbs for use in the kitchen. It’s very easy to grow a plant indoors with a tabletop garden kit and having one or two tabletop setups for herbs sitting in the windowsill in the kitchen is a game changer.
Seed starter kit – Some beginning gardeners fear starting their plants from seed, usually because they have heard that starting from seed has a much lower success rate than purchasing seedlings or already established plants. However, starting from seed, though sometimes a bit more challenging, is not only cheaper, but is oftentimes the only way to get certain plants. A seed starter kit is a great gift idea for gardening enthusiasts. Most kits are quite affordable and easy to use.
Books about gardening – a great gift idea for plant lovers is a good book about plants or gardening. There are tons of books out there so if you know exactly what kind of gardening your pal is into the most, you can find a book specific to their needs, If you have no idea what kind of gardening they like the most, here’s a list of special recommendations that should be of interest to any plant enthusiast:
Step-By-Step Veg Patch by Lucy Hallsal https://www.amazon.com/RHS-Step-Step-Veg-Patch-ebook/dp/B07G2NHSQT
How to Garden When You’re New To Gardening by Royal Horticultural Society
100 Plants to Feed the Bees by Amy Andrychowicz
Veggie Garden Remix: New Plants to Shake Up Your Garden by Nikki Jabbour https://www.amazon.com/Niki-Jabbours-Veggie-Garden-Remix-ebook/dp/B06XPBD3J1/
Companion Gardening for the Kitchen Gardener by Allison Greer https://www.amazon.com/Companion-Planting-Kitchen-Gardener-Healthy/dp/1629141712/
How To Grow Stuff – by Alice Vincent https://www.amazon.com/How-Grow-Stuff-No-Stress-Gardening/dp/1785035592/
The Edible Garden – by Alys Fowler https://www.amazon.com/Edible-Garden-How-Have-Your/dp/1936740540/
Carrots Love Tomatoes by Loise Riotte https://www.amazon.com/Carrots-Love-Tomatoes-Companion-Successful/dp/1580170277/
Vertical Vegetables: Simple Projects that Deliver More Yield in Less Space by Amy Andrychowicz https://www.amazon.com/Vertical-Vegetables-Simple-Projects-Deliver/dp/0760357846/
The Bees in your Backyard by Joseph S. Wilson and Olivia J. Messinger Carril https://www.amazon.com/Bees-Your-Backyard-Guide-Americas/dp/0691160775/
Attracting Native Pollinators by The Xerces Society https://www.amazon.com/Attracting-Native-Pollinators-Protecting-Butterflies/dp/1603426957/
Attracting Beneficial Bugs to your Garden by Jessica Walliser https://www.amazon.com/Attracting-Beneficial-Bugs-Your-Garden/dp/1604693886/
Wicked Plants – by Amy Stewart https://www.amazon.com/Wicked-Plants-Lincolns-Botanical-Atrocities/dp/1565126831/
Medicinal Herbs: A Beginner’s Guide by Rosemary Gladstar https://www.amazon.com/Rosemary-Gladstars-Medicinal-Herbs-Beginners/dp/1612120059/
The Drunken Botanist by Amy Stewart https://www.amazon.com/Drunken-Botanist-Amy-Stewart/dp/1616200464/
Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew https://www.amazon.com/Square-Foot-Gardening-Garden-Space/dp/1579548563/
Rodale’s Basic Organic Gardening by Deborah L. Martin https://www.amazon.com/Rodales-Basic-Organic-Gardening-Beginners/dp/1609619838/
The Vegetable Gardener’s Bible by Edward C. Smith https://www.amazon.com/Vegetable-Gardeners-Bible-2nd-R-D/dp/160342475X/
The Complete Houseplant Survival Manual by Barbara Pleasant https://www.amazon.com/Complete-Houseplant-Survival-Manual-Essential/dp/1580175694/
Plants You Can’t Kill by Stacy Tornio https://www.amazon.com/Plants-Cant-Kill-Easy-Grow/dp/1510709630/
Live succulent garden – A live succulent garden wall planter is a great gift for anyone who loves plants and a fabulous decoration for any home. This succulent planter from Pottery Barn is a fantastic gift idea, though it is a little bit pricey. If it is over your budget, consider making one yourself for a fraction of the price.
Hen & chick growing kit – This cute little ceramic planter set from Red Envelope is a great gift for plant enthusiasts. The set comes with the easy to care for succulent sempervivum already growing inside, but the pots can hold any cacti, succulent, or other plant that requires minimal watering and drainage. A wonderfully artsy set, the hen & chick duo can be kept inside, as long as it is placed in a very sunny location. It can also live outdoors as well, just don’t tuck it too far away from the sunlight, as succulents need direct sun throughout the day.
Garden signs – Garden signs are cute and quirky, and depending on the type of person you are looking to find a gift for, garden signs can be the perfect choice. Make your own or purchase them online or at your local gardening center or nursery. Some sign designs are artsy, while others are more on the silly side. Find or make the right ones to fit the personality of the gardener that you are selecting a gift for.
Violet terrarium – If the gardening enthusiast that you are shopping for likes flowers and has a living room or dining room table, a violet terrarium is an excellent choice for a plant-centric gift. Violets prefer a stable environment that is slightly humid and a terrarium is the perfect way to provide such an environment for them. For just under $100, 1-800-FLOWERS has a glass and metal tabletop terrarium showcasing three beautiful violets which arrive in full bloom. The violets in this package are magenta, dark purple, and pink.
Vertical wall garden pockets – The gardening world is trending upwards and vertical gardening is on the rise. Help your gardening friend stay in line with the times with a vertical wall garden pocket setup. Easily tied up or hung, use one or several on a fence or wall to transform a mundane wooden fence into a living garden. Eco-friendly and durable material easily stretches to get more soil in each pocket than you can imagine, Aesthetically pleasing and surprisingly easy to maintain, these vertical wall garden pockets are an excellent gift idea. As an added bonus, the fabric helps lock in moisture, so you don’t need to water the plants in your living wall as often as the rest of your garden beds or container plants.
Find on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Meiwo-Hanging-Vertical-Planter-Decoration/dp/B072K51SBV/
What every gardener needs?
Flower pots – You can never have too many flower pots. But don’t just purchase plain orange ceramic pots. Instead, find some pots that have some style and flair. Pick out a couple of really pretty flower pots that match the personality of your friend to make your gift extra special.
Hanging baskets – Hanging baskets are great for plants that vine and cascade. If you buy established plants that are suited to hanging baskets, they usually come in boring plastic hanging baskets. Like with pots, you should look for hanging baskets that have some character. However, you don’t want them to be so pretty that they outshine the plants they hold. Find some hanging baskets that look well made and interesting, but allow the plants to be the star of the show.
Planter boxes – Wooden planter boxes are great gifts for any gardener, even if they already have some. They are great for stacking and racking, and they look great with just about any type of plant that you use them for.
Wheelbarrow – A wheelbarrow is a must have garden tool that many gardeners lack. Even small gardens can use a small wheelbarrow to help cart around potting soil, mulch, and other materials. There are power assist wheelbarrows available too, which take away some of the strain on a gardener’s back when lifting heavy loads.
Gardening tool belt – There’s nothing better than having your entire arsenal of tools right there on your waistline when performing gardening duties. Very few gardeners have such a helpful item at their disposal.
Watering can – Every gardener needs a watering can, and if they already have one, they might could use a nicer one, or a second one. Having multiple watering cans means less trips from the faucet/hose to the plants that need watering.
Find on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Homarden-Copper-Colored-Watering-Outdoor/dp/B07JCGR69N/
Gardening hat – Especially in warm climate areas, gardeners who spend a lot of time outdoors can benefit from a big floppy hat to help keep the sun’s rays from damaging their skin. Aside from sunscreen, a big floppy hat can help protect from harmful UV damage.
Plants – It may seem like an obvious choice, but plant lovers might like to receive plants as gifts too! Combo your plant gift up with a nice container and you have a gift that keeps on giving long after the plant has died or been rehomed.
Garden gift baskets can easily be hit or miss if the recipient is a thrifty gardener or if the basket maker doesn’t put some thought into the selection of the contents of the basket. The following item list is a near-perfect combination of gifts that will not fail to please. Even if the recipient has a few of the goodies that are in the basket, having an extra of any of the following items is not a bad thing at all.
What can I put in a garden gift basket?
Flower or vegetable seed packages – Every gardener needs seeds. Even if the pots and beds are full for the upcoming growing season, seed packages last for a long time before they expire. Having a large arsenal of seeds on hand is never a bad thing. Plus, you never know when you are going to acquire some new pots or decide to repurpose some random item into a creative new planter. At some point, your basket recipient is going to get around to using those seed packages.
Gardening gloves – One thing that gardeners can never have too much of is gardening gloves. When working in the garden, soil, water, overuse, and even cactus thorns are bound to put some gardening gloves through the ringer. Even the most durable pairs of gloves have to retire after a few growing seasons worth of use. Plus, there are so many different types of gardening gloves out there that are specific to certain tasks, so having a nice variety of types of gardening gloves is a luxury that no gardener is like to complain about.
Rose garden gloves are a great choice because of their durability and extra long arm protection. Garden Genie gloves by Crocoin are pretty awesome as well. Not only are the Garden Genie gloves puncture-resistant, durable, and breathable, they also come with attachment claws that turn your hands into digging machines. If these two suggestions are a bit over your basket budget, don’t worry, even regular, old-school gardening gloves are super handy and will eventually be put to use.
Gardening tools – Gardening tools are sometimes a tough purchase to make because you may not know what your gardening friend already has in their arsenal. Purchasing a full gardening tool set is more than likely going to result in some unneeded duplicates. Instead, choose one or two high-quality, multi-purpose tools that are at the top of their class.
The Cobrahead Original Weeder and Cultivator is one such tool that will most likely be the best gift in the basket (as long as your friend doesn’t already have one at home). This is a new tool, so most likely, your friend hasn’t bought one yet, but those who have picked one up, are super happy with their purchase. The Cobrahead weeder drives through tough dry soil with ease and makes digging up weeds, root and all, a quick, thorough, stress-free operation. The cobrahead is by far the best. Find on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/CobraHead-Original-Weeder-Cultivator-Garden/dp/B000JKONAO/
Many gardeners don’t have a small hand rake for getting behind bushes and into tight crowded areas to help with garden maintenance. Sometimes, a full-size rake is just too large for the task. That’s why the Black and Decker Steel Fan Rake is perfect for your gardening gift basket mini-tool selection. At just five inches wide, this small but durable hand rake is the perfect tool for the job in a surprising amount of situations. Slides under bushes and shrubs and cleans up swiftly. The Black and Decker Steel Fan Rake is the perfect size for cleaning up in between tightly spaced garden rows.
Another top tool that puts a complete garden tool set to shame is the best gardening knife that money can buy, the Japanese Hori Hori gardening knife. The six and a half inch stainless steel blade slices through soil like warm butter. The blade is beveled for easy digging, one side is serrated for cutting and sawing, while the other side is flat and sharp for slicing. Inch markers are engraved into the blade to help with planting seeds at the appropriate depth. You simply cannot find a better gardening knife on the market.
Tool sharpener – Even the best tools on the market will become dull after a few growing seasons worth of use. Instead of replacing your tools every couple of years, why not just sharpen them up and continue to enjoy them year after year? A tool sharpener is a thoughtful gift that will keep on giving year after year.
Cuttings from some of your favorite plants – Without breaking the bank, you can pass along your favorite plants from your own garden so that your friends can get to experience the same joy that you do from the plants that you have grown to love the most. Pass along cuttings from all of the plants in your herb garden. Simply take a few cuttings of your favorite plants and keep them in tiny containers so that your friend can re-pot them and watch them flourish in their own home garden.
Flower pouches – Hanging flower pouches are a new way to make vertical gardening super affordable and remarkably easy. These flower pouches are so easy to set up. Simply affix them to handrails, fences, walls, or overhangs, and marvel at how stunning the final product is. You won’t believe how cheaply you can decorate your outdoor areas with these pouches. Save even more money by making your own pouches, which is actually a breeze too, once you have the right materials on hand. Click here to learn how to make your own flower pouches at home!
Plant markers – Plant markers are super cute ways to add some personality to your garden area, and they are small enough to fit nicely into your garden gift basket. Instead of spending extra money on plant markers from your local nursery, add a personal touch to your gift basket and make your own at home!
Outdoor Boot Scraper – Let’s face it, gardening is a dirty job. There’s no reason your carpets have to suffer though. This outdoor boot scraper can be easily installed right outside your front door, making it easy to clean dirt and caked up mud off of your boots before walking inside. Save your friends from the same hassel by adding a boot scraper to your gardening gift basket. If you’re feeling extra friendly, you can also help them install it on their porch as well.
Everyday Gardening Journal – A gardening journal is a simple but useful addition to the gift basket. It is always a good idea to keep notes when gardening, so that you don’t lose track of frost dates, or forget what garden areas were dedicated to which plants last growing season so that you know how to properly rotate your crops. A journal is also a good place to draw out a map and plan where you are going to plant everything for the upcoming growing season. Design your flower garden, deciding what flowers to spotlight and what flowers to use for borders and edges. You can even write a poem inspired by your favorite plants and the time you spend relaxing amongst them.
Funky Veg Kit – The Funky Veg Kit by Plant Theater is a great way to branch out and grow some new vegetables in your garden that you would have never selected on your own, such as purple carrots, black bell peppers, or purple spinach. The kit comes with biodegradable pots, expandable peat discs that spread out into the containers when watered, seed sachets, plant markers and pro tips on how to get the most out of your vegetable garden each season.
Hummingbird Garden Kit – The hummingbird garden kit is a sure fire way to attract hummingbirds to your garden during the spring. Similar to the Funky Veg Kit above, the hummingbird kit comes with biodegradable pots and peat discs, as well as a large variety of plants that attract hummingbirds to your garden. Who doesn’t like tiny little birds that basically float in the air and drink sugar water? Hummingbirds are awesome! Aside from how incredibly cool they look, they are also one of the best pollinators that mother nature has to offer. Bringing more hummingbirds to your backyard is what gardening is all about.
With thoughtful gifts like these, it’s hard to think of a gardening gift basket that offers up anything less. If there’s still some room in your basket, consider adding some books about gardening, or a few garden magazines to keep in the bathroom or on the coffee table.
Want to learn more about gifts for gardeners?
Country Living covers Gardening Gift Ideas
HGTV covers No Fail Gifts for Gardeners
Morning Chores covers Gifts for Gardeners
Garden & Happy covers Best Gardening Books for Your Library