The best gifts reflect your personal knowledge of the recipient, so take a moment to think about what would please this person the most.
There are always great gardening books from which to choose. Be sure that if the book is to convey general gardening know-how, that it pertains to the region to be gardened. The more your gardener knows, the less specific these books can be, but if they are a beginner, the wrong book can almost be worse than no book at all.
For our region, look for books with titles including the words “Texas” or at least “Southwest gardening.” My all-time favorite is “Doug Welsh's Texas Garden Almanac.” This book includes a month-by-month to-do list.
A great book for the artistic gardener is “Gifts from the Garden: 100 Gorgeous Homegrown Presents” by Debora Robertson. If you are crafty, maybe you should get the book for yourself and make something for your gardener friend.
Available from local bookstores or online, journals can help with organization, which is a key good gardening practice.
If your gardener likes to take many photos of the garden, consider a photograph album instead of a journal. If you find one that is meant to hold 8½-by-11-inch paper with hoops, you can easily make this album into a photo and written journal.
Buy a package of three-hole typing paper. Put some of this paper in the journal between the album’s photo pages. It’s the best of both worlds.
“Rebecca's Garden, Vol. 1: Basic Gardening ” videos can be found on basic gardening to specialty interests such as rose gardening. Penelope Hobhouse also has a video called “The Art and Practice of Gardening.” Hobhouse is British, so she’s a long way from Central Texas.
There are a plethora of gardening tools and aids. Consider an ergonomically designed tool that would make gardening easier. Fiskars has a number of these available locally. Speaking from experience, most gardeners need a new or better pruner by the time Christmas rolls around.
There are two basic things a gardener looks for in pruners — ease of use and sharpness. If the pruner incorporates engineering that helps boost the power of your hand when you make a cut, this is an added bonus.
Other great garden tools include pop-up bags in which to put garden waste (sometimes known as kangaroo bags), long-handled hoes and weeders, kneeling pads and garden carts. A good pair of gloves or a gardening hat are also great ideas for gifts.
Decorative items make a great addition to the garden if you know the gardener’s taste. Don’t buy a gnome for a gardener who has a sophisticated garden style. Just take a moment to look over the landscape the next time you are at the gardener’s house to see what they like. For instance, a Southwestern- style clay pot would be good in a garden decorated with Southwest accents that includes cacti and other desert plants.
Does your gardener have a garden hobby within gardening itself? An example would be a gardener who has taken an interest in fairy gardening. You could buy them a few accessories.
Several of our local nurseries carry wonderful accessory pieces for this, such as little houses, small tools, tiny animals and garden furniture. If you buy these, make sure they are all in the same scale.
Imagine how pleased your friend will be when they open a gift that took such thoughtfulness from you.