PODCAST 009


Season 1 • Episode 9 - November 12, 2022

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This week on Garden Time we get into the holiday spirit with our large list of gifts for the gardener. If you are having trouble finding something for your local green thumb, we have plenty of ideas. We bring the ho, ho , ho and other great gift ideas to you next, on Garden Time.

As we have talked about in the past on the Garden Time TV show, buying a gift for the gardener can be a tough thing, especially if you are not a gardener yourself. So we thought we would put together a few ideas to help you this holiday season for this episode of the podcast from the Al’s Garden and Home in Sherwood. I have even added a few more ideas to the list that we didn’t cover in the podcast. Check out the sponsors page on the Garden Time website for locations of some of our favorite places to shop.

Wildlife/Bird Supplies

Most gardeners are also animal lovers. So you can help out those people by purchasing things to help them attract wildlife and other critters to their yard. Bird Houses, feeders and seed can be found at lots of stores and garden centers. The Backyard Bird Shop is one place where you can find the best selection. They can also help you pick the right bird food for your local birds so you don’t waste seed or money on your purchase. If you like all wildlife, they also have feeders for squirrels and other garden visitors. They even have bird charts to help you identify your local feathered visitors.

Binoculars

Great for the bird watcher or hiker in your life. You can get these at local outdoor stores like Dick’s Sporting Goods, REI or the Portland Audubon society store.

Seeds – Bulbs

Seeds and bulbs are great stocking stuffers for the gardener. You can find a great selection of seeds at your local garden centers any time of year. Plus most of them carry different varieties of bulbs too. For other types of bulbs and flowers you can order them directly from the growers. For tulips and daffodils you can check out Wooden Shoe Tulip Farm. For irises and daylilies you can go to Schreiner’s Gardens. Check out Adelman Peony Gardens for peonies and Swan Island Dahlias for summer dahlias.

You can also pick up the planting supplies for your gardener so they can start their seeds this coming spring to get a jump on the new gardening season. Pots, soil, lights and heat mats are just what they need to rejuvenate their green thumb in early spring. Also Season Starter plant protectors are a great gift since they will help protect those early plantings.



Tools

What gardener doesn’t need tools? Ryan shared a few that you should think of for your favorite gardener. Pruners are a must and there are great products to choose from Dramm and Felco. Felco’s are an industry favorite and you can get one to fit any need, plus you can find them at nearly all your local garden centers. The new Dramm ColorPoint Compact Pruner is new to the market, but is just as good. A good pruner, or any good tool, may cost a little more, but they will last longer and perform better than a cheaper knockoff. Dramm is also known for their great multicolored watering tools too. Check out their website for hoses, sprinklers and watering tools. Trowels are another must have. Look for a good solid one piece construction and not a folded metal blade that is easy to bend. We had a trowel from Corona, but if you are looking for a tool that will last a lifetime, check out Red Pig Tools. Seth hand makes pretty much all his tools. He can even help fit you with a long handled tool so your body isn’t as stressed and worn out from working in the garden. We also talked about the Hori Hori Weeding knife. This is a great tool in the garden, that can cut roots, dig holes, take out weeds and help you with just about any other garden chore. We also talked about pruning saws. Find a good one with nice cutting teeth so you get a clean cut. That will help your plants recover from the pruning sooner and it will be safer for you too. As for other tools, you can find a huge selection at your local independent garden center.

Garden Tool Organizer

You can find lots of different bags and benches to help you organize your garden tools. Home Depot has tool organizers that can be converted to hold tools, but some of the best organizers are at your local garden center.

Garden Art and Structures

Garden art is not just pink flamingos and garden gnomes. There are lots of different art pieces that you can add to your garden to create year-round interest. Some of it can even be functional. Consider garden gates, trellises and arbors. You can even look at adding structures like raised beds, tables and benches to enjoy your garden all during the growing season. We would recommend Garden Gallery Iron Works to find some of those more permanent structures for your garden. You can even add a fire pit or outdoor heater. You can get a wonderful all-weather baja-chimney from Little Baja. Al’s in Sherwood also has a new type of outdoor heater that uses wood pellets so you can burn cleaner, hotter and with less waste.

Weather Station

Are you or your gardening friends a weather watcher? What about a patio Weather station? You can find these at various places around the area, or on-line at the WeatherShop.com.

Flowers – Plants

What gardener can turn down a plant or flowers for that matter? Cut flowers will bring a smile to anyone and they can be picked up at most grocery stores now in addition to your local florist. Or if you want a gift they will enjoy for years, pick up a great plant at your local garden center. We looked at a couple from Al’s as an example. Judy talked about the Chief Joseph Lodgepole Pine. This one has green colored needles in the summer and then they turn a bright golden color for the colder winter. There was also a hellebore on the table called ‘Ice and Roses Merlot’ Hellebores are a great plant that blooms in the winter and brings some needed color to your garden. During the winter, indoor plants are also very popular. Ryan showed us an anthurium. This one has a wonderful waxy bloom that comes in various bright colors. It is just one of the great indoor plants you can find at your local garden center. You can also order a live plant to be shipped to you or your friends, but check with your local nursery to see if they offer the service for customers.

Holiday plants are also great gifts, and a couple of those are amaryllis and paperwhites. These are bulbs that people can force into bloom in their homes for the holidays or to brighten up those dark January days. You can find a good selection of those plants and the supplies to grow them at your garden center too!

Containers

A new pot or container for the deck or patio is a great gift. Containers are becoming the ‘in’ thing because they are perfect for any type of gardening. You can use them on any deck and they can be moved if you have a small area. Why not put a bag of Black Gold soil in the container along with a great book on container gardening. You can find a great selection of planters, containers and other pots at your local garden center or Terra Casa in Damascus, just east of Portland.



Gloves

Every gardener needs gloves and there are tons to choose from. You will find a wide selection at your local garden center. There is one set of gloves that we have found that people just love, Garden Like a Girl Weedies! These great gloves are designed for women (sorry guys) and are reinforced to handle those tough garden chores. They also offer a line of garden clothing that uses recycled materials and benefit various charities and causes. Check out their website for the details. Right now they are offering a Holiday Bundle Special for gloves and clothing! The Holiday Bundle is listed on the main page of their website. Check out the link here!

Books

The true gardener enjoys a good garden book and we are blessed to have many top publishers in the United States. There are serious garden books like the book we had on ‘Native and Ornamental Conifers in the Pacific Northwest’, and there are more light hearted books like ‘Floral Libations’ which is full of drink recipes based on floral ingredients. We even had a book, ‘Garden Time’, which we were kinda partial to based on our name, which was written for kids and was full of great colorful illustrations. This book was a favorite of the producer’s grandson, and we’re sure it will be a favorite for your young gardener. Be sure to check your local bookstore or garden center to see what they have in stock.

Gift Cards

This is a great gift for any gardener. Gift cards allow your friends to return to the garden center and pick out the gift they prefer. Most garden centers have gift cards. Some of the bigger garden centers also have member’s clubs where you can get special offers all-year long. Check out the special clubs at Al’s Garden and Home, Portland Nursery, Blooming Junction and Garland Nursery.

If you have kids and they want to get involved in gift giving, you may want to have them make some handmade gift cards. These can be redeemed for time spent weeding the garden next year, or even spending time in the garden with grandparents for an afternoon. The ‘gift’ can be anything you want to offer. There are templates for these types of gift cards on-line so it can be easy to make and easy to give.

Load of Compost – Mulch

Nothing says Merry Christmas like a load of compost. But really, what could be a better gift than a healthier garden and that is what you get with garden mulch! We have a great local source at Grimm’s Fuel. They can dump it in bulk or even apply it to your garden for you. They even carry firewood too!

Hammock

It may not be the right time to find one of these, but we can speak from experience. There is nothing like hanging out in your garden on a hammock during the summer! Check on-line or at your garden center to find one that fits in your garden.

Grill

If there is one thing we have learned while doing the Garden Time show, it’s that you can grill year-round in the Northwest. There are various grills that are available and some of your local garden centers do carry different brands. Once you get that grill/gift why not pick up some great meat (or a gift card) at Gartner’s Meats to use on that grill.



Fountain

The sound of water is very soothing and you can get a fountain for any size space. One place you can find just the right fountain is at Terra Casa. We mentioned them earlier for pottery, but they can convert almost any pot into a tremendous outdoor fountain too. They even have tabletop fountains to bring that soothing sound even closer. Other places where you can find a good selection are Hughes Water Gardens, Tsugawa’s or most of your local garden centers.

Outdoor Furniture

You have spent a lot of time planting and perfecting your garden, so now get some nice furniture so you can relax and enjoy it. Al’s Garden and Home has a great selection of quality outdoor furniture. You get what you pay for so make sure you go with quality when you buy. We purchased some very nice furniture many years ago and we are still using it over 20 years later, and it’s a lot more comfortable than those weak plastic chairs that others use.

Subscriptions - Memberships

There are too many good garden magazines to mention, but the top ones include Better Homes and Gardens, Horticulture Magazine, Sunset Magazine, and Fine Gardening. There are also specialty publications for collectors of various flowers so you may want to research specific magazines about roses, perennials or other specialty groups.

If you want to enjoy a more ‘hands-on’ subscription, why not a membership to one of the local gardens? Lan Su Chinese Garden, The Oregon Garden, The Portland Japanese Garden, and Leach Botanical Garden all offer memberships so you can support these gardens and give a wonderful gift at the same time.

Personal Comfort Items

This is a broad category and includes items like hand creams, potpourri, infused soaps and oils and spa trips. Of course you can find a lot of personal care items at your local garden center, but the spa trip may need a little more research on your part (but will be a welcome gift when spring clean-up rolls around).

Picture Frame/Journal

If you know a photographer who loves bringing their garden into their house a digital picture frame is a great gift. You can find different models starting at $40 and moving up to a couple hundred dollars, depending on the bells and whistles. These frames are a wonderful way to enjoy your garden long after the season has ended. A garden journal is also a good gift for the gardener that likes to write. A journal can let them capture the details of their garden, or the feelings they have when they are gardening. You can find both of these items at lots of local stores in the area.

Garden Gag Gifts

These can be the most fun especially if your gardener has a good sense of humor. A garden gnome, a chia pet, a cute garden plaque, or even a funny coffee cup can be a cute little reminder that you know about their gardening passion and you want to celebrate it.

We hope these ideas help you get off the ground with all your garden gift giving, but this is just a short list. For more ideas, stop by your local independent garden center.

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