From the Desk of Ed Hume: Gifts for the Gardener

December 20, 2010 at 12:00 AM Leave a comment

Are you having a problem deciding what to get someone on your Christmas gift list?  How about a gardening gift?  There are some really great indoor and outdoor Winter-flowering plants.  Or how about houseplants, garden tools, seeds, bulbs, pots, or garden accessories?  There are a wide variety of plants and garden items available in various sizes and prices, so it should be quite easy to find one that will fit most any Christmas budget.

I particularly like living gifts.  It’s my belief that they keep on giving because they grow both in sentimental value and in size and dollar value each year.  Plus, for anyone on a budget, most living gifts come in a wide range of sizes and prices.  The following are three of my favorite living gift ideas:

HEATHER: There are over a dozen varieties that flower during the Winter.  Recently I have found them in garden outlets in containers from as small as 4 inch pots to large sized plants in 2-gallon containers.

HELLEBORUS: This is a wonderful Winter-flowering perennial plant.  There are dozens of varieties that have single, semi-double, or fully double flowers.  They come in a wide range of colors.  In fact, there is a single white one called “Christmas Rose.”  It’s a bit difficult to find.  However, I think you’ll like most of the other varieties even better.

SASANQUA CAMELLIAS: This is a type of camellia that flowers during the Winter.  The leaves are a dark glossy green with flowers in shades of red, rose, pink, or white.

OTHERS: Herbs, perennials, fruit, flowering, and shade trees.  Also, how about the beautiful shrub or small tree maples.  Daphne, Winter-flowering Viburnum tinus, witch hazels, rhododendrons, azaleas, and magnolias are just a few other wonderful choices.

What about garden tools?  A new homeowner can often use something as simple as a trowel, shovel, rake, or pair of pruners.  If this were your choice, I’d suggest you spend a little extra and get a quality item that will last.

If you are on a really limited budget, seeds, a few bulbs, or a small houseplant might be an ideal Christmas gift idea.

If the person on your gift list lives in an apartment, retirement home, or assisted living facility, an ideal gift might be a houseplant, flowering plant, vase, or cut flowers.

Flowering potted plants like poinsettias, Christmas cactus, chrysanthemums, azaleas, African violets, cyclamen, and Rieger begonias are just a few of the choice seasonal indoor plants that make great Christmas or hostess gifts.

A visit to your local garden outlet, florist, or nursery/garden center will undoubtedly give you many other wonderful gift ideas.

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Clip of the week: Making a Holiday Swag Ed’s Podcasts: Living Gifts

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