In the Garden:
Pacific Northwest
December, 2012
Regional Report

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You can make wreaths from evergreen prunings. I tie the prunings together, add a pinecone or two, and give them as gifts or hang one on the front door to give the entrance a festive look.

Holiday -- or Any Day -- Gifts for a Gardener

The gardeners I know tend to be a generous lot, willingly sharing their time, their tools, and their knowledge. And, if I'm really lucky they also share their vegetables, cut flowers, and divisions of their favorite plants.

I try to give back throughout the year by sharing a weeding, pruning or harvesting task with them. But when a special occasion rolls around, I do my best to come up with a unique gift. I'm pretty frugal, so I shop year round, snapping up things on sale. August is a good time to find hand tools at great prices; seeds are usually half-price in October and if stored properly will germinate nicely the following spring. Just keep your eyes peeled and you're bound to come up with that perfect "something."

  • If your gardening friend has a cottage garden, a teacup and saucer with a floral design may appeal to her. Even if she doesn't use it for its intended purpose, it's sure to be a delightful reflection of her love of flowers. Or you might give her a coupon good for one afternoon of nursery-hopping with you in the springtime. On my bucket list is a tour of The Herb Farm in Woodinville, followed by a meal in their restaurant. Each week the chefs at the Herb Farm Restaurant (http://www.theherbfarm.com/dining/) plan new menus based on locally-grown and harvested ingredients that showcase the best the Pacific Northwest has to offer. It's a truly memorable experience.

  • If composting is his passion, an attractive scrap bucket with lid will be a hit. It can be stored under the kitchen sink and proudly taken out to the compost pile every few days. On a larger scale, a hay fork or a garden spade are both efficient tools for turning the compost heap. Paint it his favorite color and it will never be misplaced in the garden.

  • Gardeners are obsessed with the weather. A simple rain gauge or an elaborate high-low temperature recording thermometer can be a welcome gift.

  • Gardening gloves wear out so quickly that every gardener needs a large stockpile. Whether leather, rubber or cotton, with reinforced fingers or plain, you'll find a huge variety of sizes and colors in your local garden center.

  • Whimsical wind chimes, colorful pots -- hand decorated if you have the talent -- or small garden ornaments are fun to receive and fun to place in the garden.


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