This is the month of shopping for people who love plants. Fortunately, there are so many choices that no two gifts have to be alike: a pot of bulbs, a new tool, planters, live plants, grow lights, heaters and heat mats, shelving for indoors and out.
The amount spent can be from zero with a gift certificate for hours of digging and weeding to a fountain outside on the deck.
Gifts for gardeners includes items for every pocketbook and gifts from the humble to the sublime.
Washable garden gloves $5 — Ora Mae Piester, 918-683-4433, sells them for Muskogee Garden Club.
Or, become charter members of the new Oklahoma Botanical Garden, north of Tulsa. Send $35 for an individual or $50 for a family to Oklahoma Centennial Botanical Garden, 5323 W. 31st Street North, Tulsa 74127 and 728-2707.
On the higher end, a broad fork to loosen soil without using a rototiller, $160, or Johnny’s Selected Seeds, www.johnnyseeds.com and (877) 564-6697.
Seed collections: children’s garden, hummingbird and butterfly, old-fashioned fragrance, rainbow kitchen, herbs, unusual annuals, etc. Each collection of five varieties is in a decorative envelope, under $15, www.reneesgarden.com and (888) 880-7228.
Annie’s Annuals — gift certificates on sale — 15 percent off by Dec. 18 — www.anniesannuals.com and (888) 266-4370.
Gift certificates from Old House Gardens are sent on a photographed note — $40.
Owner Scott Kunst said, “Gift certificates give the gift of anticipation so gardeners can look ahead to spring in their imagination.”
Hard-to-find books such as the $10 “Spring Blooming Bulbs” or — T-shirts three for $25 and plastic bulb-planting baskets three for $13, www.oldhousegardens.com and (734) 995-1486.
Other books to please gardeners:
• “Best Garden Plants for Oklahoma” by Steve Owens, 2007, Lone Pine Publishing, $13 online, photographed beautifully with plant culture and best varieties listed.
• “Birds of Oklahoma Field Guide” by Stan Tekiela, published by Adventure Publications, $11 online.
Birds are classified by color first then shape or activity.
• “Butterflies of Oklahoma, Kansas and North Texas,” 2004, University of Oklahoma Press. Whether you are buying for a young gardener or a butterfly enthusiast, this is the reference they will want. Almost 300 pages of color photos and butterfly descriptions, habitat and food sources, $20 online.
• “Compact Guide to Oklahoma Birds,” 2007, Lone Pine Publishing. Chapters are by bird category such as water-foul, Grouse-like birds, doves and cuckoos, etc., www.lonepinepublishing.com, (800) 518-3541 — $14.
• “Birds of Oklahoma,” a CD-ROM of Oklahoma birds photographed by Bill Horn, $30, Bill Horn, 15217 S.E. 71, Choctaw 73020 or http://www.birdsofoklahoma.net/BirdCDform.htm
• “Oklahoma Gardeners Guide (Revised),” $13 online and “Oklahoma Perfect Lawn,” Cool Springs Press, $1 online, by Steve Dobbs.
Avant Gardener on sale — $18 for one-year, $50 for three years if ordered by Dec. 31. Monthly newsletters, eight pages, no photos, no advertising. Summarizes what’s new for plant lovers who want to stay up-to-date. Avant Gardener, Box 489, New York, N.Y. 10028.
Circle hoe for close weeding and cultivating. Imagine a sharpened circle attached to a hand-held or rake-length wood handle that was rated best value by the Wall Street Journal’s test of ergonomic tools. Three-handle lengths range in price from $10 to $30 and all are on sale on the company’s Web site, www.circlehoe.com and (800) 735-4815.
Fiskars and other companies make dozens of ergonomic tools: Rakes and pruners that are easy on the hands, shoulders and back, gardener’s knee pads, etc. Shop at www.arthritissupplies.com/ or www.fiskars.com and (800) 500-4849.
Gardeners Supply Co. has a link called “Gifts by Price” at www.gardeners.com or (888) 833-1412.
Root-Cut Weeder is seven inches long with a hooked-blade at one end and a fork at the other end, on sale, $7, great saws, trowels and other items of interest to gardeners, www.hidatool.com and (800) 443-5512.
Ups-A-Daisy Plant Inserts — Tall planters are an advantage for gardeners who want easier access without bending and kneeling. The circular discs come in three sizes and drop down into the planter to form a shelf for a planted pot. Sale — buy three get one free, www.ups-a-daisy.com and (815) 477-1388.
Wireless outdoor speakers from www.sharperimage.com could be a welcome summertime treat, as would a portable CD player for the days of endless weeding.
A gift card from Lowe’s has dozens of applications.
The 2008 seeds for a kitchen garden . . . lettuce, spinach, radishes, onions, etc. are available at Stringer Nursery in Tulsa and Conrad Farms in Bixby.
Make a soil-sifter for cleaning soil to sprinkle on the top of seeds. Use one-fourth and one-half inch hardware cloth nailed to wood frames that fit over a dishpan or larger plastic container.
For friends who propagate: a sack of vermiculite, rooting hormone, new spray bottles, insecticide for inside use, such as Safer Soap, or measuring spoons, small cups, and larger cups for measuring out chemicals. Make a gift basket out of several small items.
Sue Gray at Oklahoma State University Extension suggested, “A tree, a pallet of mulch delivered to their doorstep, a truckload of compost delivered and spread on the garden, a massage for after spreading the mulch and or compost. And, how about a collection of OSU Fact Sheets — print them off of the Web site and categorize them into a notebook for a gardener . . . it’s low cost and really thoughtful.”
Go directly to the fact sheets http://pods.dasnr.okstate.edu/docushare/dsweb/View/Collection-389.
Plant lovers appreciate any gardening gift. With so many choices, you can’t go wrong.