I am a terrible procrastinator when it comes to gift giving. Even if I know someone very well, it seems like my mind goes blank when it is time to do my holiday shopping. Every year, I am like a deer in the headlights as soon as the calendar begins to approach December. I am sure I am not alone.
If you suffer from a similar affliction, then the following list might be just what you need to get the wheels turning so that you can begin the annual acquisition of stocking stuffers. These are some simple ideas of items to suit just about any garden or budget. Some items are purely practical and others are slightly extravagant. Keep in mind that this time of year is supposed to be fun. And remind yourself that it isn’t the gift that’s the important part of this whole holiday fiasco anyway, right?
Copper tags with ties — $10 for 20; copper plant markers — $18 for 10. I LOVE these. I am always, always forgetting what I plant. The tags and markers are easy to use and last almost indefinitely. The copper is soft and thin enough that a pencil or ball point pen is all you need to make an impression on the label. Something similar was gifted to me by a friend a few years ago and I am forever grateful. I no longer need to rely on my faulty memory to keep track of the varieties of berries and trees that I have planted. They also look classy and add a little special bling to the garden.
All-weather automobile floor mats — from $45 to $130; entryway boot trays — from $5 to $50. Anyone who spends time in their garden will inevitably come inside the house with muddy shoes. Those same gardeners have been known to take an impromptu quick trip to the hardware store in those same muddy shoes. Do everyone in the house a favor and purchase that gardener a good boot tray and some sturdy floor mats. Less sweeping and vacuuming is a good gift for anyone.
You might actually hate gardening. For those of you who would rather not work out in the yard, what better way to say “I Love You” then to give the gardener in your life a little bit of your time? Recently my kids made me a coupon book. The book is filled with simple tasks that they are willing to do to help me out. These coupons are turned in with the agreement that there will be no whining and that there are no additional strings attached. Think about putting together a little booklet of meaningful coupons for your favorite gardener such as “1 Hour of Weeding,” “1 Free Back Massage,” “Mow the Lawn,” “Prune the Apple Tree,” etc.
So you say you aren’t any good at giving massages. That’s OK. Fortunately for you, there are plenty of professionals who can help you out in that department. There are also professional pedicurists and manicurists who would be happy to help whip your favorite gardener’s hands and feet back into shape. Give the gift of self-care to that person who spent all summer working with their back, hands and feet to grow you some amazing produce, give you a beautiful yard, or supplied you with endless bouquets of gorgeous blooms for your kitchen table. These are gifts that I would never give to myself, but that doesn’t make me any less willing to receive them!
Happy holidays and happy gardening!
A WSU Master Gardeners of Chelan County column appears weekly in The Wenatchee World. Eron Drew is one of four columnists featured.