Goshen News, Goshen, IN

December 13, 2013

DIRT ON GARDENING: What’s on your gardening wish list this Christmas?

Goshen News

---- — It could be a garden tiller or a leaf blower, a new spade or an electric hedge shears. Or it could be something as simple as a new pair of garden gloves or pruning shears.

Gardening supplies run the gamut to outfit one for easier and simpler ways to tackle normal gardening chores. New products come on the market every year that make our lives more enjoyable and less stressful.

One such product that is available (and that I sold at the garden center) was gloves. Not just any glove, but “thorn-proof” gloves. I was not aware that these existed until they were brought to my attention by my supplier. Since we sold many roses and they needed the constant attention of pruning, moving and loading, they were a blessing to wear and remarkably efficient. They weren’t 100 percent fool-proof, but 99 percent was good. One could gently pick up a pile of rose cane trimmings with not so much as a poke.

Another product — albeit not very glamorous as a Christmas gift — is LIQUID FENCE. This product, discovered by my daughter Kim, was ordered directly from the producer as a “test” stocked item. It became so successful it was doubled and tripled the following years. Users were happily satisfied with its ability to ward off critters (rabbits and deer especially) with spray applications to their plants and shrubs. A heavy rain requires re-application, but its still well worth it. It is now available at local retail outlets.

You can garden in comfort with a new pair of garden clogs or suggest to your “gift givers” a new potting bench equipped with a potting port that will hold a sizable container to fill with your favorite potting mix.

Why not suggest a new tumbler composter to enhance your gardening soil or one of the many garden carts available — two wheelers with sizable wheels can maneuver easily throughout a garden. A chipper is also a handy tool to turn all those twigs and branches into compost or mulch.

For those little ones wanting to give their mommy/mother an inexpensive gift that won’t break the bank consider the following: flower scissors, a kneeling pad to save her knees, one of those new “coiling” hoses, garden art artifacts, a sundial, a garden glass globe, a birdbath or even something as simple as a rain gauge.

With water conservation a hot topic recently why not equip or enhance your efforts with a rain-barrel to catch run-off rain water as the perfect gift?

Of course bird-houses and bird-feeders are always a nice gift. Add to that a seed-mix that will beckon to the “wanted” species encouraging them to call this their home.

If you want to go all out then consider every gardener’s dream with a gift of an elaborate greenhouse that fits into a residential scene. There are many out there in about any price range. Construction of one of these might have to be delayed until next spring if they incorporate cement-work like outside pads or an inside walk. If not, then posts and/or tie-downs make it simple as long as frozen ground isn’t an inhibitor.

Happy hunting.

Master Gardner Tom Yoder is a Goshen News columnist.