}

November 21, 2011

10 Gift's for Savvy Gardeners


HEIDI KENNEY'S DESIGNS ON SPOONFLOWER.COM - CUTENESS SUPREME

Let's face it, most gardeners are pretty difficult to buy for. You can't buy them plants, since plant material is so personal. Tools are tough to choose, since for gardeners, they are really tools, so most have them. In an effort to find more thoughtful if not fun gifts for many of you who have friends who love plants, (or even for yourself!), here are some options from my secret list:


HEIDI KENNEY'S CUTE DESIGNS ON SPOONFLOWER.COM - INSTANT GIFTS


GIFT IDEA 1 
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

SPOONFLOWER.COM's CUSTOM PRINTED FABRIC 


Spoonflower.com allows you to upload old photos, doodles, antique postcards of gardens and they can print fabric for you. You can then make your own simple gifts, even simple gifts like fabric ribbon, or a top for a jar of tomatoes that you canned. If you are not comfortable with our talent, try one of the artists who already have pages there - I share with you Heidi Kenney, a self-taught artist who illustrated and wrote the Chronicle book EVERY DAY'S A HOLIDAY, and who sells her work at Kid Robot - she has an affordable fabric line available on Spoonflower. 

Don't stress over a gift, this approach makes it fun, and personal.....you just need to buy a yard ( prices range from $18.00 to $38.00 per yard, depending on the fabric type you choose:cotton, upholstery, canvas, silk), and then choose a backing material ( like mattress ticking for example) and, a fun filler ( down, Fir Needles, Beans) and you have an quick, inexpensive give for around $25.00 that is home made, and looks like a million.

While on the subject of Heidi Kenney, check out her blog, or her fab ETSY page for even more fun and inventive gift ideas from her show MY PAPER CRANE. You can even make your own mushroom dolls buy ordering this fabric below, and some cutting, sewing and stuffing......ta dah! Instant hero.



--------------------


GIFT No. 2 
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

VINTAGE SMITHSONIAN SPECIMEN JAR 
(FOR A TERRARIUM)


 As the legend goes, cases of these specimen jars were found by one of the savvy buyers at Antrhopolgie/Urban Outfitters/Terrain, once bound for the Smithsonian Institution. These vintage and authentic scientific specimen jars went untouched for years, crated in wood and wrapped in old, Danish newsprint, Recently found, these vessels are perfectly re purposed as terrariums for your home or office. At 11" x 5", they should hold some moss and a small rare plant, or two. (I might fill mine with pickled mice from the greenhouse to send a message).

THEY ARE A LITTLE SMOKEY AND STAINED, LIKE AN OLD MIRROR - CHARM AND CHARACTER


 ---------------------



Mushroom Terrariums, sculpted by Heidi Kenny (Check out her profile page here.). 


GIFT No.3 
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

SCULPTED PLUSH TERRARIUM (ALSO BY HEIDI KENNEY)



Felt and plush sculptures are just cool, and taking a riff off of the first gift idea, I just had to add these creations by Heidi too. They are available on her ETSY store, and are perfect for your daughter in college, for your desk where you write your blog, or even for a book case of gardening books, that just needs a hip update.

----------------------



GIFT No. 4 
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

RARE TARAXACUM SEED
 (OK.....FANCY DANDELION'S) 

NOT YOUR DADDY'S DANDELION - TARAXACUM RUBRIFOLIUM


Rrrrrright. Look, I suppose that these could be a joke gift, too, but there is always something for that gardener who had everything, and who grows everything, since, hey, you know that they are not growing these! I actually have a friend who collects these, and I think I am going to try some too. They do look fine in a pot, even grown as a bonsai, but maybe not in your lawn. Check out Plant World Seeds.com . There is even a pink flowered one.




TARAXACUM 'WHITE FLASH'  Scatter some of these in your neigbor's lawn! But really, a container of these would be fun!



-----------------------------




GIFT No. 5 

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++


THE WINGSCAPES PLANTCAM
A DIGITAL TIME-LAPSE CAMERA


I've wanted one of these for years. First, there was the bird cam, a small, digital camera that you could attach to your bird feeders ( made by the same manufacturer, Wingscapes) which allowed you to get amazing images of birds, close-up. But this plant cam offers a time-lapse feature, so you can capture the image of a peony slowly openings, or, for someone like me who works every day and gets home at night, it allows me to see perhaps a rare plant of bulb that may have bloomed during the day when the sun was out, but one that may only open for a day or two during the entire growing season. Come on, one can't time everything to open only on the weekends! I have a friend at MIT who like uses this camera for time-lapse photography in his office, and even on his commute home making neat little videos of the journey home on the train. For $79.99, it's a bargain for the effect it provides.

_____________



GIFT No. 6 
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

COPPER PLANT LABELS FROM WELLS & WINTER

There is nothing like at beautiful copper plant label, all aged and green, but they have to start out as shiny copper. England is still the only place to find these, and Wells & Winter is another source who will ship to USA. I like to have names lasered on, but you can use a paint marker, or scratch it in. The hanging ones make terrific gifts for those who have many shrubs and trees that are unusual, since plastic labels only last for a couple of years. I can't tell you how many times that I have lost the name of a shrub. I like to have a graphic artist paint a nice enameled number of each one, and then keep a master list in the house.
_______________________



GIFT No. 7 
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

MERRIL BERGENZ WATERPROOF BOOTS
OK, this might be a personal request Santa ( hint, hint), but it's nice to find a pair of boots that is both waterproof and insulated.  Plus these come in large sizes which makes the easy to slip on and off during the mud season, and for running out to the greenhouse on snow nights.  ( men's only). A nice option to mud boots that are traditionally rubber and cold. Orvis has them at $169.00.



GIFT No. 8 
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

The THOUGHTFUL GARDENER FLASK from KEW


This 500ml stainless steel flash holds hot soup and cold beverages for you while you are out on the back trails of the Alps, hiking the coast of Kawaii or searching for blue poppies in the Himalaya. Available at Kew Gardens on-line gift shop for £16.95.



GIFT No. 9 
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

GARDENER'S THERAPIES SOOTHING MUSCLE SOAK

Discover what gardeners in the UK already know, that the Scottish Fine Soap Company truly knows what we need, and what it should smell like. The manufacturer says that it has a scent that combines the top notes of cut stems and green leaves, combined with spicy notes of Cumin, Nutmeg and herbal notes of Armoise (?) -- ( whatever, to me it smells like a mown lawn on a hot, summer afternoon, some damp compost and weed - just what my muscles need after a long day of yard work).  We in the US can order directly their Scottish site, and while you are placing the order, check out their gardeners lotions, soaps and other supplies. £11.95 



GIFT No. 10 
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
GO PRO HD HERO TRAIL CAMERA and MOUNT
Going to see the wild flowers in Chile this winter? Or the veld in South Africa? Imagine what this baby will capture! $299. well spent.


Designed for extreme sport enthusiasts, imagine what plant geeks like us might do with an HD video camera mounted on our backback or helmet the next time we are out on the trails in the Alps. Sounds crazy? Look at this video and then think about how you could use this camera that mounts on your hiking helmet. This trail camera is number one on my list, and a must have for anyone who wants to really amp up their presentations if they are including film in them. And why not, since we now have video on our smart phones. For less than $300. this is a camera that might change how we all shoot plants.

  If you are an alpine plant lover, a plant explorer or even just a hiker who loves looking for plants, this is one device that will change your life, and you presentations if you are asked to speak at garden clubs and conferences like I am. This is a HD trail camera that rocks. Get it from GoPro.com

3 comments :

  1. Love it...the time-lapse camera is going on my "wish-list" for sure!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Dandelions with red wrinkled leaves? Or with pink flowers? I know my favorite on this list. And I know they'll grow like weeds :-)

    ReplyDelete
  3. For the copper markers, you can get a 1/8" metal alphabet stamp set for cheap at tool or hardware stores.

    ReplyDelete

Oh yes, do leave me a comment!