Great gifts for the gardener in your life

Published 12:00 am Friday, December 2, 2016

By Amy-Lynn Albertson

Rowan County Extension Director

Although the gardening season may be months away, you can keep gardening spirits up with great gifts.

Garden tools are always a welcome gift. Small hand garden tools, such as trowels or the cobrahead, would make good gifts. The CobraHead ( precision weeder and cultivator is the closest thing to a universal garden tool and highly rated by Carolina Gardener Magazine.

One of my favorite tools is a folding pruning saw. A pruning saw is for jobs too big for hand pruners, but not big enough for a chainsaw.

If the gardener in your life is into cut flowers, a pair of flower shears might be needed. More delicate than their pruning cousins, these shears tend to look like blunt-nose scissors. Their precise and durable cutting edges are ideal for snipping cut flowers from the garden. A crisp, clean cut allows flower stems to take up water.

Gardening gloves are another great gift. There is a glove for every garden task — everyday, flexible cotton, vinyl mud gloves, tough leather rose gloves, etc.

A pair of rubber boots or garden clogs is always useful in our wet springs with Piedmont red clay. One of the best gifts I’ve ever received is my stylish rubber boots.

Many gardeners enjoy curling up with a good book about gardening when the weather does not allow them outside. “Carolina’s Gardener Guide,” by Toby Bost and Jim West, is one of my favorite books. “Carolina’s Gardener Guide” is great for gardeners new to gardening in the South.

“Slow Gardening: A No-Stress Philosophy for All Senses and Seasons,” by Felder Rushing, is another book I love. I had the pleasure of hearing Rushing speak last year at the Davidson County Gardener’s Conference. “Slow Gardening” is more about doing what you enjoy and savoring what you do. This is a great book for anyone who has ever felt that gardening was too much pressure or has become stressful.

For the gardener who has everything, tickets to the 2017 Davidson County Gardener’s Conference are a must. The 6th Annual Conference will be Feb. 2, 2017 (snow date Feb. 9) at the Center Methodist Church of Welcome, 186 Center Church Road, Lexington, from 8:30 a.m. to 3p.m. The conference is sponsored by the Davidson County Extension Master Gardener Association, and is open to the public. Tickets are $35 and lunch is included.

This years’ keynote speakers are Allan Armitage with “Stories from the Garden” and Carol Reese “Sex in the Garden.” There are also five concurrent sessions to choose from. Registration forms are available at the Davidson County Extension Center in Lexington and on the web at . Please note that the deadline for registration is Jan 12, 2017.

For more information about gardening or other horticultural topics please contact the Rowan County Extension Center at 704-216-8970 or on the web at