Please note that items are listed in U.S prices.
1. Botanicalls DIY Plant Twitter Kit – $99.00 How many of us really need this? I don’t really need this. I know when to water my plants. All I have to do is, you know, check them… With my eyes and hands. But the geek in me desperately wants this and that’s why I have listed it first even though I typically list the crazy, ridiculous items last. Place the leads in your plant’s pot and this little D.I.Y doohickey sends updates to a Twitter account on your plant’s status, reminding you when it needs water or has been given too much. The kit comes in pieces — you’ll have to put it together yourself, but for people like me who only passed high school computer science because I could build a working circuit (and those who passed because they could build a working circuit AND actually write and understand BASIC) that’s nearly the best part!
2. Plantable Seed Calendar – $24.95 Here’s a pretty little botanically inspired desk calendar that has a life beyond 2009. Each month is impregnated with wildflower seeds that can be planted when the year is out. I also like that the plants are listed since the word “wildflower” is so grossly overused — what’s wild in one region can be horribly invasive in another. Most plantable products become a bit of a guessing game, which could be fun, almost like a botanical surprise pack, if not for the unfortunate surprise that can come once the seeds have sprouted.
3. Metal Word Herb Markers – $22.50 These herbal plant markers are simple, understated and very tastefully done. FINALLY!
4. The Organic Gardener’s Handbook of Natural Insect and Disease Control – $14.93 I always try to add at least one book to the list and this year I wanted to include something that gardeners of any skill and experience level can use and appreciate. This book is it. I’ve recommended this book countless times over the years because it is the one book on my own shelf that I have turned to most. Pests and diseases are the great leveler — all gardeners, regardless of skill level succumb to them now and again. I consider this book the bible, the go-to book whenever I need to identify an unknown pest or problem or get a good idea of the environmental impact of a particular spray or remedy. And at nearly 600 pages, this book doesn’t miss much.
5. Grobal Self-watering Pot – $12.95 Now here’s something that the forgetful gardener can really use. They remind me of the 80s era self-watering planters made by Tupperware, only a heck of a lot nicer. Finally, a pot that is aesthetically pleasing, reasonably priced, and actually useful! Definitely go for the larger pot, the baby version is too small for most houseplants.
6. USB Greenhouse – $19.99 Here’s a gift for gardeners doing the 9-5 in front of a computer in a dark and lifeless office cubicle. It looks like the small size could be a barrier to growing anything substantial although it might work for seedlings, or perhaps some leafy greens and microgreens to supplement the boxed lunch. I can’t vouch for the environmental impact of this product since it is running on electricity, but perhaps it makes up for that just a little bit by increasing mental health.
7. Flasher Planter – $110 Another item on the pricey side but worth mentioning if someone out there can afford it. I recently suggested this item when Canadian Gardening magazine asked me what I’d like to receive for the Holidays this year. It was a bit of wishful thinking, really, since there is no hope in hell that this will be coming my way anytime soon but still, hilarious isn’t it? And completely appealing to my great love for dioramas.