Who wants to wrap a shovel or receive a rake as a gift? Gardening gifts can be fun, creative, functional and inexpensive, but they don't have to be obvious or awkward. And it doesn't matter if your gardener is an avid organic grower, a vegetable-plant fan, or an occasional container grower---gardening gifts vary as extensively as varieties of bedding plants.
Bonsai Trees are an exotic and interesting gift that can add some flair to almost any gardener's plant collection. Introduce your gardener to bonsai with a transitional plant, such as a jade plant or bamboo; both are easy to keep and will become a traditional houseplant for your gift recipient should he or she give up on the pruning needed for bonsai. According to Bonsai Gardener, a bonsai-for-beginners resource, another great species for bonsai beginners is a ficus plant.
Personalized Stepping Stones
Stepping-stone kits are available at most craft stores. Those kits often include concrete, molds and embellishments. Allow children and grandchildren to create their own garden stepping stones, personalized with their names and other touches such as pieces of pottery or marbles. Or allow the gift recipients to make their own stepping stones.
Like birds, butterflies need protection from the wind and rain, too. Butterfly houses, signified by slots that keep the birds out but provide shelter for butterflies, are a great garden gift, specifically in a flower garden. Butterfly boxes are attractive decorations, too.
There is an abundance of solar-powered garden accents, including LED lights, solar-powered water fountains, and solar gazing balls. For something different, consider giving a solar flower, typically found in the shape of daffodils, roses or tulips; those flower-shaped lights absorb the sun's rays all day and then shine at night. Other solar accents include color-changing garden stakes and a variety of LED lighting options.
For the avid gardener with a penchant for conservation, try a rain barrel as a gift. Rain barrels harvest rain water, which can then be used to water plants in the garden. Plastic rain barrels come in a variety of sizes and styles. Most have built-in faucets for attaching hoses, and some come with attachments for adding them to existing downspouts.