In the Garden – November


Dear Santa,

As I sit and think about the garden presents you have gifted me over the years, I want to say how grateful I am for my bountiful garden and well-stocked garden shed. Rather than focus on what I want this year, I’d love to let you know how your generosity has manifested itself over the years.

First, I have been ever thankful for the (nearly) annual West Coast Seeds (WCS) Gardening Guide and gift certificate.

Now that the border is more permeable, I can once again thumb through the guide, dreaming of growing season 2022 before going to WCS’s Ladner retail store for seed starting equipment, pre-certified non-GMO untreated seeds and more! I have spent so many hours over the years devouring the annual guide, dreaming of what I will buy when I head to the shop. It always makes me happy.

Of course, I need to be sartorially prepared for gardening. So as for my favorite gardening gloves – Showa Atlas 370 in great colors – what can I say? As I told you before, these nylon/nitrile gloves are not as sustainable as leather or cloth ones, but they are an exceptionally supple three-season glove.

And for those days that I headed out without my gloves, a certificate for a manicure has been much appreciated. As a matter of fact, a good nail trim before donning gloves is a great idea for us gardeners who tend to wear holes in the finger tips of our gloves. It’s been ages since I found a manicure certificate under the tree ... just dropping a hint for this year. After all, if I had well-trimmed nails, I wouldn’t go through so many gardening gloves...

The gardening overalls (from Dovetail Workwear, to alternate with my Duluth Trading Company overalls) have been such a hit that I spend most of my waking hours in them. Every gardener should have a pair of work overalls no matter who the manufacturer is! I started my gardening life running around the farm as a child in overalls, and I will probably finish my life the same way. Thank you, Santa!

I also use the bootjack that you put under the tree for me. No more sitting to pull off muddy work boots by hand. By the way, this summer, I found a great pair of Hunter ‘play clogs’ on sale in Tsawwassen Mills that are just perfect for casual jaunts into the garden.

They slip on and off easily with no need for a bootjack, and they don’t have those Croc holes that let in dirt and water. You might consider gifting pairs of garden or play clogs to other gardeners. I’m sure that they will find them as valuable as I have.

As for tools, the very best present ever was a pair of Felco 2 secateurs (hand pruners)! However, the harvesting knife (aka 4" sickle) you gave me last year has been put to use cutting broccoli spears and other thick, tough stalks in both the vegetable and the ornamental garden.

I always keep this sickle by the mud room door for when I head out to the vegetable garden. It doesn’t pinch the stalks like pruning secateurs do, so I imagine that it inflicts less damage as well as being able to slice stems and stalks beyond the capacity of hand pruners.

In past years, you were generous in giving me not one but two tools to rout unwanted weeds from the lawn. (Yes, I know that dandelions are great for pollinators, but at least I wait until they have finished flowering.)

My first go-to is the Fiskar’s Deluxe Telescopic Stand-up Weeder because it allows me to get all those dandelions without bending. The smaller Radius ergonomic hand weeder is great too, for when I don’t mind getting down on my hands and knees to root out what a friend called ‘devil flowers.’ It’s better than the stand-up weeder for rocky soils anyway, so it gets a good workout in the rock garden.

Finally, on the more decorative, or even twee, side, the pot toes you got me from Kinsman Company spent the summer supporting a large potted tomato plant. The pair you got me – in case you forgot – look like tiny sleeping kittens curled up against the base of the pot, keeping the pot clear of the patio pavers.

Since I have a lot of container plantings each year, you can always give me more of these beautiful little pot feet shaped like chickens, hares and more. I could end up with a whole zoo supporting my pots. Wouldn’t that be fun?

But if you must put something new under this year’s tree, a friend raves about her hori hori garden knife, which is so adept at slicing through roots. Hint?


A very happy and appreciative gardener!


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