This is part of the L.A. Times 2021 gift guide. See the full guide here. If you make a purchase off one of our links, the L.A. Times may be compensated.
Gardeners love their gadgets, especially if they make work easier, yet so many of us are also spendthrifts, reluctant to drop our coin on the tools and accessories we secretly crave. That’s where you come in, mighty gift giver, making those covetous garden wishes come true.
Braid & Wood plant hanger
Enjoy your hanging plants from every angle with this three-dimensional plant hanger from San Diego-based Braid & Wood. The hanger features frosted white stainless steel rings, a maple hardwood base and natural cotton cording and comes in three sizes and a choice of pot color. The hanger can also be hung from the wall. Plants not included.
$44-$88 | 👉 Purchase here
Opinel Garden Knife Trio
Opinel folding knives, with their handsome wood handles and sturdy-locking mechanisms, have long been a requirement for any serious European trekker as an easy-to-carry tool for cutting cheeses, salamis and crusty loaves of bread. Now, Opinel has added a curved pruning knife, a garden saw and a garden knife to its arsenal — foldable tools that gardeners can carry in their pockets for making quick trims on small branches, faded blooms or ripe fruit. Think Jean-Luc Picard wandering his vineyard in France, pruning knife in hand, thoughtfully sampling a few grapes as he ponders his next journey to the Final Frontier, and you’ve got the right vibe. The knives in the set come in lovely colors — apple green, purple and tangerine. You can also buy the knives separately, with plain wooden handles ($17 to $35).
$69 | 👉 Purchase here
‘Black in the Garden’ coloring book
This 20-page coloring book from Colah B. Tawkin, host of the podcast “Black in the Garden,” features botanical illustrations by Portland, Ore., artist Paula Champagne and is the perfect gift for budding botanists.
$10 | 👉 Purchase here
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Barebones Harvesting & Gathering Bag
If you have a forager or fruit grower on your list, this Barebones bag is a smart and thoughtful choice. It’s a beautifully made canvas bag with a removable waterproof liner, so anyone who wanders in backyards collecting potentially sappy, messy cones, flowers, branches and grasses will appreciate its versatility. Bonus: It looks super cool to wear, either on your back or strapped to your front to make it easy to load up apples or oranges or whatever you’re picking. The bottom opens easily so all that precious cargo can be quickly and easily removed.
$68 | 👉 Purchase here
Roger’s Gardens Deluxe Cocktail Garden Tray
So it had to happen .... our natural craving for specialty everything has led us to the latest rage in gardening — the cocktail garden, a small plot on one’s estate devoted to growing the herbs, fruits and vegetables that make cocktails our current joie de vivre. For those of us who can’t devote an entire plot to blood oranges, limes and celery, Roger’s Gardens nursery has come up with an excellent alternative: a handsome metal trug stuffed with herbs and edible flowers that can be transplanted into the ground or left to grow as a fragrant riot. This Corona del Mar nursery makes deliveries only in Orange County, so you may have to visit the store for your purchase, but it’ll be a fun trip, so consider it a little gift to yourself too. And remember, these plants grow best with regular trimmings, so drink heartily.
$70 | 👉 Purchase here
Xerces Society’s ‘100 Plants to Feed the Monarchs’
The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation is an international nonprofit focused on “protecting the life that sustains us,” such as the butterflies, bees and other insects that pollinate our food. The group’s new book is a handy guide for anyone who wants to create a pollinator-friendly garden. It’s full of easy-to-understand information about endangered monarch butterflies and lots of beautiful photographs of the types of plants you should use to help them thrive. Bonus: With a $57 purchase direct from the Xerces Society, you will be providing a donation to support its work. (If the price is too steep, it’s also available at the Theodore Payne Foundation store for $17. Buy it there and you’ll be supporting that organization’s work in preserving California native plants).
$57/$17 | 👉 Purchase here
Tortuga modular planters
Inspired by Bauhaus architecture, the Platform Vessel collection is designed by Farrah Sit, founder of Light + Ladder in Brooklyn, New York. The vessels are made of concrete and natural stone terrazzo and are available in various sizes, for indoor or outdoor use. Available online and in person at Potted in Atwater Village.
$45-$240 | 👉 Purchase here
Xerces Society’s Pollinator Habitat sign
Building a pollinator-friendly yard means breaking the old rules about landscaping. The flower beds tend to be (delightfully) unruly, and leaf litter stays on the ground, to provide shelter for insects and mulch for the soil. You can help your friends explain this to their less-than-woke neighbors by giving them this beautiful, full-color sign, which announces that this yard is not neglected, just hard at work helping insects, birds and other animals survive. The proceeds go to support the work of the Xerces Society.
$57 | 👉 Purchase here
Edible Gardens LA poppy flower mix
We’re used to the classic orange poppy in Southern California, but Edible Gardens LA has put together a mix of larger and more exotic varieties, such as Jimi’s Flag, Hungarian Blue Breadseed Poppy, Black Swan, Jimi’s Purple Haze, Lucille, Rose Peony Poppy, Bridal Silk and Great Scarlet Poppy, that will fill a garden with huge, colorful, bee-friendly blooms. Owner Lauri Kranz recommends preparing the ground in early winter but to wait to plant until it rains. One good technique is to scatter the seeds just as the rain starts and to gently rake a thin covering of soil over the top. If you can’t wait for rain, make sure the seeds are watered well into the soil to discourage birds from nibbling on your future flowers. The seeds are $6, plus shipping.
$6 | 👉 Purchase here
Roo “Joey” garden apron
More than one gardener has ruined a shirt by using it as a bag to hold bounty from the garden. Spokane, Wash.-based Roo has come up with a sturdy solution: colorful canvas aprons that hold a huge amount of whatever you want to harvest, with an easy release cord that allows you to gently dump the contents into a wheel barrel, sink or tub. The aprons come in dusty green and vivid purple, with a water-resistant lining and extra pockets. Best of all, they’re machine washable. Take that, juicy tomato smears!
$36 | 👉 Purchase here
Gardguard 100-foot expandable hose and nozzle
OK, a 100-foot garden hose sounds like a pretty boring gift, right? And how do you wrap such an awkward, heavy thing? Ah, that is exactly the point of this suggested gift. This Gardguard hose has a polyester exterior with a latex core, and the whole kit fits easily in a bag smaller and much lighter than a Christmas turkey. Yet when you attach the hose to a faucet and turn it on, it expands to an amazing 100 feet. I wouldn’t recommend dragging this hose through dirt and mud every day, but with its handy nozzle and hanging rack it’s perfect for watering plants on a patio or small garden space. And once you’re done watering, the hose shrinks back up to nearly nothing, making it very easy to store. No more tripping over hard-to-coil hoses.
$46 | 👉 Purchase here
Mademax solar fountain
This is a simple but very useful and satisfying gift for anyone with a bird bath. Birds love moving water, but setting up a traditional fountain takes $$$ and lots of work. This little solar fountain does a mighty job of moving water in a bird bath without electricity or hoses. Just sit it in bird bath, wait for the sun and watch the water start moving. One selling point is that it has thin stabilizers to keep it from moving to the edge of the bird bath and spewing water over the side. It comes with a nozzle and lots of fancy fountain options, but most of the reviews say it’s best to not use the nozzle at all, unless you want to fill the bird bath every hour. The best choice is to use the fountain without the nozzle, so the water just gently burbles, a motion birds prefer anyway, and enough movement to deter pesky mosquitos.
$18 | 👉 Purchase here
Magnetic plant pins
Even shade plants can show off their sunny side with enamel pins by Plant Good Vibes. Sunglasses, googly eyes, caterpillars and more are held in place by plant-safe magnets, says the company, which took root after sneaking pins onto friends’ plants and waiting for them to take notice. “Now it will be slightly less weird when you talk to your plants like they are your babies,” says the website. Pro tip: The magnet has two strengths — try the weak one first, which we found plenty strong to do the job.
$7 | 👉 Purchase here
L.A. Times plants insulated water bottle
This 22-ounce vacuum insulated water bottle keeps the cold stuff cold or the hot stuff hot for hours: Plus, you get to show off your love of all things plant (and your commitment to watch-dog journalism). Perfect companion for gardening, hiking and more. And yep, it’s built to fit standard cup holders.
$35 | 👉 Purchase here
L.A. Times plants tote bag
Tell the world you’re a devoted plant parent with this go-to tote. It’s made of 100% organic cotton, and it can take you — or your lucky giftee — from the farmers market to the grocery store to your favorite plant shop. (And do we need to tell you how many single-use plastic bags this can replace? Didn’t think so.)
$40 | 👉 Purchase here
L.A. Times plants baseball cap
Can’t you just see your dad in this — or anyone else who loves the outdoors? It’s the cap that goes from hiking to plant shopping to exploring L.A. In stone, 100% cotton, and it’s adjustable.
$30 | 👉 Purchase here
The plant lover in your life needs this limited-run zine made by our creative design team and featuring some of the best tips and advice from L.A. Times Plants. Plus, you’ll find memes, comics and features about whom you need to know (and follow) in the Los Angeles plant community.
$10 | 👉 Purchase here
Smart Pot double-sided balcony planter
Balcony gardens have a special set of challenges .... namely where to stack all the plants that residents want to grow and still have room for themselves. Enter this smart Smart Pot planter sold at Fig Earth Supply nursery in Mount Washington. It has two roomy pockets for planting any number of shallow-rooted herbs, greens or flowers, and it doesn’t require any fancy wires or hooks — all you need to do is sling it over the balcony bannister and voila! Instant (albeit tiny) garden.
$36 | 👉 Purchase here
Bloomscape potting tarp
Repot your houseplants without making a mess with this water-resistant canvas and nylon tarp from Bloomscape. Snaps at each corner help to create a canvas container to hold soil, roots and other plant materials. Available in two sizes.
$70-$90 | 👉 Purchase here
Modern Sprout smart standard grow frame
Cultivate a lush landscape indoors with the Smart Growframe (20.8 by 17 by 5.5 inches) from Modern Sprout. Simply mount, add plants and connect to the Modern Sprout app. Light is delivered courtesy of dimmable full-spectrum LEDs and can be controlled with the smart app.
$199 | 👉 Purchase here
Artisan Moss no water fern
Preserved moss and ferns from Artisan Moss may come in wooden boxes and ceramic pots but they don’t need any water or sun, which makes them the perfect gift for the black thumb in your life. They come in a variety of sizes with five types of plants available. And if someone happens to water it by accident as we did, don’t worry — it will survive.
$142 | 👉 Purchase here
Plant tags by Stacy Wong
Do you forget when you last watered your plants? Remind yourself with this stylish set of four marker tags by Manhattan Beach artist Stacy Wong. Each plant marker is hand-painted and made with birch wood and includes a removable chalkboard label. Using a piece of chalk, chalk marker or chalk pencil, you can write down when you last watered so you don’t forget. (Chalk not included). Or, use the markers to write funny quotes, the name of plants or just for decorating.
$36 | 👉 Purchase here
The Sill DIY succulent terrarium kit
Terrariums are back in fashion, and the Sill makes it easy to create your own with this DIY kit. It comes with everything you need to create a miniature desertscape, including six succulents (2.5 inches in diameter), bags of cactus mix, lava rocks and sand, and a glass bowl (10 inches in diameter).
$68 | 👉 Purchase here
Greenery Unlimited Brass soil probes
Struggle with judging soil moisture? These beautiful brass probes from Greenery Unlimited are designed to assess the moisture content and condition of your soil by bringing up a small sample. Available in two sizes: 10 inches by .25 inch and 13.5 inches by .25 inch. Anti-microbial brass prevents the transmission of pests and pathogens.
$26-$32 | 👉 Purchase here
Burgon & Ball slender trowel
This long, thin trowel designed by Sophie Conran for Burgon & Ball is perfect for repotting indoor houseplants and allows access to tight spaces that might be difficult for a standard-size trowel. The stainless steel trowel measures 13.78 by 1.96 inches and comes in an elegant gift box. The trowels feature 10-year warranties.
$28 | 👉 Purchase here
‘House Planted’ by Lisa Muñoz
Brooklyn-based interior plant designer Lisa Muñoz’s new book, “House Planted: Choosing, Growing, and Styling the Perfect Plants for your Space,” is the perfect gift for the plant lover who has been struggling with placement. Muñoz offers tips on how to pick the perfect plants to complementyour interiors, plants that will thrive indoors and creative ways to display plants at home.
$17 | 👉 Purchase here
Foliage Friday Face Mask
Identify yourself as a plant parent with a reusable face mask from Jacqueline and Arturo Chavez’s Foliage Fanatic line of plant wear. The mask features an adjustable nose wire, a pocket for a filter and elastic bands with size regulators. Made from 100% polyester microfiber.
$25 | 👉 Purchase here
Kelsey Melville snake planters
You can never have too many pots. Seattle artist Kelsey Melville‘s handmade snake planters are an argument for pot hoarding. The planters, each of which is unique, measure four inches in diameter and include a drainage hole.
$48 | 👉 Purchase here
Luna Reece Joshua ceramic planter
Artist Andrea Luna Reece’s colorful 6- by 5-inch Joshua planter is painted by hand in Costa Mesa, and inspired by Midcentury Modern design and the desert.
$60 | 👉 Purchase here
Wood and water propagation frames
Propagation frames by San Diego-based Modern Botanical Shop are hand-crafted from responsibly sourced materials and designed with glass vases large enough to allow your plant cuttings to grow for years. Seasonal cuttings include baby monstera, pothos, philodendrons and spider plants. Available online or in-person at the Juicy Leaf in Glassell Park.
$54, frame only | 👉 Purchase here
Blooming Tables side table
Display plants and succulents like works of art in Blooming Tables’ waterproof side table, which is lined with an acrylic tub, a twist-to-open drain valve and a removable glass top for easy watering. Available as a desk, coffee table and entryway table.
$229 and up | 👉 Purchase here
Treleaf Monstera trellis
Treleaf’s Monstrella trellis is a stylish yet functional solution to the unattractive moss poles and ad hoc chopsticks we all use to support our indoor plants. Inspired by the Monstera plant, the trellis is made by laser cutting a 1/4-inch-thick cherry finish wood sheet and is sealed with exterior-grade coating for protection against moisture. Available in two sizes.
$45-$60| 👉 Purchase here
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