If you are looking for a gift for an older gardener, you’ve come to the right place. I’ve created a list of some of the best gifts for older gardeners, including some that help with ergonomics, efficiency, and garden management.
Here is my list of the best gifts for older gardeners:
- Seed Packets
- Seed Trays
- Grow Lights
- Garden Kneeler
- Garden Bench
- Gardening Stool
- Raised Garden Bed
- Grip Gloves
- Ergonomic Pruning Shears
- Ergonomic Spray Hose Nozzle
- Rolling Tool Caddy
- Seed Spacer
- Rotating Compost Bin
- Harvest Basket
- Drip Irrigation
- Plant Markers
- Garden Journal
- Seed Saving Packets
- Books, Courses, and Seminars
In this article, we’ll go into more detail about each of these gifts, along with where to find them.
Let’s get going.
Best Gifts for Older Gardeners
I’ve grouped the gifts for older gardeners into the following categories:
- Seed Starting (tools to help get started with gardening indoors, before the season starts)
- Ergonomics (tools to make gardening comfortable for those in pain, or who lack flexibility)
- Efficiency (ways to save time and effort in the garden)
- Garden Management (ways to track what you have planted and record what has worked)
- Education (books and other materials to learn more about gardening)
Let’s start at the beginning, with seed starting.
Older gardeners are often more experienced gardeners. Many of them know how to start their garden vegetables from seed indoors, long before the season begins.
Here are a few items that are helpful in doing just that.
No matter how old a gardener gets, some seeds for next year’s garden will always be welcome. If you can find a rare variety that your gardener wants to grow, you can try to get your hands on those seeds.
If not, you can still make a gift of some popular seeds for vegetable or flower gardens, such as:
You can find seeds for vegetables and flowers at a local garden center or at an online retailer. Remember that some seeds last only a year, while others can last 5 years or more.
2. Seed Trays
Seed trays are helpful for any gardener who wants to start seeds inside in late winter or early spring instead of buying established plants.
A seed tray holds soil so seeds can be planted. Sometimes the seeds are all planted in one container together, and other times the tray has separate cells (one for each seed).
You can also find seed trays that hold several smaller individual containers. For instance, the combination of a seed tray and a 10-pack of pots will cost less than $10 after taxes at the Greenhouse Megastore.
You can also opt for a biodegradable seed tray if you want to go green. For example, this pair of 2 cell by 9 cell seed trays from Gardener’s Supply Company are made of wood fiber.
You can break off the cells and plant each one right into the soil, where the trays will eventually break down.
No matter which type you choose, a seed tray makes a great gift for experienced gardeners.
3. Grow Lights
Starting seeds indoors is a great way to extend the growing season, especially in a colder northern climate. However, the lack of sunlight in the late winter or early spring will present a problem.
The problem will be even worse if you are trying to grow in a basement or a room with few windows. However, you can use a grow light to help solve this problem in short order.
A grow light acts as a mini sun for young seedlings after they germinate and start to grow. Grow lights can also help to keep your plants warmer than the surrounding air if you don’t want to heat up the whole house.
If you want to save on electricity costs, you can find energy efficient grow lights, such as those with LED bulbs.
If you want, you can also get grow lights with a timer. That way, you won’t have to worry about forgetting to turn lights on and off every day.
A grow light is a great gift for an older gardener in a cold climate with a short growing season.
For example, this 2 foot grow light from Home Depot has 2 LED bulbs (19-Watt). You can link up as many as 8 of these lights together for a larger indoor growing setup!
Ergonomics is the science and art of using the right tools for every job to make work as comfortable as possible. Ergonomics is important for any profession or hobby.
It is even more important for older gardeners, since gardening is a very physical hobby that requires lots of work and bending.
Ergonomic tools for the garden help to make work more comfortable and reduce pain for those who already have injuries or pain from old age.
4. Garden Kneeler (Knee Saver)
If you are buying a gift for an older gardener with knee pain, a kneeler is a very thoughtful gift. A kneeler with good padding reduces pressure on the knees when working in the soil.
A large plot will require a gardener to kneel for hours on end. That means that a comfortable kneeler is a fine choice for any gardening enthusiast who needs some relief for the knees.
For instance, here is a padded kneeler and bench at Gardener’s Supply Company. You can also flip this kneeler over to turn it into a padded bench.
5. Garden Bench (Potting Bench)
A garden bench is a staging area where a gardener can repot plants, sort out seeds and seedlings, and prepare mixtures of soil and fertilizer for potted plants. It is also a good place to keep some commonly used small tools (trowels, knives, pruning shears).
A garden bench is convenient because it keeps the mess outside of the house. It is also easier than walking back and forth every time you want to switch to a different tool.
There are even potting benches with wheels that allow for a mobile option!
6. Gardening Stool
A garden stool can be as simple as an ordinary short wooden stool. However, you can also find a folding version that you can store easily, such as this one from Ace Hardware.
The best part about this model is that there is a pouch underneath the stool for holding any small tools you need for gardening.
You can even build a custom garden stool for an older gardener, depending on how high the seat should be for maximum comfort.
7. Raised Garden Bed
A raised garden bed is often made of wood. It is used to hold soil slightly above ground level, to allow for improved drainage and a separate growing area from the rest of the garden.
A raised bed is also helpful for the sake of ergonomics. For instance, instead of bending down, a gardener can sit on the edge of the raised bed (or on a gardening stool) and work the soil inside the bed.
8. Grip Gloves
Grip gardening gloves help you to get a better grip on things (such as when pulling out big weeds during the season, or other well-rooted plants at the end of the season!)
When you can get a better grip, you don’t have to hold on to things so tightly, and you won’t hurt your hands as much. This can be a real lifesaver for older gardeners who may have old injuries that give them hand or wrist trouble.
9. Ergonomic Pruning Shears
Pruning plants to keep them neat and avoid the spread of disease is just one small part of gardening, but it is an important one. In addition to pruning tomatoes or fruit trees, pruning shears can be used to keep overgrown decorative plants at bay.
This pair of pruning shears from Gardener’s Supply Company has an ergonomic grip, and it is designed to reduce hand fatigue when used for an extended period. These shears are small and easy to handle so that you can make precise cuts.
10. Ergonomic Spray Hose Nozzle
Holding your thumb over the end of a hose to get it to spray over a wider area gets tiring, even if you are not an older gardener.
A spray hose nozzle allows you to choose from multiple settings, such as a shower for watering plants, a mist for keeping soil damp for seedlings, and a jet for cleaning the inside of a greenhouse.
This spray hose nozzle from Gardener’s Supply Company has an ergonomic handle, making it easy to use for extended time periods. It only weighs about half a pound, so it doesn’t add much weight to the overall watering system.
A trellis is a welcome addition to any garden. A trellis provides a place for vining plants to climb, including tomatoes, cucumbers, and pole beans.
In addition, a trellis makes it easy to prune plants and harvest produce during the season – there is no need to stoop or bend for plants growing on the ground.
A trellis makes a great gift for any gardener, but an older gardener will appreciate the extra efficiency and convenience it provides. You can learn more about the best materials for a trellis in my article here.
12. Rolling Tool Caddy
A rolling tool caddy is really just a modified dolly (hand truck), meant for carrying tools around in the garden. The wheels make this caddy mobile and easy to move around, even when filled with tools.
Instead of walking back and forth across the garden all day, you can keep all of your most important tools in the caddy. This rolling tool caddy from Gardener’s Supply Company has a fabric tool organizer for small hand tools, a ring for keeping taller tools in place, and a bucket for miscellaneous items.
The items in the efficiency category make gardening work go a little faster and reduce the need for repetitive motions, which can also help with ergonomics.
13. Seed Spacer
A seed spacer (plant ruler) helps you to get the perfect spacing for your seeds every time. For example, this seed spacer from Gardener’s Supply Company makes seed spacing go faster.
This wooden seed spacer has the normal markings for inches, half inches, etc. The spacer is also marked with the proper spacing for popular vegetables such as spinach, lettuce, beans and garlic.
The seed spacer also has a hole at every inch to drop seeds through the ruler into the soil. A wooden dibbler is also included, which is used to push the seeds into the ground to the proper depth.
14. Rotating Compost Bin (Tumbler)
A rotating compost bin takes the work out of turning a compost pile. When you spin the bin, the compost inside is rotated and combined with the air and with any new material you add to the mix.
Many compost bins are raised on legs so that you won’t need to bend over to spin them. This also makes it easier to take the compost out when it is ready, since there is no need to bend over to scoop it up.
This rotating compost bin from Gardener’s Supply Company has two chambers (left and right). This allows you to fill one chamber while the other one decomposes.
15. Harvest Basket
A basket for harvesting vegetables from the garden is useful, but often overlooked. Older gardeners tend to have larger gardens (they tend to take up more space over time!), so there is more to harvest later in the season.
The sides of the baskets are made from cedar, which is lightweight but resists rotting when exposed to water or soil. The bottoms of the baskets are made from mesh (hardware cloth) so that you can rinse out dirt and bugs before bringing it inside.
The handles fold down, making it easy to put larger vegetables into the basket and then fold up the handle to carry the basket. You can use these baskets to hold anything your want – they are not limited to just harvesting from the garden.
16. Drip Irrigation
A drip irrigation system really helps to automate the garden in a big way. You can install soaker hoses instead of having to turn sprinklers on and off (or stand around holding a hose).
For instance, this drip irrigation system from Gardener’s Supply Company lets you create a customized watering system for your garden. With these soaker hoses, you can cut to the length you want and water up to 4 rows of 25 feet each.
A drip irrigation system saves time, but is also more efficient than a sprinkler, possibly using only 20% of the water that a sprinkler would.
Using a solar powered water pump for drip irrigation may also save on electricity costs in the long run.
Keeping track of things in the garden is one way to save time and energy for older gardeners. Marking plants and keeping track of what works and what doesn’t will help to make gardening easier in the future.
17. Plant Markers
Plant markers help you to map out what you want to plant in the garden before you sow a seed or transplant a seedling.
During the off-season, you can use plant markers to keep your seeds organized or to help with seed-saving for heirloom varieties.
These metal garden plant markers from Etsy are sturdy and will last longer than wooden ones. The seller has a huge variety of markers available for different plants, from artichoke to spearmint.
18. Garden Journal
A garden journal can be as simple as a notebook where you record what you planted and where you planted it, along with how the plants looked at various times during the season.
You can also use a garden journal to record plant varieties that you would like to try in the future. In addition, a garden journal can act as a planner so you can map out how you want to rotate your crops from year to year.
This garden journal from Etsy has a planting calendar and a section on companion planting, in addition to a sleeve in the back for storing notes on pieces of scrap paper (you could also put empty seed packets there so you can remember what you planted!).
19. Seed Saving Packets (Envelopes)
An older gardener might be in the habit of saving seeds, either to preserve an heirloom variety or to see what kind of plants will come from a hybrid variety.
Seed saving packets help to keep different species separate, and marking them helps to identify them the following spring when it is time to plant.
Some parts of gardening never change, but it is nice to keep up with the latest in weather patterns, new plant varieties, and interesting gadgets for the garden.
Books, courses, and seminars can help a gardener to keep up to date with all of this and more.
20. Books, Courses, and Seminars
A book can serve as a handy reference guide, since nobody can remember everything.
Older gardeners might take interest in a specialized topic that requires extra knowledge. For example:
- exotic plants
- pruning grape vines
- grafting fruit trees
- growing without soil (hydroponics, aquaponics, or aeroponics)
Another classic book that is published every year is the Old Farmer’s Almanac. This guide contains a calendar and information on astronomy, weather, and gardening, along with other interesting topics such as nature and amusement.
Now you have some inspiration for gift ideas for older gardeners. Hopefully one of these will make a good gift, or has given you some creativity to come up with other ideas yourself.
I hope you found this article helpful. If so, please share it with someone who can use the information.