It’s that time of year again, and you are probably looking for some presents for the gardeners in your life — or maybe you want to treat yourself!
Either way, here are some local suggestions for gardening gifts that should be easy to obtain, even in our crazy times. As a bonus, you’ll be supporting local groups and individuals that benefit gardeners, plants and our beautiful desert.
- Pima County Master Gardeners Tucson Gardener’s Handbook, 5th edition. A must have guide for all Tucson gardeners! It can be found at a number of local locations.
- Stocking stuffers from Native Seeds/SEARCH: Soaps, lip balms and tasty treats await. The proceeds go to this local nonprofit which focuses on saving seeds in our area to ensure food availability for humans and habitat for animals, including pollinators.
- Support Tucson Audubon: At the Tucson Audubon Society’s Nature Shop, you can buy anything from T-shirts, to seeds, books and even fancy binoculars for the bird watchers in your life. Proceeds support the Society and their mission “to enjoy and protect birds through recreation, education, conservation, and restoration of the environment upon which we all depend.”
- Get gifts for everyone at Tohono Chul Park’s gift shop. You can find jewelry, books, calendars, tasty treats, and (if you don’t know what to get) gift certificates. You can also purchase gift memberships to the park. The park has been a fixture in Tucson since the mid-1960s and its mission is “To enrich people’s lives by connecting them with the wonders of nature, art, and culture in the Sonoran Desert region and inspiring wise stewardship of the natural world.”
- You can also get friends and loved ones a gift membership to the Tucson Botanical Gardens. The garden is a great source of gardening inspiration and has beautiful art events over the course of the year. They also have great classes for plant lovers.
- Books from local authors are always a great ideas! Here are some suggestions:
- "Southwest Fruit and Vegetable Gardening" by Jacqueline A. Soule. A helpful guide with frost tables, climate zones, tips on soil building and profiles of fruits, veggies and nuts that will help you get your food gardening off the ground.
- "Perennials for the Southwest" by Mary Irish. Helpful sections on design and care along with both native and non-native plants.
- "Southwest Medicinal Plants" by John Slattery. A great guide with lots of pictures to help you get to know some of the incredible plants native to our area, and their medicinal uses.
- "Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond Vol. 1: Guiding Principles" by Brad Lancaster. Considered the Bible of rainwater harvesting by many around the world.
- "Rainwater Harvesting for Drylands and Beyond Vol. 2: Water Harvesting Earthworks" by Brad Lancaster. A must-have for anyone looking to start passive rainwater harvesting.
- "In the Arms of Saguaros: Iconography of the Giant Cactus" by William Bird, Jr. A fun, detailed collection of well-researched historic photographs and illustrations featuring our beloved saguaros.
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Do you have any gardening topics you'd like to see covered in the Tucson Garden Guide? Email me at email@example.com with your suggestions and questions. Thanks for reading!