House & Home

34 Genius Gifts for Gardeners They’ll Really Dig—Handpicked by a Gardener (Updated 2021)

Holiday gift guide: gifts for the backyard farmer

We all know a gardener or backyard farmer in our lives.

They’re the ones who arrange for chicken sitters the way other people arrange for dog sitters. They avoid taking vacations in summer when their gardens are going off. They give away jam made from fruit they’ve grown, and foist massive zucchinis on anyone who will take them.

So it goes without saying that a backyard farmer—whether it’s a friend, a neighbor, or a coworker—is someone good to know!

Say thank you for all those zucchinis they keep giving you (and get on their radar when they have a glut of juicy heirloom tomatoes to share next summer) by sending one of these thoughtful gifts they’ll love.

And if you’re stumped on what to stuff their Christmas stockings with, check out my budget gift guide for 23 Perfect Stocking Stuffers for Gardeners Under $25.

Disclosure: All products on this page are independently selected. If you buy from one of my links, I may earn a commission.

The best gifts for gardeners, backyard farmers, and urban homesteaders

The No-Waste Vegetable Cookbok

1. The No-Waste Vegetable Cookbook: I’m starting off with a recommendation for a book that every vegetable gardener should have. It’s the perfect gift for anyone who grows their own food and wants to find out what to do with it all.

These are the kinds of easy and approachable recipes you won’t find anywhere else, with delicious tips and inventive uses for all the odds and ends of plants you never knew you could eat. Think: radish tops, carrot greens, pea shoots, squash shoots, pepper leaves, and fava bean leaves.

By knowing exactly what to use and how to prepare the plants you already grow, you can essentially double your harvest every season without adding more work, more plants, or a bigger garden. $25

Dwarf Meyer lemon tree in a container

2. Dwarf Meyer Lemon Tree: I’m always a fan of edible gifts (because I know they’ll actually get used!) and this is an edible gift that keeps on giving.

How excited would you be if a loved one gave you a lemon tree?! I know I’d be over the moon! And this improved dwarf variety, if kept indoors in a container, will stay around 3 feet tall but still produce loads of delicious lemons. It’s a cheerful and unexpected houseplant that fits in with any decor. $89

Ceramic pot made to look like a woven basket

3. Woven Basket Ceramic Pot: Speaking of houseplants, I like to make my houseplant gifts a little more special by repotting them into beautiful ceramics before I present them.

This pot is made to look like a woven basket but is actually ceramic for longer-lasting appeal. I’d pair this with a monstera, prayer plant, or majestic palm for a tropical feel. $48

Terracotta hanging planter with bohemian rainbow

4. Hanging Terracotta Pot: This is another one of my favorites for elevating an otherwise simple houseplant.

For any of your upcoming holiday gifts (or hostess, housewarming, or get well gifts), repot a cascading plant into this bohemian terracotta planter. I’m thinking string of pearls, Peperomia ‘Hope,’ or Peperomia ‘Ruby,’ or you can keep it super low-maintenance by adding an air plant (like Tillandsia Xerographica). Using my link will give you a sweet $20 discount off your first order of $80 or more! $32

Dog-shaped planters made from coconut coir

5. Coconut Fiber Dog Planter: Okay, I can’t resist a little kitsch. But these adorable planters light me up every time I see them, and I think they’re a really fun gift for any quirky plant (and dog) loving friend. I’m partial to the pug, but you can also choose from a dachshund, schnauzer, Westie, English bulldog, French bulldog, or poodle.

The planter is made of coconut coir and is just the right size for a houseplant, succulent, or potted herb. Package it with your favorite plant and get ready for all the grins. $60

Ceramic rainbow watering can

6. Rainbow Watering Can: How can you not smile when you reach for this each time you water your plants?

It’s the little things that make us happy, and I think this watering can would make a great gift as part of a larger package that includes some seeds, plant markers, and simple terracotta pots. Using my link will give you a sweet $20 discount off your first order of $80 or more! $45

Deluxe seed saver kit in galvanized steel bin

7. Galvanized Seed Saver Kit: This deluxe kit contains everything you need to save and store a tidy collection of seeds.

You get a sturdy galvanized steel bin with five compartments, glassine envelopes to keep seeds dry, and cardstock dividers to organize things at a glance. There’s also a mini seed saver kit for new or younger gardeners. $70

Gardening tool storage caddy made of galvanized steel

8. Galvanized Garden Tool Storage Caddy: Once in a while I buy something intended as a gift, but end up keeping it for myself. This is one of those things!

If you’re the type to misplace your tools in the garden, or always wish you had a few things handy when you’re out watering or harvesting, this storage caddy helps you keep the most useful items close by. I have a couple of these hanging on my raised beds throughout the garden. $35

Walnut-handled scissors for pruning, trimming, and other gardening tasks

9. Walnut Handle Scissors: Scissors are my #1 gardening tool above pruners and clippers. Why? Because they’re small, easy to clean, and easy to tote around.

I have several that I use for harvesting, pruning, cutting twine, opening bags, and other everyday tasks. Some of them are pretty plain (office-type scissors) but this walnut-handled pair makes an ordinary tool look and feel special. $25

Brass-handled scissors

10. Brass Scissors: Continuing with my scissor obsession, this substantial brass-handled pair slices through stems like nobody’s business.

It’s the perfect gift for a budding florist or a stylish gardener who appreciates high-quality, sculptural tools that last. Using my link will give you a sweet $20 discount off your first order of $80 or more! $42

Limited-edition Niwaki rattan-handled secateurs (pruning shears)

11. Rattan Handle Secateurs: Sometimes, a tool serves as both function and fashion. And these limited-edition secateurs (pruning shears) have an artful, heirloom quality about them.

Niwaki tools are hand-forged in Japan and truly set the standard for quality and value. These pruners are on the high end, but they’ll outlast any gardener with proper care. $198

Niwaki herb snips

12. Herb Snips: As you can tell, I love all things Niwaki, and these herb snips are no different.

Snips seem like single-purpose tools, but you’d be surprised at how helpful they are in the garden. I use mine for small trimming tasks where a pair of pruners might be too unwieldy. Yes, they’re excellent for snipping herbs, but they also work amazing for flowers, vines, and other thin, delicate stems. $36

Niwaki tool maintenance kit in a bag

13. Tool Maintenance Kit: Anyone who’s serious about their tools can use a high-quality tool maintenance kit like this one. (It doesn’t hurt that it’s also packaged beautifully.)

This simple kit contains everything you need to keep gardening tools sharp and clean: a scouring block, sharpening stone, camellia oil, and handy oil dispenser. $64

Leather gardening gloves with palm leaf print

14. Leather Trim Gloves: Can you ever have too many gloves? If you’re like me and tend to leave them scattered around the yard, probably not.

Hard-wearing, high-performance leather gloves are essential for tougher tasks in the garden, and the stylish print is just a bonus. Trust me: every gardener could use another pair. $44

Floral-print arm-saver gardening gloves

15. Arm Saver Gloves: If you really want to cover all your bases, a gift that includes both a short pair and arm-length pair of gardening gloves will always be met with enthusiasm.

Long gloves like these help protect against thorns, bug bites, and sun exposure, and the pretty botanical illustration makes mundane chores feel more fun. $38

Epicurean over-the-sink cutting board with cutout

16. Over-the-Sink Cutting Board: Epicurean makes some of my favorite cutting boards (I own several) and I’m especially excited for this one.

The innovative design combines an over-the-sink board (a great space-saver in small kitchens) with a semi-circular cutout you can push all your veggie scraps through (into a compost bin or bowl below). $68

Knives with floral-print blades

17. Floral-Print Knife Set: Every vegetable gardener needs a good knife or two in their kitchen arsenal, and this set (which includes a chef’s knife, serrated knife, and paring knife) ensures there’s never a dull moment during meal prep.

I love how whimsical the floral and fruit prints are—they definitely deserve to be displayed on a magnetic knife strip, and not just tucked away in a drawer. $34

Flower pot bread baking kit

18. Flower Pot Bread Baking Kit: How’s this for adding some rustic charm and whimsy to a weekend brunch?

The kit includes four terra cotta pots, plus all the dry ingredients to make a batch of bread and lavender butter. There’s enough to make four bread pots, but you can save the recipe and reuse pots for future batches. $38

Masontops fermentation kit

19. Mason Jar Fermentation Kit: I’ve tried a few airlock systems for my fermenting projects over the years, but these are far and away the best for how easy they make it, even for beginners.

The kit comes with a wooden tamper, glass weights, and airlock tops to turn any mason jar into a fermentation crock for kimchi, sauerkraut, and other ferments. $50

Acacia wood egg tray

20. Acacia Egg Tray: If you know someone who raises backyard chickens, this is a practical gift that also scores serious style points. (No more ugly egg cartons!)

Made of real acacia wood (and not some cheap pine that’s simply stained to look like it), this egg tray displays homegrown eggs on the counter in the loveliest way. Using my link will give you a sweet $20 discount off your first order of $80 or more! $39

Meadowland simple syrup set

21. Set of 4 Simple Syrups: Simple syrups are some of the most versatile ingredients in the kitchen. I use them in cocktails, sparkling water, coffee, tea, lemonade, and desserts.

This set is from a local Bend, Oregon, maker that I adore. (I try different flavors every year and always buy more as gifts.) The artwork on the bottles is divine, and the bundle includes their latest holiday concoctions: Winter Forest, Gingerbread, Sugar Plum, and Candy Cane. So delicious. $26

The Flower-Infused Cocktail book by Alyson Brown

22. The Flower-Infused Cocktail: This book is from another Bend, Oregon, maker and a fellow boss babe in my local networking group. When I saw the cover, I knew I had to get a copy for myself!

Alyson’s beautiful book features swoon-worthy cocktails that are almost too pretty to drink. Flowers and herbs are the stars here, and these recipes make me want to devote an entire garden bed just to edible flowers for my future happy hours.

You’ll recognize a lot of your favorites: borage, bee balm, lavender, fennel, cosmos, carnations, and more, along with unusual selections like black locust, osmanthus, hawthorn, forsythia, toothache plants, and Oregon grape flowers. Each recipe features a bit of history, botanical facts, and tasting notes on the flower used. (If you don’t have a bar setup yet, I personally have and love this Parisian shaker and copper cocktail mixing set.) $30

Mocktail Party book by Kerry Benson and Diana Licalzi

23. Mocktail Party: Being alcohol-free doesn’t mean you have to miss out on the fun with your drinks. This clever book features a variety of plant-based mocktails that are no less fancy than their bar versions.

Think: Pal-no-ma, Aperol-less spritz, blood orange mock-a-rita, and watermelon mock-jito. I love that these are low-sugar recipes striving to be healthier options too. $15

Coppery metal half-wreath base for crafting and decor

24. Swag Wreath Base: Got a crafty friend who also loves to garden? Then they’ll love this half-wreath base for all their foraged art creations.

The coppery metal frame looks just as good on its own as it does with stems, branches, pinecones, feathers, or string lights hung on it. Keep it up year-round and change it out with the seasons! (There’s also a circular wreath base—in the same cool copper pattern—if you prefer a more traditional look.) $38

Cyanotype printing kit

25. Cyanotype Printing Kit: Cyanotype is a lost art, and on occasion when I get back into it, I always remember how much I loved it doing it as a kid (and even as an adult).

This ancient photographic process uses the sun to produce brilliant blue prints. It’s a fun way to create original art with leaves, flowers, and stems from the garden, and since it’s a manual, tactile process, every print comes out a little different each time. $68

Merry People natural rubber boots in yellow

26. Natural Rubber Boots: As a gardener, I’ve tried all kinds of muck boots and rain boots.

These ones, by far, are my favorite. (I have the Alpine Green pair, but am really hankering for another color.) The boots are made of natural rubber and are so comfortable to wear not only around the yard, but out on the town, too.

Now that temps are dropping, I’ve found them to be surprisingly warm down to 35°F (so far… we’re not that cold yet). And that’s saying a lot, since my toes always freeze in regular rain boots. Best of all? They’re unisex. $130

Leather and straw market backpack tote

27. Leather Handle Market Backpack: I have a thing for handwoven market totes, and I especially love this version because the double leather straps are designed to go over your shoulders like a backpack.

It makes it so much more convenient to ride your bike to the farmers’ market or carry a large haul of vegetables, hands-free, while wrangling a toddler. $78

Gardener's handy helper survival kit

28. Gardener’s Survival Kit: How often do you find yourself deep in the garden, only to realize you ran out of twine or can’t find those clips you need to hold up your vines?

This handy kit comes with all the little things every gardener can use more of: plant markers, jute twine, plant clips, foam ties, and garden wire. $40

Mod Hod garden basket

29. Mod Hod Gardening Basket: Here’s an updated take on the traditional garden hod, which adds foldable feet and handles to a more streamlined and durable design.

But the feature that seals the deal for me is how you can stick this in your sink to wash off vegetables, or rinse it with a hose before you bring in your harvest. If you buy several of these Mod Hods, they even stack to save space while storing your produce. $35

Gardener's Supply Company garden cart

30. Garden Cart: This is a pretty spendy item, but for that special someone who’s a passionate green thumb, it’s the best gift you can possibly get them.

How do I know this? Because I have one and can’t live without it. (And yes, I have that fabulous purple color.)

The medium cart is plenty big for the average garden, and I find it much more useful than a wheelbarrow for everyday chores like hauling plants, tools, soil amendments, and piles of leaves and sticks for my compost. (It’s even great for carrying a kid or two to hang out in the garden with me.)

In my humble opinion, every garden needs one. $299

Organic heirloom seed bank

31. Organic Heirloom Seed Bank: What do you get someone who’s interested in gardening but doesn’t know where to start? A whole bunch of seeds to get them on the right track!

This collection includes 24 packets of popular heirloom varieties like Beefsteak tomatoes, Scarlet Nantes carrots, Bloomsdale spinach, Lacinato kale, Blue Lake pole beans, and Cherry Belle radishes.

There’s a little bit of everything, and Botanical Interests has the best seed packets on the market with how much planting and growing information they include. $54

Salsa garden seed starter kit with pots, potting soil discs, plant markers, and seeds

32. Salsa Garden Starter Kit: When it comes to gardening how-to gifts (especially for beginners), I like to make it as fun and easy as possible to succeed.

This salsa garden starter kit takes a somewhat fickle process (seed starting) and makes it nearly foolproof with an all-in-one box set that includes compostable peat pots, organic potting soil discs, plant markers, organic seeds for growing your own salsa ingredients, and a growing guide.

What I especially like about this kit is that it comes from a family farm in Oregon, so the varieties they chose for the kit (early cherry tomatoes, early jalapeños, and slow-bolt cilantro) will work for any climate. $30

Rustic barnwood planter microgreens kit

33. Barnwood Planter Microgreens Kit: As you can guess, I love a good DIY kit. This one is tailored specifically to people who want to try their hand at indoor gardening—specifically, microgreens.

The starter kit includes a reclaimed barnwood-style planter, coconut coir growing medium, drip tray, humidity dome, mister, and purple radish microgreen seeds. There’s enough for multiple plantings and you can add on other microgreen seeds to grow in the same planter. I personally like their purple shiso (perilla), black oil sunflower, and spicy salad mix, but if you’re new to microgreens, this colorful seed assortment (featuring eight different varieties of microgreen seeds) is a great option. $38

Oyster mushroom log growing kit

34. Oyster Mushroom Log Kit: Oyster mushrooms are the easiest and most forgiving type of mushroom to grow, and this home growing kit makes it that much easier to get started.

Included is an aspen or poplar log that’s already inoculated with oyster mushroom spores—all you have to do is soak the log and wait for your first harvest. A single log can provide up to three years’ worth of mushroom harvests! (There’s a shiitake mushroom log option too.) $30

About Author

I'm a plant lover, passionate road-tripper, and cookbook author whose expert advice and bestselling books have been featured in TIME, Outside, HGTV, and Food & Wine. The No-Waste Vegetable Cookbook is my latest book. Garden Betty is where I write about modern homesteading, farm-to-table cooking, and outdoor adventuring—all that encompass a life well-lived outdoors. After all, the secret to a good life is... Read more »


  • Robert
    November 6, 2021 at 7:34 pm

    Linda, you have become so pathetic. Little actual content, just a shill. You should be embarrassed.

    • Linda Ly
      November 8, 2021 at 7:00 pm

      That’s funny. I put out plenty of free, high-quality content on my blog every week. You can bookmark this page, which lists all of my recent posts (newest first):

      You can subscribe to my email list, where I share helpful resources (exclusive to my list) and links to seasonally appropriate posts:

      You can also use the search function (the magnifying glass at the top) to help you locate relevant content on the blog. With over 600 posts and more that are added/updated constantly, you might be able to find the help you need. And I’m always happy to take suggestions from readers for future topics they want to learn about.

  • Sally Christiansen
    November 24, 2019 at 3:54 pm

    Great list! Congratulations on the new book!

    • Linda from Garden Betty
      November 25, 2019 at 12:09 am

      Thank you Sally!


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