Gifts for Gardeners: Gift guide for your favourite green thumb

Unless they’re a complete newbie to gardening, the gardener in your life quite possibly has many of the tools and accessories they need already. So we’ve spent a bit of time (actually, a lot of time!) curating a Gifts for Gardeners list with a wide scope of ideas for the best gardening gifts. 

The list includes practical, beautiful, thoughtful, educational and delicious gifts for gardeners.

Like with everything we do, we’ve tried to showcase and support local and small businesses, makers, authors and products. We’ve looked out for the best prices from great little businesses throughout the country.

You’ll find a mix of neat things from some of our favourite brands, as well as things we spotted that just tickled our fancy.

Intended to delight both a new gardener and master gardeners alike. These gift ideas suit anyone who is garden-curious and inspired by the wonders of the wild world around us. We hope this gift list helps inspire you for whatever occasion you’re celebrating. 

Unless a complete newbie to gardening, the gardener in your life quite possibly has many of the tools and accessories they need already. So we’ve spent a bit of time (actually, a lot of time!) curating a Gifts for Gardeners list with a wide scope of ideas for the best gardening gifts. 

The list includes practical, beautiful, thoughtful, educational and delicious gifts for gardeners. Like with everything we do, we’ve tried to showcase and support local and small businesses, makers, authors and products. You’ll find a mix of neat things from some of our favourite brands, as well as things we spotted that just tickled our fancy.

Intended to delight both a new gardener and master gardeners alike. These gift ideas suit anyone who is garden-curious and inspired by the wonders of the wild world around us. We hope this gift list helps inspire you for whatever occasion you’re celebrating. 

Think we’re missing something? Shoot us an email – we’re always keen to hear from you. 

Buy plants from local nurseries as gifts for your loved ones. (These plants are at Flowers on Lawn in Hawke’s Bay.)

Gifts for the Practically-minded

First up are some seriously practical gift ideas that even the hardest-to-buy-for may, in fact, be delighted by. Getting a new tool or gardening accessory isn’t everyone’s idea of a great gift. But for some of us, it’s the ultimate show of love.

Here are some of the essential tools and hardest-working bits in our gardening kit…

— Gifts for the Sower, Grower & Propagator

Seed growing kits — Both practical and beautifully packaged. The perfect easy gift. All the fuss of seed sowing is taken care of with seeds, growing pellets and pots all ready for sowing, growing and transplanting. There are lots of fun combos available too. Take a look at Gibson & Green or FloraGrow

Paper pot maker — A clever and simple little tool to make paper seedling potters to grow seedlings in, then plant directly into the ground. We love our one from The Company Shed.

Unique flower seeds — There are so many gorgeous and unique seed options for sowing, growing and picking these days.  Puriri Lane and Emerden sell some of our favs. 

Heritage seeds — The Kōanga Institute is the home of New Zealand’s heritage seeds. They focus on bio-intensive gardening and producing nutrient dense food. Perfect for someone keen to grow their own produce.

A plant — Of course. New plants are always a wonderful gift for garden lovers. Something special like daphne, michelia, a fancy hybrid hellebore, maple or forest pansy tree. Edible trees make the perfect presents for house warmings or budding edible gardeners – citrus, feijoas or a fig tree are great options. Or a gift card for a local gardening store is the ultimate gift for someone establishing a new garden.

— Gifts for the Hands-in-the-Dirt Gardener

Sharp snips — These ARS (Always Really Sharp) secateurs come in a selection of fun colours and truly live up to their name. (The ARS leather holster is also on our wishlist). Felco is another brilliant secateur brand.

Niwashi weeder — We never stop hearing about how “maaaarrrrvelous” these traditional Japanese weeding tools are. Designed to get stubborn weeds out, available for both right and left handers from Growing Potential.

Garden Beetle Watering Can — Japanese-made designer watering cans that, aside from looking great, function beautifully too.

A pair of gloves — Any avid gardener will know, you can never have too many pairs of gardening gloves. For everyday use, try these Niwaki gardening gloves.

Knee-saving kneeling pad — Ok, now we’re getting a bit carried away with the ‘practical gift’ thing. But seriously, anyone who has weeded in-ground garden beds or planted out multiple seedlings will know how good a garden kneeler is. Even better when they look good, like this Niwaki one

Good-looking garden stakes — These ‘ball topped’ and ‘poppy pod’ steel stakes from Susie Ripley Gardening are gorgeous for staking tomatoes, dahlias and anything else that needs a bit of support.

A beautiful garden spade — A sharp, lightweight and hardworking spade is a gardener’s dream. Frances Nation stock the loveliest vibrant blue garden spade (made in Levin, New Zealand). Or this beautiful, practical Golden Spade by Niwaki.

A brilliant rake — We hear gardeners talk about the Fiskars garden rake all the time — it’s both decent-sized and lightweight.

A worm farm — For the really practically-minded. The Hungry Bin Worm Farm is a super popular New Zealand designed and made worm farm that can process up to 2kg of waste per day — resulting in fresh liquid fertiliser and worm castings for boosting growth and vitality in the garden, year round.

— Gifts to Accessorise a Gardener

A sweet hat — For sunny days in the garden, and all other cap-wearing occasions. Our Sage x Mollie Howard Pansy Cap is comfortable, cute and practical.

A bucket bag — Made from eco-friendly reusable plastic, these Scandanavian “bucket bags” by Hinza are designed with picnics and days at the beach in mind — but how great would they be for stashing roadside foraging and plant cuttings from friends. Or even plant pots when you whipped into a garden nursery and inevitably came out with more plants. No more dirt in the bottom of your car! (You could also try this similar option from Briscoes.)

Gumboots — There are plenty of good-looking and practical options for shoes to wear in the garden these days (or to the local farmers’ market and kids’ sports games). We love anything by Merry People in Australia. And another option is our favourite hemp garden clogs found at Garden Objects

Cosy socks —  A warm pair of socks for inside gumboots or popping on to enjoy an evening beverage outside. These Rubbish Socks by Untouched World are made from the left overs of their knitwear pieces, shredded down and given a new life as merino wool socks.

— Gardening education

Gardening Series by Sage — Our educational gardening series’ is a three month step-by-step series on what to do, sow and plant for the season ahead. Early bird registrations are currently open for the Autumn Gardening Seriessign up now (or purchase a gift voucher for a loved one).

Summer Gardening Guide — Super handy! A printable 40-page ebook with what to do and plant in your general and vegetable garden, orchard and flower garden.

— Books for gardeners

Practical Gardening Books —

Fungi of Aotearoa A Curious Forager’s Field Guide to finding, identifying and using mushrooms and other fungi in New Zealand. Written by Liv Sisson — a passionate forager and fungi enthusiast.

The Edible Backyard Still one of our favourite gardening books, ever. Anyone wanting to have a highly productive edible garden should be doing some research into permaculture design. Kath Irvine’s book: The Edible Backyard is an absolutely fantastic resource for any edible gardener. It’s a practical and comprehensive guide for growing organic fruit and vegetables all year round. Cannot recommend this book enough!

Companion planting guide — Companion Planting in New Zealand is a simple, easy-to-read book to help gardeners with their companion planting regime. Every tip in the book has worked for somebody. Why it worked may be a mystery, but the result of a healthy crop is the greatest reward for a gardener.

Field Guide to New Zealand’s Native Trees This book is the ultimate guide for anyone planting and looking after native trees in Aotearoa. It covers 210+ species, including all of our favourites like pōhutukawa, tītoki and kawakawa.

Beautiful gardening books —

Secret Gardens of Aotearoa This beautiful book explores twelve intriguing and unique New Zealand gardens captured, along with field notes & practical wisdom’. From a hidden suburban food forest to a flower farm, an organic vegetable patch and a large station garden, each is described in detail and shares insights from the gardeners who created them.

Dream Plants for the Natural Garden — Written by pioneering garden designers Henk Gerritsen and Piet Oudolf, this book describes their special choice of ideal plants, perennials, bulbs, grasses, ferns and small shrubs. More than 1,200 of them, with growing notes and advice alongside each.

Wild — If Piet Oudolf styled gardens appeal, then this book is a must. Covering more than 40 gardens around the world, Wild: The Naturalistic Garden is about gardens that are wild and natural by nature, giving focus to a more sustainable and planet-friendly approach to gardening.

Dreamscapes — By Claire Takacs — a renowned freelance photographer who specialises in gardens and landscapes. Dreamscapes: Inspiration and beauty in gardens near and far captures 70 gardens magnificent gardens around the world.

Robert Vennell’s books — You may have seen Robert’s beautiful first book The Meaning of Trees on bookshelves and coffee tables, and his equally delightful encore, Secrets of the Sea. Both books shine a light on the history, cultural significance and biology of Aotearoa’s magical and mysterious natural world. His latest book, The Forgotten Forest: In Search of the Lost Plants and Fungi of Aotearoa, is filled with beautiful historical artworks and illustrations and shares tales from history, science, and spirituality in search of these weird and wonderful species.

Thoughtful Gardening Books —

A Forager’s Life  Author Helen Lehndorf is a life-long forager and Manawatū-based writer. In A Forager’s Life, she seamlessly weaves memoir with foraging principles, practices and recipes. It’s an intimate story and a promise that much can be made of the world around us.

The Well-Gardened Mind — Author Sue Stuart-Smith is a psychiatrist and avid gardener. In this book she offers an inspiring and consoling work about the healing effects of gardening and its ability to decrease stress and foster mental well-being in our everyday lives. The garden as a refuge — we fully agree.

Braiding Sweetgrass: ‘Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants’ by botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer. In this book the author draws on her life as an indigenous scientist, a mother, and a woman in this beautiful book about the wisdom of the natural world. A great cosy read. 

Magazines —

A magazine subscription — The gift that keeps on giving. Some ideas — OrganicNZ, Homestyle, HOME and more

FOR MORE BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS: Take a look at our book features.

Books for gardeners - Gifts for Gardeners

Books such a great gift for the keen-to-learn gardener. Find book excerpts and recipes from some of our favourite books here.

Gifts for the Keen-to-Learn Gardener

— Gardening education

Gardening Series by Sage — Our educational gardening series’ is a three month step-by-step series on what to do, sow and plant for the season ahead. Delivered in weekly emails, and access to member-only articles on our website.

— Books for gardeners

Practical Gardening Books —

Fungi of Aotearoa A Curious Forager’s Field Guide to finding, identifying and using mushrooms and other fungi in New Zealand. Written by Liv Sisson — a passionate forager and fungi enthusiast.

The Edible Backyard Still one of our favourite gardening books, ever. Anyone wanting to have a highly productive edible garden should be doing some research into permaculture design. Kath Irvine’s book: The Edible Backyard is an absolutely fantastic resource for any edible gardener. It’s a practical and comprehensive guide for growing organic fruit and vegetables all year round. Cannot recommend this book enough!

Companion planting guide — Companion Planting in New Zealand is a simple, easy-to-read book to help gardeners with their companion planting regime. Every tip in the book has worked for somebody. Why it worked may be a mystery, but the result of a healthy crop is the greatest reward for a gardener.

Field Guide to New Zealand’s Native Trees This book is the ultimate guide for anyone planting and looking after native trees in Aotearoa. It covers 210+ species, including all of our favourites like pōhutukawa, tītoki and kawakawa.

Beautiful gardening books —

Secret Gardens of Aotearoa This beautiful book explores twelve intriguing and unique New Zealand gardens captured, along with field notes & practical wisdom’. From a hidden suburban food forest to a flower farm, an organic vegetable patch and a large station garden, each is described in detail and shares insights from the gardeners who created them.

Dream Plants for the Natural Garden — Written by pioneering garden designers Henk Gerritsen and Piet Oudolf, this book describes their special choice of ideal plants, perennials, bulbs, grasses, ferns and small shrubs. More than 1,200 of them, with growing notes and advice alongside each.

Wild — If Piet Oudolf styled gardens appeal, then this book is a must. Covering more than 40 gardens around the world, Wild: The Naturalistic Garden is about gardens that are wild and natural by nature, giving focus to a more sustainable and planet-friendly approach to gardening.

Dreamscapes — By Claire Takacs — a renowned freelance photographer who specialises in gardens and landscapes. Dreamscapes: Inspiration and beauty in gardens near and far captures 70 gardens magnificent gardens around the world.

Robert Vennell’s books — You may have seen Robert’s beautiful first book The Meaning of Trees on bookshelves and coffee tables, and his equally delightful encore, Secrets of the Sea. Both books shine a light on the history, cultural significance and biology of Aotearoa’s magical and mysterious natural world. His latest book, The Forgotten Forest: In Search of the Lost Plants and Fungi of Aotearoa, is filled with beautiful historical artworks and illustrations and shares tales from history, science, and spirituality in search of these weird and wonderful species.

Thoughtful Gardening Books —

A Forager’s Life  Author Helen Lehndorf is a life-long forager and Manawatū-based writer. In A Forager’s Life, she seamlessly weaves memoir with foraging principles, practices and recipes. It’s an intimate story and a promise that much can be made of the world around us.

The Well-Gardened Mind — Author Sue Stuart-Smith is a psychiatrist and avid gardener. In this book she offers an inspiring and consoling work about the healing effects of gardening and its ability to decrease stress and foster mental well-being in our everyday lives. The garden as a refuge — we fully agree.

Braiding Sweetgrass: ‘Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge and the Teachings of Plants’ by botanist, Robin Wall Kimmerer. In this book the author draws on her life as an indigenous scientist, a mother, and a woman in this beautiful book about the wisdom of the natural world. A great cosy read. 

Magazines —

A magazine subscription — The gift that keeps on giving. Some ideas — OrganicNZ, Homestyle, HOME and more

FOR MORE BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS: Take a look at our book features.

Gifts for the Gardening Foodie

Gifts for the Gardening Foodie

Delectable gifts for your clever foodie friends and whānau (family).

Microgreen seeds — Easy to grow, easy to eat. Grow them on the kitchen bench and take a snip for every meal. We’ve been using these seeds from Flora Grow, with great success. (Perhaps a good gift for urban gardeners with smaller gardens that lack space for a big outdoor vegetable garden too.)

Powered mushrooms — Adaptogenic mushrooms are quite the thing right now. Gaining popularity in cafes and homes for their health-promoting and therapeutic properties. Mother Made have a bunch of gorgeous products that can be added to your morning coffee, smoothie or meals.

Seasonal recipe subscription – Like The Modern Mess. We are a huge fan of Jen’s flexible and insanely delicious weekly recipes, as well as all her tips and cooking demonstrations to help along the way.

Picnic bag — We’re big fans of the Slow Life picnic bags. Practical partitioning, effective insulation and a timeless aesthetic. Perfect.

A wine delivery — We’re spoilt for choice on this side of the world with so many delicious wine brands to choose from. For a life-changing gift try social enterprise wine brand, 27seconds. They donate 100% (yes, you read that right) of their profits to help combat trafficking and modern day slavery. It helps that the wine is blimmen’ good too.

Organic artisan gin — Hastings Distillers is New Zealand’s first producer of certified organic artisan spirits and liqueurs. They make the most gorgeous gins, with botanicals that are either wild foraged or grown in local ‘gin gardens’. (We’re very partial to their recently released Barrel Aged Negroni too.) If you’re ever in Hastings, we would highly recommend a visit to their tasting room for a tipple too.

— Cookbooks for gardeners

Nostrana: Flavours from my Italian kitchen garden by Bri DiMattina — Inspired by her garden and her Italian roots, Nostrana is a nod to who Bri DiMattina is and where she’s from. Organised seasonally, with growing guides for each ingredient, this cookbook shares simple and delicious recipes with fresh vegetables and fruits you can easily grow and harvest yourself. We cannot rate this recipe book more highly.

[ Related reading: Flavours From My Italian Kitchen Garden: Bri DiMattina ]

Good Vibes: Eat well with feel-good flavours by Alby Hailes This cookbook is a celebration of food that makes you feel good. With veg-forward ingredients and big flavours, the recipes take cooking to the next level. [ Preview recipes here ]

Mint Cakery by Michelle Morfett — The absolute best book for anyone who loves to bake. This recipe book is dedicated to the most popular treats at Mint Cakery in Ellerslie, Auckland.

SALAD by the Two Raw Sisters — Every gardener should have this cookbook in their kitchen. Salads for every occasion, made with a variety of vegetables you can harvest from your own garden. We just love this one. [ Preview recipes here ]

FOR MORE BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS: Take a look at our book features.

Gifts for the Gardener & Homemaker 

Gift ideas for those who love gardening and home-making. For relaxing at home or entertaining outside.

A botanical print — Something botanical to adorn the walls of a home. We love Natalie McNally’s work, with 17 stunning botanical prints available.

Handmade ceramics — Handmade pieces of art, picked especially with the recipient in mind. Something earthy and rustic from Dahlia in Clay or Deborah Sweeney. Or the little flower-marked pieces from Rosa Ceramics.

A puzzle — How about a botanically inspired 1000 piece puzzle? For some of us, working (uninterrupted) on a jigsaw masterpiece is the ultimate luxury!

Produce-shaped candles – Because, why not! Nonna’s Grocers candles from Infinite Definite are super cute.

Outdoor lamp — We love lamp. This Fatboy Bolleke Spherical Lamp from Little & Fox hangs on a tree, umbrella or pergola outside. Or the Fermob Balad Garden Lamp from Jardin and the Eva Solo Outdoor Table Lamp from Bolt of Cloth are gorgeous options for outdoor entertaining.

Bird feeder — There is something so delightful having birds flit in and out of the garden to stock up on food and water. Bird feeders (and bird houses) are a great gift option for adults and kids alike. This silo feeder has got to be one of the best looking bird feeders out there! Or try something simple from Topflite like this Wild Bird Energy Cake Set or even these Christmas-themed wild bird seed bells.

An “everything” bag — The colourful Dariwallah bags from Blackbird Goods are made in India and come in 3 different sizes. Perfect for packing up swimming and beach gear, holiday road trip things or keeping bits tidy and together when you’re at home.

Garden sculpture — A statement piece to enjoy in the garden year-round. We love the Metal Metcalfe sisters’ vibrant bantam blooms.

[ Related reading: Making waste materials bloom ]

Pots and planters — For a lovely big range of outdoor pots and planters, check out Babylon Store and the Artedomus Pot Shop.

A homemade bouquet in a thrifted vintage pram. (Photo from our workshop with Flowers On Lawn)

‘Just a Little Something’ Gifts for Gardeners

Whether it’s a small token of appreciation, a stocking stuffer or a ‘just because’ gift, here are some small and simple gift ideas…

Moon calendar — This perpetual moon calendar can be used to find out the best days of each month to cultivate, feed, prune and sow.

Playing cards — These cottage garden playing cards from Garden Objects are illustrated with plants and flowers – both cute and fun!

A homegrown bouquet — Raid your own garden (or your neighbours’) and put together a posy of self-picked blooms and foliage. Perfection isn’t required, just a little creativity. (Books like Cultivated: The Elements of Floral Style, The Flower Hunter: Seasonal Flowers Inspired by Nature and Gathered from the Garden and Flowers for Friends, has some great inspiration for putting together a bouquet.)

A thoughtfully written card — Receiving a handwritten card is such a delight. We love Michael Steele of Day Dreamer’s gorgeous botanical cards.

[ Related reading: Day Dreamer | Botanically Inspired Illustrations ]

Something secondhand — Trawl secondhand shops and marketplace for preloved pots, antique trinkets, vases, bulbs, seeds and more. 

Plant cuttings and seedlings — The best gift from one gardener to another is something to plant in the garden from the gifter’s own garden. There is significance in sharing plants with one another. Pot up a new or secondhand pot with a plant cutting or seedling. (Don’t forget to label it!)

Seeds from your garden — Save your own seeds and spread the love by gifting them to fellow plant lovers. Pop them in an envelope (and perhaps a seed tin if you have multiple varieties) and label them neatly.

Gifts for Green-thumbed Kids

Don’t forget about the nature-loving children in our lives. We hope these gift ideas will encourage kids to get outside and foster wonder and awe for the wild world around them. 

Sun catcher sticker — Pop one of these super sweet holographic sun catcher stickers on a window and wait for the sun to shine through – filling the room with rainbows.

Children’s gardening tools — some child-sized hand tools are the perfect gift for a budding gardener.

Books — There are so many lovely children’s books around. It’s always a bonus if both kids and adults enjoy reading them. In An Artist’s Garden is a beautifully illustrated ‘seek & find’ book that takes you on a journey through some of the most celebrated artists’ gardens.

Butterfly seed bombs — These seed bombs can be tossed in the garden and will sprout easy-to-grow wildflowers and swan plants. The colourful blooms will attract butterflies and provide a habitat for pollinators for little ones to watch.

Bug hotel — A cute little bug home to help provide shelter and a cosy spot for insects to dwell, especially while they hibernate for winter. You can make your own or there are some premade ones here.

Flower clips — Sweet, brightly coloured flower clips to connect into chains and make patterns with. A cute wee activity to do with little ones. There are big and small ones to choose from.


A note – 

In this gift list Sage Journal recommends brands and products that we think are useful, good-quality and highly dependable. We will only ever recommend brands, makers and products that we like and trust.

From a small handful of the links in this article we may earn a very small commission if you click a link and buy the product. There is no extra cost to you, but it’s a great way to support the work that we do. 

If you have any questions, please reach out to us.

 


Independently curated by Emma Sage

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