Good news this week if you’re wondering what to buy for the gardener in your life this Christmas– there are lots of lovely things available locally that would be not just useful but very welcome, and with stores opening up you can choose to visit or shop online.
I’m evangelical about the benefits of wool and wouldn’t be without it in the garden – it regulates temperature as well as being naturally waterproof and keeps you warmer than any synthetic fabric can. A chunky Aran sweater in a practical colour, less restrictive than a coat, is ideal for gardening, and Galway’s own Standun have been supplying them from their Spiddal store since 1946. You’ll find wool socks, hats and scarves too – essential parts of any gardener’s outdoor kit in store and at standun.com
When you just have time for a little light pottering (without togging out in all the combat gear! ) a handy apron you can grab and throw on is a must-have. Galway based Cotton On can personalise them with a name or message, so they don’t get mixed up with the family chef’s aprons! Check out cottonon.ie
Even with gloves on, gardener’s hands take a battering, and I get through industrial amounts of handcream in the winter months. Steph Kilkenny’s Jojoba Hand Cream contains jojoba and olive seed oils to protect and moisturise, and is made in small batches in the West of Ireland with only the purest natural ingredients. For faces exposed to wind and cold, the Yummie Moisturiser is the best protection I have ever found – and at my age I have tried quite a few! Available from stephkilkenny.com
I’ve found a garden kneeler invaluable to help prevent back pain – mine has a reinforced base for durability and has survived many a rain shower –it’s from Kent and Stowe at Dangan House Garden Centre. You’ll find a vast range of garden gifts in the Coach House at Dangan including bird feeders of all shapes and sizes, as well as online at galwaygardencentre.ie I’d be wary of buying plants for someone unless you’re very familiar with their garden conditions – but a gift voucher from a local garden centre is bound to be very welcome and gives them the gift of choice, as well as helping local, often small businesses to keep the show on the road in this challenging year.
All - natural Jojoba Hand Cream for hard working hands, from stephkilkenny.com
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