Go Organic - Christmas listBy James Ashford
December 05, 2008
It's December already and the garden centres will be awash with all sorts of Christmas tat.
I appreciate that they need to do everything they can to stay in profit during these tough times but all the same there is nothing less organic than all those outdoor lights and plastic decorations.
If you want to buy a Christmas present for the organic gardener in your life there are a thousand and one better things to spend your money on.
Top of my wish list – as it is every year – is membership of Garden Organic.
It is Europe’s leading organic gardening organisation and as well as being a fantastic source of information and support for us gardeners they also help schools in the UK and farmers in the third world.
A year’s membership costs £28 – cheap at twice the price.
Next on my list comes the Encyclopedia of Organic Gardening.
Mrs Go Organic bought me a copy some years ago and its well-thumbed pages have been a constant source of information and inspiration.
Without it I never would have tried growing rainbow chard or found out how to deal with asparagus beetle. It’s available now in paperback from Garden Organic for £12.34.
One of the greenest gifts you can buy anyone is a plant. But don’t go for an expensive hothouse specimen like a poinsettia which will bloom once and then fade away.
This is a great time of year to buy bare-rooted shrubs like roses – greener and also rather cheaper.
They might not look as pretty on Christmas Day but they will give years of pleasure not just moments.
Gardeners always need labels and string and we're usually too tight to buy nice ones so if you are looking for stocking fillers why not get some of those?
My mum got me a ball of lovely old-fashioned garden twine one year.
It lasted for ages and was a real pleasure to use. Lastly if the gardener in you life already has everything they could want or need why not get them something for someone who really needs it.
The Oxfam unlimited catalogue lets you buy tools and equipment for gardeners and farmers in the Third World and what could be more Christmassy that that?