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Why does it always seem that the branch that needs to come out is just out of reach. Rather than watch him balance precariously on a ladder, make his life simple with an extended reach pruner. From the always reliable ARS company of tools, these are lightweight aluminum-handled pruners that extend your reach by 4 ft. They also rotate 180 degrees, to get the right angle for a cut. The by-pass blade is chrome-plated carbon-steel and can cut through branches up to 3/4 in. thick.
Mushrooms - the final gardening frontier. We spend a lot of time trying to get rid of then, but most gardeners don't know how easy it is to grow delicious, edible mushrooms. Shiitake mushrooms are know for lending their flavor to Asian cuisines, but their mild flavor is extremely adaptable. They're very delicate and harvesting them fresh is the way to enjoy them best. Harvest starts in about 2 weeks and lasts about 4 - 6 months. The kit comes with everything they'll need to start growing.
The only thing worse than waiting for compost to happen is having a full composter and lots more debris to compost. While these are not the largest capacity bins available, they are very convenient. Each bin holds about 3 cubic ft. of material, which is a good size for quick composting. They rotate separately, so he will need to turn both, but having two side by side means you can fill one and let it cook, without the temptation of adding just a little more on top - and slowly the process down yet again.
The La Crosse Technology WS-2810U-IT Professional Weather Center covers just about every eventuality: minimum/maximum temperature, humidity, winde speed and direction, rainfall... It's solar powered and has a USB connection for downloading historical data to your PC. It's a great gift for the gardener who likes to track weather patterns and keep records.
It's called a mule because of its strength, not because it's difficult to work with. It converts from a wheelbarrow to a hand truck to a dolly. I want one. There are accessories for easily filling leaf bags, transporting pots, firewood, bags of whatever and large rocks. With a a 4 cubic foot / 300 lb. capacity, I can think of many jobs for this cart and when it's this easy, think of how many things will get done that would otherwise have been put off.
For the truly avid gardener, a cold frame is essential. It lets you get started before other gardeners and keeps vegetables going into the winter. It's an efficient 40 inches x 48 inches x 16 inches high in the center, with a 2 sided roof, for easy access. The walls are 4mm polycarbonate, which will buy him a few degrees of cold protection at either end of the season.
It comes unassembled, but the pieces snap together. The kit includes window adjustment brackets and ground stakes. The whole thing can be taken apart and stored flat, during the summer.
I was given one of these to test a few years ago and it can become addictive. While it's nice to get shots of which birds visit your feeders and to see just how the squirrels are contorting to rob them, what I really enjoyed viewing was how the groundhog was able to sneak into my vegetable patch. The camera is super easy to set up (although he'll probably get a few close-ups of himself turning it on) and very useful in the garden. You can set it for manual or timer, digital photos or video with sound and it uses an SD card or internal memory. You don't need any special software to download the images to your computer. It's weatherproof, (my bungee cord gave out, but not the camera) and it runs on 4 D-cell batteries, which are included.
This tiller gets high marks in user reviews. It's electric, so it's easy to start and much quieter than gas. You can adjust the tilling width from 6 to 12 in. and get down a good 8 in. deep. The forward rotating tines are easy to control and do a good job of cultivating. It's a great little machine for the price and handy to have around, however it is best for small to medium sized gardens. 6.5-Amp.
10. Tool Organizer
No matter how good his tools are, he won't use them if he can't find them. This compact storage organizer measures 5 ft. x 5 ft. on the wall. It's made of a rugged vinyl coated poly mesh fabric with an acrylic no ravel edge. It hangs from brass grommets and has 8 pockets for long handled tools and 8 smaller pockets for hand tools. There are also 4 quick release buckles and straps for things like cords and hoses and 2 more in the center for holding the odd tool. All in all, it should free up a good deal of floor space and frustration.