Gardener’s Gifts: 10 Great Gift Ideas for the Keen Gardeners in your Life

It’s that joyous time of year once again. It comes around quickly, doesn’t it? And while many of us cherish the run-up to the Christmas break, gift buying can be a real challenge. I mean, what do you buy for people who already have everything? Read on for our list of great gardener’s gifts.

Keen gardeners love tools and gadgets that make their gardening tasks a little easier to tackle. Sure, every gardener loves their time in the great outdoors, but if you can make things like weeding or sowing a little bit easier, there are very few of us who would opt for the traditional hard slog.

Luckily, most gardener’s gifts are particularly affordable, making Christmas a great time of year to replenish supplies for your green-fingered friends and family.

Stay right where you are: we’re going to suggest the Top 10 Gardener’s Gifts for a little Christmas inspiration.

10. A Bee Hotel

A bee hotel

Bees are a gardener’s best friend, and there’s barely a single gardener who doesn’t want more of the buzzy insects visiting their plot. And while honeybees live in hives, many bees are solitary – making nests and laying their eggs in hard soil or pieces of dead wood.

Bee hotels offer a safe spot for your local solitary bees to nest, mimicking the conditions the bee would find in the wild. Hollow bamboo canes supply a perfect habitat for nesting bees in the springtime – they’ll repay the favour come summer when your crops are bursting into flower.

Bee hotels are particularly active in the spring when you’ll see adult female bees nesting, flying into the hollow canes carrying pollen or blobs of mud that help them create hospitable cell walls for their eggs.

Of course, you can buy a ready-made bee hotel, but homemade gifts often mean so much more. So, create your own “box of holes” from bamboo canes, hollow plant stems, reeds, and drilled logs for a great gift that shows true love.

The RSPB offers a step-by-step guide to building your own bee hotel. Gardener’s gifts don’t have to cost the earth.

9. Personalised gardening gear

Personalised tool belt

We’ve probably all found ourselves in a last-minute supermarket sweep for Christmas presents at 9 pm on Christmas Eve. And the resulting gifts have likely demonstrated your total lack of preparation.

On the other hand, nothing says that you’ve giving a gift some real thought like personalised gardening gear.

Think personalised:

Personalised gifts are fun and creative, and show that you’ve spent a little time arranging the present. Think engraved and embossed items that act as a reminder of your thoughtfulness each time they use them.

8. Hand cream

Hand cream

Gardening tasks are tough on the hands, and it’s not uncommon for keen gardeners to develop blisters, calluses, and sensitivity after a full-on gardening session.

You might think hand cream is a gift that only women will enjoy, but – hey – we’re in the third decade of the 21st century! Men love pampering products as well, you know.

There’s a pretty vast array of hand creams aimed at men. You can always find them because they have “manly” products names, like:

Sure, your dad or brother might not necessarily buy a hand cream for themselves, but that’s what Christmas is all about, isn’t it: treating loved ones to something special.

Like most cosmetic products, hand creams can be pretty costly.

If you’re buying for a man, the following scents will be appealing:

  • Woody smells, like sandalwood or oud
  • Eucalyptus
  • Musk
  • Vetiver
  • Pine
  • Black pepper

If you’re buying for a woman, consider:

  • Vanilla
  • Peppermint
  • Lavender
  • Cinnamon

Of course, you could say that “gendered scents” are a thing of the past, which is probably true for younger generations.

If you’re buying for an older relative, it’s a good idea to stick with tradition.

7. A Scarifying Rake

Hand-Vertikutierer

OK, the word “scarifying” might sound more at home at Hallowe’en than at Christmas, but this is one present that lawn lovers will simply love.

Scarifying is the process of dethatching – that’s removing the surface layer of moss and organic matter to help refresh the look and strength of your lawn.

And anyone who has ever scarified their lawn will know that it’s quite a daunting, hefty old task. It’s entirely possible to scarify with a telescopic leaf rake, but it’s a tall order for more extensive lawns.

If your friend or family member has a larger lawn, they’ll love the MOOWY adjustable scarifying rake, making lighter work of this time-consuming task. The gadget’s teeth-like blades are sharp enough to pierce the top layer of soil, providing air, light, and water for grass plants.

Scarifying might initially look like you’ve taken a tractor to your lawn and completely decimated it – but it only takes around two weeks for the grass to recover; bouncing back with hugely improved health and vitality.

6. Grow Your Own Mushrooms

Morel mushroom

Most gardeners focus on fruit and veg in their patch – most don’t consider fungi as a fun alternative. Mushrooms are easy to grow and – like most homegrown fare – are more delicious than supermarket-bought mushrooms that have sweated underneath clingfilm.

There’s a wide variety of edible mushrooms available, from standard closed cap to exotic oysters and shiitake. If you’re thinking about a gift, maybe consider a species that’s difficult to buy from typical UK supermarkets, like:

  • Morels – we always see these used on Masterchef, but they’re hardly ever available in standard supermarkets. You’d be lucky to see them at Waitrose!
  • Chicken of the Woods – commonly found in forests, this meaty mushroom tastes surprisingly chickeny – hence the name.
  • Lion’s Mane – a bizarre, edible fungus that’s delicious to eat or make into a medicinal tea (not the hallucinogenic type!).
  • Turkey tail – a beautiful, woody-looking medicinal mushroom containing powerful antioxidants and a range of compounds to boost immunity while improving gut bacteria

5. Garden sprinkler

Tuin onderhoud zomer

The ideal gift for lawn lovers: a garden sprinkler. Anyone who cultivates and maintains a perfect lawn will spend a lot of their spare time watering the grass during the spring and summer when there’s less rainfall (usually).

Give them the gift of time – a garden sprinkler helps keep the lawn irrigated when nature isn’t abundantly supplying rain. MOOWY’s static sprinkler is a wonderful gift, with a range of 25m.

Fully adjustable, our sprinkler can deliver a fine mist for new lawns or heavy droplets for established grass plants.

And used in combination with a timer, irrigating the lawn becomes the easiest lawn care task of them all.

4. Gardener’s Tool Seat

A gardener's tool seat

Gardening is great fun and excellent exercise, but you need plenty of tools. A gardener’s tool seat is ideal – a place to store your trowels and seeds and a seat to rest on while taking a break.

And if your giftee has an allotment, the tool seat becomes an excellent place to store your sandwiches and flask of tea.

Sure, it’s hardly the most comfortable seat in the world, but for a quick break, it’s all you need to rest your bones.

3. A portable digital radio

A portable DAB radio

Gardening has to be one of the most calming of pastimes – there’s nothing like getting dirt underneath your fingernails for destressing.

But sometimes, you need some entertainment while you dig or weed your patch – a portable digital radio is the ideal gift.

Whether they soak in all the latest tunes on 6Music or get lost in a radio play or comedy show on 4Extra, a digital radio has an excellent, crisp signal. And this i-Star portable DAB radio includes a built-in rechargeable battery, providing hours of entertainment on a single charge.

2. The Ultimate Lawn Repair Kit

Lawn fanatics spend hours and hours of their time on their lawns, so why not help them out with the ultimate lawn repair kit from MOOWY.

Our Quick Repair Lawn Seed is ideal for overseeding, mending those patches that appear on the lawn over the winter. New, drought-tolerant grass grows in as little as two weeks, bringing a lush, thick appearance to any lawn.

And our premium All-Round Fertiliser brings a swift colour rush to any lawn while strengthening the roots and increasing resistance to disease and moss.

1. The MOOWY Scented Candle

MOOWY scented candle

Winter can feel eternal, and sometimes we just need a little escape from the greyness of a cold, frosty January. The MOOWY scented candle is our newest product, so it takes pride of place in the Number 1 slot of our ten great gift ideas.

With 50 burning hours, the two-wicked scented candle fills your room with the springtime aromas of cut grass, combined with a fresh and zingy citrus undertone that brings the sunshine into grey days.

Packaged in a beautiful frosted white glass pot, the gold detailing feels festive, complementing any room regardless of the decor. And once the candle has burned down, you can reuse the pot as a plant holder for kitchen herbs.

Gardener’s gifts don’t have to be FOR the garden, remember!

That’s Christmas wrapped up

So, there you have it – ten excellent gardner’s gifts that your green fingered friends and relatives will love.

If you have any questions about any of the products we’ve recommended or have queries about anything lawn-related, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Have a great Christmas, everyone!

 

Grass Seed Vs Turf? Which is right for you?

You’re probably reading this blog because you’re thinking about renovating your lawn. You might have moved into a new property, and the grass is a mess. Or maybe you’re fed up with battling your old turf and want a quick fix? Grass seed vs turf: which is the winner for a long-lasting, gorgeous lawn that you can show off to your family and friends?

Let’s face it: we all want the type of manicured lawn we see in shows like Downton Abbey. But getting to that point of perfection requires a fair amount of work.

Whether you’re looking for a total overhaul of your existing lawn or are looking to start from scratch, the big question is always:

“Do I seed” or “Do I turf”?

This article explores the pros and cons of seeding and turfing, helping you make an informed decision about which way
is best for you.

The benefits of sowing grass

Hands holding grass seed

Let’s get straight to the point here: sowing seed is MUCH more affordable than buying
and laying turf. In general, sowing seed is at least ten times cheaper than turfing.

As a rough guide, this table will help determine the costs of grass seed vs turf in the UK in 2021:

TYPE AVERAGE COSTS PER m²
Budget turf £3+
Mid-range turf £5+
Premium turf £7+
Typical turf-laying/preparation labour costs £150-200 a day

How to lay turf

Laying turf requires a lot of preparation. Some of the associated tasks are:

  • Removing old turf/decking/paving
  • Skip hire (at the cost of around £100 up to £300 depending on the amount of discarded sod)
  • Replacing the topsoil (could be up to £30 per m²)

Of course, you can turf your lawn yourself, which will save you a considerable amount of money. But it’s a time-consuming task (if you do it right!).

If you’re considering getting the experts to do the whole job for you, you’re looking at around £500 for a 20m² lawn for turf and labour costs.

So, let’s compare that with the costs of grass seed

A jar of coins

Of course, it’s essential to acknowledge that not all grass seed is the same. It’s possible to buy cheap grass seed and get good results.

But:

Cheap grass seed is cheap for a reason: the rate of germination is likely to be low.

So, for the best results, avoid the really cheap seed. This table should help you calculate how much it may cost to seed your new lawn.

TYPE AVERAGE COSTS PER m²
Cheap lawn seed 16p
Mid-range lawn seed 26p
Premium grass seed 35p

We stock an excellent range of grass seeds at MOOWY, suitable for everyone’s budget, from our Power Lawn Grass Seed at around 26p per m² to our Premium Lawn Seed at about 35p per m².

Of course, our mid-range seed is super-efficient with a much higher germination rate than your average cheap seed.
Our grass seeds are developed by the company that produces lawn seed for FIFA, so you’ll get excellent, hardwearing results.

And remember: for premium outcomes, you need a premium seed.

But – big drawback:

Grass seed takes a while to establish

Sowing grass is at least ten times cheaper than turf. So, from a cost perspective, sowing is the way to go.

But, of course, seed takes a while to establish. With turf, you get an instant lawn.

How long does it take for grass seed to germinate?

First and foremost, you need the right weather conditions to germinate grass seed. Grass plants go dormant during the winter after the temperature drops below 10ºC – so it stands to reason that they won’t germinate in those conditions.

For the best results, wait until the ambient temperature has reached a good, consistent 10ºC, so we’re talking roughly February until October.

However:

The soil temperature is more significant than the ambient temperature. Soil takes longer to warm up than the air, so it’s always wise to use a soil thermometer, even if we’ve had a mild January.

If your soil has reached 10ºC, then we’re go!

Once you’ve sown your grass seed (check this article for the lowdown on sowing), it should germinate within ten days. You’ll see the first signs of life at ten days – but don’t walk on it yet.

How soon can I walk on a newly seeded lawn?

Feet on grass

Grass shoots are vulnerable to damage at first, so avoid treading on your new grass for at least four weeks.

And it’s best to wait a little longer before you start using it regularly – until after its third cutting, at least. This gives your new grass plants time to establish strong roots.

Cutting your new grass helps build resistance, but don’t mow it too short at first. Let it grow reasonably tall before the first cutting (around 5 inches).

Follow this table before walking on your new grass:

Grass seed sown. No visible sprouts. Avoid walking on the lawn.
First growth after 10 days. Avoid walking on the lawn.
Grass has grown to 3.5-5 inches. Mow to 3 inches weekly. Avoid walking on the lawn other than to mow.
Weekly mowing for at least 3 weeks (preferably 5) Regular foot traffic and everyday use.

So, we’re looking at around 5-6 weeks before your lawn is ready for regular use.

When can I first mow new grass seed?

Wait until the grass sprouts are at least 3.5 inches before the first mowing – 5 inches is better. If you mow too soon, your lawnmower could suck the seedlings out of the ground.

Set your cutter blades as high as possible for the first few cuttings. The general rule is:

Never cut more than ⅓ of the grass blade’s length.

Can I walk on turf straight away?

There’s certainly a bit of a waiting game with grass seed. So, how about for newly laid turf?

Surely you should be able to walk on turf straight away?

Well, no. Sorry to disappoint, but you shouldn’t walk on newly laid turf until it’s established – or you’ll end up killing the grass.

How long does it take for newly laid turf to establish?

The advantage of laying turf is that – aesthetically – you have an instant lawn.

But grass plants are only as strong as their roots.

So:

You shouldn’t walk on new turf for at least four weeks while the grass plants develop roots deep into your existing soil. This helps your grass plants strengthen and build resistance.

So, how long before I can walk on newly laid turf?

Wait at least four weeks before you submit your lawn to regular use.

Grass seed vs turf: which is the winner?

Winner's trophy

It depends on your needs, but – as you can see – it takes roughly the same amount of time to establish new grass seed as it does turf.

Grass seed is much cheaper, and your soil requires some preparation. It takes around 5-6 weeks and at least three mowings before it’s ready for regular use.

Turf, on the other hand, offers instant results. But you need to wait at least four weeks before the grass plants have developed roots.

Turf, of course, is much more expensive to buy and install.

Grass seed vs turf: which is better for smaller lawns?

Seed provides the most consistent look if you’re looking to repair your existing lawn (aka overseeding). If your lawn area is small, then seeding is probably the most cost-effective approach.

Bear in mind that there’s no instant fix either way- you have to wait at least a month before using a turfed lawn. So seed is the cheaper approach, and it doesn’t take that much longer until it’s ready for use.

Grass seed vs turf: which needs the most aftercare?

Both seed and turf require a degree of aftercare – mainly watering.
Never let the soil dry out because the grass will die.

Grass sprouts from seed are more vulnerable than turf: turf has already sprouted and established. But, either way, you’ll need to make sure that the soil gets enough water.

Check out this article for guidance on watering your lawn. Never let the soil dry out but make sure you don’t leave puddles on the surface.

Grass seed vs turf: the window for installation

Calendar diary

You can lay turf at any time of year, while you need to wait until February before you sow seed.

Turf is initially more robust in bad weather, while new grass seed can get washed away if there’s a heavy downpour before the seedlings have established. Seed can be disturbed by heavy wind, while strong wind shouldn’t affect your turf.

For these reasons, it’s better to wait for a period of decent weather before sowing from seed.

Grass seed vs turf: which is easier?

Both sowing grass seed and laying turf require preparation.

Laying turf is a lot more labour-intensive. The grass rolls are extremely heavy and usually delivered in a van or lorry.

Consider access to your back garden. No one wants to carry turf through the house to get to the lawn, after all.

Where access is poor, laying seed is – by far – the easier option.

Are you ready to get started yourself, or do you need more information?

We hope we’ve helped you decide which works best for you – grass seed
or turf? But if you have more questions, please get in touch.

We love to hear from you! Email us, and we’ll get back to you promptly.