Spring is springing, and no time must be lost — with winter behind us, it’s time to start readying garden beds and borders for the growing season.
You’ll find just what you or your favorite plant lover needs right here.
We scanned stores across the North Fork to deliver you this gift guide for getting your garden started.
Hand-Forged Garden Tools
The solidly made, well-balanced transplant trowel ($24.50), weed fork ($24.50) and daisy grubber ($17.50) from Clarington Forge are workhorses in the garden and last for years. (Fun fact: The company, known as Bulldog Tools in the U.K., has been “helping English gardens looks their best since 1780.”) There’s also a Clarington trowel-and-fork gift set ($49.50) and digging spade ($39.95) and rake ($24.50) for children. Clarke’s Garden & Home, 416 Main St., Greenport; 631-477-6770; clarkesgarden.com
Stay dry and comfy with the Statesman Superior Field Runner Boot, designed to withstand mucky or muddy conditions — in other words, a typical NoFo spring. The easy-on pull strap is a plus. $59.99. Chick’s Agway, 1705 Youngs Ave., Southold; 631-765-3432; chicksagway.com
Mason Bee Cottage or Bundle
Bee rancher Laura Klahre, of Blossom Meadow Farm, is a champion of the mason bee, a highly efficient (and nonaggressive) pollinator that prefers to nest in hollow tunnels. Her bee cottage ($65), made by a local carpenter and hand-painted in the colors the bees see best, is designed for about 25 nesting females. The smaller bee bundle ($14.99) will attract about 10 bees. Place the cottage or bundle three to five feet off the ground and facing east or southeast, so the bees can warm up and start flying early in the day. Like most of us, the bees do not like their house to sway in the wind. Blossom Meadow Farm/Coffee Pot Cellars, 31855 Main Road, Cutchogue; 631-765-8929; blossommeadow.com
This sturdy, smooth-rolling steel garden cart has drop sides to make loading sacks of topsoil or mulch a breeze. $99.99. Orlowski True Value, 320 Love Lane, Mattituck; 631-298-8420; orlowskihardware.com
EarthBox Garden Kit
These ultra-convenient, self-watering growing boxes fit neatly on a sunny deck, patio, apartment balcony, or back stoop. The rectangular box ($59.99) is ideal for crops such as salad greens, kale, arugula or chili peppers. The deeper square “Root & Veg” box ($45.99) is made for longer, larger roots like carrots or parsnips, or single plants like tomatoes and eggplants. Talmage Farm Agway, 1122 Osborn Ave., Riverhead; 631-727-3100; talmagefarm.com
The Long Island Cauliflower Association combines annual and perennial wildflowers chosen for Long Island conditions. Selections include mixes for sun, shade, meadows and one that is deer-resistant (from $2 per ounce, $6.15 per quarter pound and $21.50 per pound). Pick up an LICA sweatshirt ($28) while you’re there. Long Island Cauliflower Association, 139 Marcy Ave., Riverhead; 631-727-2212; licassoc.com
We’ve got you covered! From left to right: well-fitting Foxgloves work gloves and potting gloves (both $22) from Clarke’s Garden; Womanswork Tick & Bug Blocker gloves ($24.99) with pull-up mesh (that is, dare I say, opera length) and Bellingham thorn-resistant work gloves ($32.99) with a rather rakish gauntlet sleeve that protects against poison ivy and more. Chick’s Agway.
Landscapers, horticulturists and serious home gardeners have favored the classic look and feel of Felco #2 hand pruners ($79.99) since 1945. The handy leather holster ($19.99) is sold separately. Chick’s Agway.
Seed Savers Collection
Help save America’s heirloom seeds — including Black Krim and Brandywine tomatoes, Amish snap peas, Five-Color Silverbeet chard, Empress of India nasturtiums, and Teddy Bear sunflowers — with the purchase of open-pollinated non-GMO seeds from the renowned Seed Savers Exchange in Iowa. $3.50. Clarke’s Garden & Home.
The charms of Yellow Duck and Babs the Pink Piggie (each $7.99) are worthy of Old McDonald — and of young (and young at heart) gardeners everywhere. The galvanized steel model ($24.99) holds an easy-to-tote 1.5 gallons and is virtually indestructible. Talmage Farm Agway.
For the Hands
The rich, quickly absorbed hand creams made by The Cottage Greenhouse contain the rejuvenating properties found in carrots, beets and cucumbers, and the tubes look at home in a shed or on a kitchen windowsill. Paraben-free and not tested on animals. $24 each. Clarke’s Garden & Home.
If you only have room in your gardening tool selection for a single rake, this one will take you far. With a head that adjusts from 7 to 23 inches, it moves from the tight confines of a garden bed to the lawn with ease. $12.99. Chick’s Agway.
The Kaufold “Backyard Collection” sheds (since 1985) are built to hold a range of lawn and garden equipment, including a riding mower, snow blower, potting bench and wall mounts for rakes, hoes, digging forks, and more. An 8-by-8-foot Cape starts at $2,315. Kaufold’s Country Sheds & Gazebos, 724 Middle Country Road, Ridge; 631-924-1265; sheds-gazebos.com/shopsite_sc/store/html/page85.html