Home Ground: Sanctuary in the City by Dan Pearson $19.79 US: You can’t go wrong with a book, and I think that the Holidays are a great opportunity to gift books that friends might not buy for themselves otherwise. I found this beautiful, diary-like garden book at a local cookbook shop and was instantly drawn to its quiet, contemplative mood. Vibrant, full-page photos that are printed on contrasting matte and high gloss papers helped a lot, too. It’s the perfect book for inspiring new dreams as you while away the winter (and its stupid, ass face).
I may have to “gift” a second copy to myself.
CobraHead® Long Handle Weeder and Cultivator $59.95 US: I rarely promote tools and products on this site because I know from experience that one does not require legions of such things to grow a successful or beautiful garden. However, a few good-quality tools that will not break in hard, compacted, urban soil are indispensable and worth the investment.
My favourite tool bar none is the regular, short-handled Cobrahead®. It is still my #1 go-to tool for most tasks and I leave it perched on the edge of one of the raised beds where it is always available for quick use. I still have the original that Cobrahead® sent me in 2003 and it looks and functions exactly as it did back then, only with a lot more dirt on it.
A few years ago, Cobrahead® sent me their long-handled version to review. While it is a very good tool for weeding or meeting unfriendly strangers in dark alleys on the way home from long days at your community plot, we’ve found that its best use in our garden is as a compost turner (I say “we” here because as the official compost turner, Davin uses this tool more than I do). When the tool was stolen from our community garden, I felt panicked as to how we would ever effectively turn our compost again. The thin hook really gets in there and grabs chunks easily in a way that I’ve never been able to easily accomplish with a shovel or fork. And the long handle ensures that I don’t have to hoist my body right into the bin to work it around well.
GIVEAWAY: Cobrahead® is giving away one Long Handle Weeder and Cultivator (U.S & Canada only) and one short-handled CobraHead® Weeder and Cultivator (Worldwide). Please leave a comment below and I will chose a winner at random next Wed. Dec 14 at 5pm EST. Your entry can be as simple as “Count me in.”