Put That Gift Card to Good Use

*Take an inventory of what you have in the garden tool and supplies room.  Chances are that you have some fertilizer leftover, but just how much? And what kind?  How about essentials such as hand pruners, hoses and fertilizer spreaders? Take a close look – are they in good shape or are there missing/broken parts.

The Garden in El Cajon, CA

*Seize the day.  Many people develop a “bucket list” for either a lifetime or at least 10 years before retirement.  These usually involve places to visit or making a feature in the landscape to enjoy with family and friends.  Lots and lots of garden locations are fabulous bucket list destinations, as close as the next town over and as far away as the other side of the globe.  Some good ones that are feasible within the United States are “The Garden” in San Diego, Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania, the Desert Botanic Gardens in Phoenix and the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum in Minneapolis/St. Paul.  A good approach is to find out the time of year when most features in the garden are on display and plan your trip accordingly.  The same is true for creating a water feature, a mini-orchard or putting green in the backyard.  Seize the day by using that gift card to get the project started.


*Pay it forward.  Sure, your lawn mower might be in good working order, but some people simply don’t have one…for example, new homeowners in the Habitat for Humanity program might be in need.  The same is likely true for other garden equipment.  Put the gift card to good use by either buying needy people a new item or buying yourself a new item and gifting them your current one.  Either way, you both benefit.


John Fech
Horticulture Extension Educator at Nebraska Extension
John Fech is a horticulturist with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and certified arborist with the International Society of Arboriculture. The author of 2 books and over 200 popular and trade journal articles, he focuses his time on teaching effective landscape maintenance techniques, water conservation, diagnosing turf and ornamental problems and encouraging effective bilingual communication in the green industry. He works extensively with the media to extend the message of landscape sustainability, making over 100 television and radio appearances each year.
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