Sunday, December 09, 2007

Hand lens - A Christmas gift for the gardener who has everything

Here's an idea for your Christmas gift list -- for the gardener who has everything (but I bet they don't have this!). It's not very expensive, every gardener needs one but very few have one and I can promise that this gift won't be returned. It's a hand lens or loupe.

A hand lens is a small, folding magnifying glass that gardeners and pest managers use to get a closeup view of pests and diseases. They are indispensable for accurate diagnosis of pests like spider mites, thrips and aphids as well as fungal diseases and leaf disorders.

A good quality, glass hand lens costs $10-$30 but will last a lifetime. Many gardeners attach their hand lens to a lanyard and hang it around their neck for quick access. For more information see our review of different types of hand lenses and how to use them.

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