The Acorn Gift Guide

All of a sudden December is just about upon us and the rush to finish projects, finalise plans and buy presents is in full swing.

To help take the stress out of one aspect of Christmas preparations, we’ve put together a handy gift guide. Read on to discover a few of our unique and thoughtful gifts. Don’t see just the right thing for your loved ones? Pop into the gift shop or nursery to find even more fabulous gifts (and maybe even something for you!).

Don’t forget to check out Tony’s Tips below to find out everything we’re getting done in the garden this month.

From all of us at Acorn Nursery and the Oaks Cafe, have a wonderful Christmas and a safe and happy New Year.


Alex Muir Australia tablecloths and napkins are block printed by hand on beautiful 100% cotton fabric. In a generous 3m by 1.5m and available in a range of colours, they make a gorgeous gift or addition to the table for Christmas lunch.








These Emilie O’Connor  Homestore tableware sets are made from eco-friendly bamboo fibre and include four plates, four cups and a large bowl with a lid that doubles as a cutting board and salad servers. Perfect for picnics, camping or using at home. Plus they’re dishwasher safe!






Having the right tools makes any task easier and more enjoyable and Felco secateurs certainly are the very best. These premium tools are made in Switzerland from the highest quality materials. They’re just the thing to spoil the gardener in your life!







For the indoor plant lover running out of floor and shelf space, we have a great range of ceramic pots hung with natural hemp rope. We can even help you choose the perfect plant to put in it!







For a gift that keeps on giving for generations to come, you can’t go past our range of fruit trees. Apples, pears, stone fruit and citrus are all available and will remind the recipient of you every year when they harvest the tree’s bounty.







The salus range, including this Pure Summer gift pack, has been developed to calm the mind and nourish the body. They are 100% free from synthetic fragrance and colour, sodium laurel sulfates, parabens and mineral oils.






Tony’s Tips

December 2018

Wow! We’ve had 145mm of rain in Surrey Hills so far this November, over twice Melbourne’s November average. The parks, lawns and nature strips are a lush green and the gardens are looking terrific after an unusually cool spring. This coolness is great for some things but has slowed the growth of many heat-loving plants like hibiscus, mandevillea, frangipani, vinca, zinnia, capsicum and eggplants.

Many of these will become available in December including traditional hibiscus and the newer compact pot-suitable hibiscus. To me, Summer is the most colourful and fruitful of all the seasons. With a little help from you, your garden will be as vibrant as ours is.

  • Feed your plants to sustain the rain-induced growth, especially heat lovers such as gardenias, citrus and evergreen magnolias. Use wetting agents and good quality mulches to improve water penetration and conservation.
  • Prune off spent roses and feed properly to encourage the next lot of flowers. Spray the plants with rose spray or Mancozeb to prevent disease. All that moisture = more disease and an ounce of prevention beats a pound of cure.
  • Keep pinching out tips of new growth on your tomatoes to bush up the plants and give them a feed with high K fertiliser to encourage better fruiting. Dust the plants with tomato dust to prevent problems.
  • Now that the warmer nights are finally here, Basil will finally start to grow. Be sure to plant yours!
  • Control and redistribute rampant new growth on hedges with regular light pruning rather than occasional hard pruning.
  • If you have a live Christmas tree, be aware that the foliage softens indoors and it must be put out into the shade for 3-4 weeks after Christmas until the foliage toughens up enough to withstand Summer sun.
  • This is a great time to sow warm climate grasses (Buffalo, Kikuyu and Couch) or rejuvenate existing lawns. Watch out for dead patches or foraging crows and magpies, which indicate Lawn Beetle Grubs chewing on your lawn roots.

Plant of the Month


The first batch of hibiscus will arrive in December, as well as a couple of batches of potted Christmas liliums, some fragrant frangipani (great for pots) and colourful climbing mandevillea.

For the first time, we also have dwarf or compact growing sunflower seedlings in an easy-to-plant six pack available in seven different colours. They provide brilliant summer colour and are ideal for pots or sunny spots in the garden.