IT’S December, how did that happen? The year has gone in a blink of an eye! Right now folks are rushing around buying little bits and bobs as gifts for families and friends.

It might be you’re thinking of little gifts for your allotment mates but aren’t sure what’s any good.

I have a few ideas that I have really found useful over the years. I’m not suggesting any makes or models, that’s for you to decide.

Every good plot holder needs a gardening knife. My Nana left me hers and it’s one of the most precious things I own.

It has a bright orange handle so it stands out against soil if it falls out of my pocket.

Another tool I love is called a Patio Weeder. It looks like a long knife but has a big flat hook on the end. They are so useful,

I always have one to hand and if you keep the hook sharp it makes a great hand hoe too.

A decent ball of gardening twine (or hairy string as my daughter calls it) is also essential.

Try to avoid the cheap stuff as it snaps very quickly and believe it or not a simple packet of plant labels is always handy.

And lastly a good fork. You want one that isn’t too heavy, stainless steel with a good quality wooden shaft. I use a border fork, they are slightly smaller and are a little lighter, which works well for me.

Hope those ideas help, none of them are terribly expensive, but will put a smile on any green fingered persons face.

My allotment to do list

If you have an outdoor tap then get some lagging on it to protect against the cold.

Make sure all your seeds are brought in from the shed, the damp won’t do them any favours neither will any naughty mice.

Last chance for spring bulbs, if you buy some in the sale bin check they aren’t going mouldy

This weekend put out some bird feeders down on your plot, encourage the birds now and they will visit your plot in the spring and summer to eat your bugs.

If you have an allotment question you can email