At the end of June we went to the GrowLondon Garden Fair, and one of our favourite finds was the Niwaki range of Japanese garden tools and kitchen knives. Their secateurs have long since been the pruning tools of choice for discerning horticulturists (at Chelsea we noticed just about every garden designer we saw carrying a pair, and Monty Don describes them as one of his five all time favourite gardening tools). With their distinctive yellow and red handles, they are more rugged than Western secateurs and much, much sharper. They are also, at £69, quite expensive, though we think worth the investment. So far so good for the horticulturists out there. But it’s Niwaki’s snips, which we bought for £12 and use every day—for cutting flowers, chopping herbs, deadheading and a load of other daily jobs—that we really recommend as one of our best buys this year. Even if you only use garden scissors to trim the ends from a bunch of supermarket flowers, these are the ones to get. They just do the job better than any others we’ve come across. But all the Niwaki tools are excellent and the website sells everything you might ever need in terms of cutting, from sharpeners and camellia oil (the Japanese choice when it comes to protecting your blades from rust) to chopping boards and every type of kitchen knife, whether it be a pair of clever little scissors in a magnetic case to keep on your fridge (£5), or a single bevelled white paper steel 26cm Yanagiba sashimi knife—yours for £259.