John Gibson: Now strut your stuff, Monty Don

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I’ve got to ask Monty Don, the television gardener, what he’s doing wasting his time and talent pussyfooting with pansies and digging holes in the ground when he could be a prime-time hunk, earning really big bucks in something like, God forbid, Strictly or I’m a Celebrity? And they need a fresh face on Match of the Day.

A mole tells me Monty’s a closet Hibs supporter but I disbelieve. I’ve no doubt, though, that what the unbearable Bear Grylls can do, Monty can do infinitely better.

Meantime he firmly believes the answer lies in the soil. “I would like to see a garden or an allotment compulsory, so if it’s a flat it comes with an allotment, and if it’s a house it has to have a garden . . . nobody is going to get interested in gardening by reading books and learning Latin names.”

Monty’s latest book is The Road to Le Tholonet – A French Garden Journey. I can tell him now, he won’t see it snaffled from the shelves of Edinburgh’s bookshops.

Jamie jazz

Among the wide-ranging attractions booked for the Usher Hall’s autumn season, Jamie Cullum is on tonight, a budding piano-player. No disrespect to Jamie, who I’ve yet to catch live. It’s just that I was weaned on Oscar Peterson. Cullum sold out last time he was here.

Meantime, Bryan Ferry isn’t the scruff he used to be and I’m joking. Reported he has been seen loitering in Savile Row, searching for a decent suit for his engagement at he Usher on November 13.

We have to wonder whether The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Lon Chaney will be knocked back at the Usher door on October 31. A silent classic livened by organist Donald Mackenzie’s accompaniment.