As cold weather approaches Europe with a high pressure system hanging over Scandinavia and western Russia is pushing raw temperatures as lows as -23c, we're reminded of course that we are in full winter and that the really quite mild and dry weather of recent is very unseasonal.
What we have to do with our plants is to go with the flow. The unquestioned acceptance of nature. In fact, proper seasons are really important and cold in the winter will help you later on in your plot by controlling pests and disease especially.
There are the cold loving vegetables, which really do like a bit of a chill. I have certainly good crops this year, as well as red cabbage, sorrel, celeriac, leeks and my garlic.
There are so many variables to growing veg and that is what can make so interesting. What is true for me may not be the same for you. Go round and see what other people are doing in their gardens. Take a note as to what they have cropping right now; maybe you can do the same next year.
I am using this time to build up my raised beds with homemade compost. It is a good idea to clean equipment and get organized for the coming months.
It is never too early to buy compost, pots, seeds etc as you might find yourself at home on the perfect sowing day without the few things you need to get on!
Depending on your geographic position, Feb can be the start of your sowing season with tomatoes, peppers, aborigines, melons, cucumbers, and other Mediterranean veg varieties being sown protected on a sunny windowsill, heated greenhouse or propagator to give them a head start for the summer.
However, it is still early and not essential to sow during Feb - March and April are the key months. Garlic can be sown now and will like the extra cold, I have sown my first broad beans in pots in my polly tunnel, ready to put out as soon as nature takes a turn for the better.
You should never be in too much of a hurry this time of year. Let nature takes its time. I always look at the grass; when that needs a trim and has stared growing then is the time to sow your seeds.