The weather definitely is changing, how much is down to natural processes and how much is caused by us humans, is another debate entirely!

Warmest February on record
March 2019

It’s amazing (not to mention shocking) how some world leaders still deny climate change when here in Scotland we’ve had the driest January since records began (in this area) and the warmest February temperatures ever recorded, while on the other side of the pond Las Vegas is experiencing both snowfall and - a few days later - the hottest temperature ever! Bonkers!

Anyway, the effects of this warm winter are certainly visible in my garden; I have planted out my young cauliflower plants, (still covered because you just never know!); the birds are singing; the crocuses are flowering and I have even sat outside in the sun (instead of studying - I just can’t find much enthusiasm for wavelengths and mathematics). I’ve also noticed that the colt’s foot is flowering a month earlier than it did last year. Nature’s Calendar is an online recording system by the Woodland Trust, which asks members of the public to keep track of and record certain nature events, like the colt’s foot first flowering or the first cuckoo heard/seen. Biologists and ecologists use this information to see how weather is affecting wildlife. I have been doing this for a few years now and it is really cool to see the differences myself. So, now I know that in my garden, not only has the colt’s foot flowered over a month earlier than last year, but our ‘resident’ cuckoo has been coming over in exactly the same week every year! For a couple of years I’m sure it’s been on exactly the same date! Nature’s Calendar is free and easy to use and I would recommend giving it a go, if not to help research, then just for the sheer fun of it.

March will also be the month when I start sowing cabbages and tomatoes and if the weather stays like this, I might even start planting the onions out in the garden. I have already started off my sweet peppers and chilli peppers and they are growing nicely. Because they need such a long growing season that it is better to sow them in January indoors on the window sill and then when they get too big, I plant them out in the greenhouse.

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