February Treachery

February is a treacherous month.
Being the runt of the calendar it is always found wanting when compared to the other months diary pages, and the dissident approach to adding an extra day to its measure every four years never fully camouflages the perennial happenstance where it is not only at odds with the other months, but that most of the time it is also at variance with the seasonal expectations of its own annual occurrence.
Deceiving at best, February is the gardener’s nightmare: feigning spring at mid morning, gale backed squally showers by noon often give way to some of the severest and sharpest frosts of the winter during hours of darkness. Yet, we persist with the assertion that February heralds the arrival of spring, the sneaking suspicion being that this has more to do with wishful thinking than any reality experienced in the garden.
The need to shrug-off winter’s pent-up reserves, together with perceptible increase in daily light levels often lull the naive and inexperienced into a false sense of security, and many a seed sown in February’s haste is doomed to be composted with March’s waste. The milk may be moving in the belly of the ewes, and the bright white complexion of Wordsworth’s unbidden guests may be showing on woodland floors, but it is worth remembering that these are nature’s hardy stock, far hardier than anything even the most experienced gardener itching to green fingers may have sown under horticultural fleece and propagation lighting. No one ever truly gets a head start on nature, so, take stock still, while there is still stock to take: hold your horse in the stable; keep your seed in the packet and your pots in the box. Soon enough you’ll get to grubby your hands, but before you set out to lose yourself in the doing of the garden, think on how to do it while there is still time to think on how it’s done.
A seed for cultivation:

“Those who start to garden often do the greatest harm in the garden.”
And suddenly, it is March…

Bedfordshire Champions
Bedfordshire Champions, up and out of bed…

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