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Abnormal Winter Growth on My Vegetable Garden

Our plants are not well-adapted for rapid and sustained changes in temperatures

Photo by author.

I took these photos on January 1st, 2022. A week before Christmas temperatures rose and they stayed there. My lettuce feels great. I keep it under a thin blanket, but that’s about it. No artificial heating or lighting.

I’m from the northern Balkans part of Europe, normally we’d be having continental winters with snow, ice, and all that stuff. Instead, we’re eating fresh home-grown lettuce for dinner.

Older folks tell me, winters in the ’80s were not quite like the winters in the ’70s. I remember that winters in the ’90s were not the same as the winters in the ’80s. But a winter was still a winter.

The Winter of 1985. Photo by author’s mother.

Then after 2010 everything just got batshit crazy. At first, a few warm days during the winter was just an anomaly that happens every 5 years or so. After that, they started happening every year.

Now it seems like winters are just an extended autumn, punctuated with a few bouts of properly cold weather.

It shouldn’t be like this.

When plants adapt to a certain climate they don’t adapt just to the temperature range but to the entire multidimensional structure of the region. That also means sun exposure patterns, humidity, winds, etc. These factors also define breeding habits of insects, slugs, mammals, and other animals which feed on these plants. The entire biosphere is synced to itself and to the planetary conditions.

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