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Sow leafy greens for winter

Sow leafy greens for winter and you'll keep your supply of veg going well past summer and into the colder months of the year. Now is the time to fill a few seed trays with the exciting range of leafy winter veg available on our seed racks right now, giving them plenty of time to grow into big healthy plants before winter sets in.

Burgundy radicchio 'Palla Rossa' is a perfect choice, adding vibrant colour to the veg patch on even the dullest day. Crisp, succulent Chinese cabbage bulks up into dense hearts, and a winter lettuce such as 'Arctic King' supplies generous salads through the coldest of snaps. Oriental veg like mizuna, mibuna and red mustard spice up the mix snipped as baby leaves, while they're still young and tender. They can also be left to grow to maturity for an unusual side dish.

All will survive without protection, but growth will be better and the leaves will be less damaged if you pop a polythene cloche over the top during the very worst weather. You'll still need to water, but not as often as growth will be slower: keep the soil damp to the touch, but not wet.