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09 March 2012

Moon Phases Made Simple | Plant UP When the Moon Rises

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Take Cuttings for Sedum when the Moon is Waxing
I recently decided to try my hand at planting based on the moon cycles.  It doesn't take any more work, and it is not mystical at all.  It is simply working under the premise that as the tides come and go with the moon, so do the water needs and pressures in the ground and in plants.  Basically, when the moon is waxing (or going from a new moon to a full moon), it is best to plant plants that are growing UP.  Any plant that grows up, like corn, berries, and grapes come first.  Then comes the introverted plants that grow out, but hide their seeds inside like pumpkins.  When the moon is waning, it is best to plant plants that are going DOWN.    Any plant that needs really strong roots like beets or potatoes should be planted when the moon is waning.  (March 1-8 is up, so this week I planted peppers, hollyhocks, tomatoes and various annuals in cold frames.  Next week come the squash and pumpkins.)

Please forgive my very bad graphic designing skills here....just go with it...
Most of this is theoretical, though farmers have been using the methods successfully for generations.  After you have mastered the basic up and down rhythm of the moon, you can move on to planting by the quarter.  I think of the plants as growing, introverts and invisible.  The growing plants, are those plants literally reaching UP.  Those are planted in the beginning of a waxing moon.  The closer you get to a full moon, the more introverted plants should be planted.  (Think squash hiding their seeds inside the flesh and the full moon covering up a naked lady.)  When the moon starts to wane, plants that are "invisible" or root plants get their turn.  I think of them as "invisible" because the roots are the desirable part of the plant (turnips, beets, etc.)  They aren't really invisible...there are plenty of green leaves, but they are growing DOWN and hiding their roots.  As the moon slowly fades, you shouldn't plant anything.  Pick weeds and kill slugs and prepare for the new moon.


Have I confused you yet??  I haven't even talked about how you should turn the soil when the moon is waning because the water table is lower or pruning trees at this time because less sap is running....and the various conditions that the moon affects is a vast mountain of information.  I haven't even scratched the surface here, so head to your local library or grab a Farmer's Almanac to learn more (you can get them as cheap as $3).





Anywho, it makes sense.  It seems mystical at first, but then just thinking about the way the tide moves in and out methodically and the way our weather changes based on pressure...why wouldn't plants be affected by those changes in pressure and water?  So anyhow...thus begins my planting experiment with and without the cycle of the moon...would you care to join me? 





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5 COMMENTS:

DeAnn @ The SIP project Friday, March 09, 2012  

I'm game! This is interesting and as hard as it can be to get plants to thrive...any new info (to me) that will help my soon to be garden thrive...I'm game :)

ginger @ literally inspired Friday, March 09, 2012  

Great info Amy! We are big on moons in our house (my son loves them - weird) but not so much on plants. I really want to though. I have tried growing herbs last year and will try again this year. I have yet to try vegetables or eat anything that I have "grown". I might have to pick up that book. Thanks for the info - pinning for future reference ; )

CB @ One Acre Saturday, March 10, 2012  

I'd heard that you should prune your grape vines with a waning moon but I never really knew why. Now I do so thanks!

allenaim photography and design Monday, March 12, 2012  

Hello hello! Interesting to know there are other moonies about ;) Y'all should let me know if you have great success with it!!

linda Friday, March 16, 2012  

My father-n-law always planted by the moon and he always had great harvests, even when there wasn't much rain.

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