The relics of the past claim that the moon exerts a certain power over all living matter including terrestrial plants. To benefit from the moon’s favourable action or conversely avoid the bad days, the ancients thoroughly developed a sort of calendar on which each lunar phase is detailed, as well as the yard work to be done or avoided during each time period for each plant variety.

The lunar calendar details the moon’s cycle and each of its phases. The information in the lunar calendar also states the days during which gardening needs to be stopped and other times during which the Moon is lenient. In this calendar, a given day corresponds to a specific moon phase, which is itself determined by its rotation and cycle. Furthermore, these data are also based on the moon’s position in relation to each zodiacal constellation. In short, each day is consistent with a specific plant variety and the maintenance to be carried out. Also according to the lunar calendar, the gardener must respect each recommended daily amount to improve both his gardening work and his crops.

The importance of the cycle and the moon’s sidereal revolution

The moon’s full rotation around the Earth lasts 28 days. When the moon’s first quarter begins to light up, we say that the moon is rising and the full moon occurs a few days later. Those days are favourable for harvest and fruits and vegetables will be the picked and preserved under good conditions. Moreover, plants are able to fight better against diseases. Where the Moon is setting, that is to say, its surface begins to darken until the last quarter. This is the perfect time to amend the soil because plants are more vulnerable during this lunar phase.  However, the plant’s aroma and flavour of plants will be tasty, especially in regard to plants used for flavouring dishes. The moon’s sidereal revolution is the lunar position in relation to the horizon. On the one hand, the moon is rising or ascending when it gradually rises to the top of the horizon in the following thirteen days. Conversely, the moon is setting when its trajectory is descending and brushes up against the horizon. During its ascent, the moon contributes to the sap’s rise to the plants’ apex. Therefore, we infer that the sap is more effective at cleaning up all of the plants’ higher bodies, including the leaves and branches. The gardener can take this opportunity to graft plants or sow seeds. If the moon is in its descending phase, the sap is mainly contained in the roots. Therefore, it is the ideal time to perform a transplant or to propagate plants from cuttings.

The lunar calendar in-depth

The lunar calendar lists both auspicious and unpropitious days for gardening. Regarding the favourable days, they generally coincide to the lunar days during which the moon’s trajectory and that of the constellations meet. This axial continuity seems to exert a bio-dynamic effect on a plant’s every organ. When are the flowering days arrive, it is time to plant bulbs and care for annual and perennial plant. Take this opportunity to maintain medicinal plants, to repot your plants or to perform the taking of cuttings. At that time, the moon is aligned with the Aquarius, Gemini and Libra constellations.

The leaf days refer to the days during which the moon passes in front of the path of Pisces, Scorpio and Cancer. It seems that this position of the moon promotes the growth of the plant’s aerial parts, namely its leaves and stems. This is also the ideal time for mowing the lawn, growing lettuce and picking herbs. In this case,parsley, artichoke, celery, watercress, chicory, spinach and leeks can be picked. The reason is that only the stems or leaves of these vegetables are intended for consumption.

Concerning the harvesting of the orchard and vegetable garden, wait for fruit days. On these days, the moon will align with the Aries, Leo and Sagittarius constellations. The fruit days are the most interesting for the fruits as well as the seeds. Take care to provide the orchard and vegetable garden with all the necessary care. On these days, you can also sow seeds, harvest red berries and pick cucurbits such as cucumber, marrow, pumpkin and melon.

Finally, wait until the next root days to treat tubers or the plants’ bark in order to achieve best possible results. The moon will be in the same astral alignment as the Taurus, Virgo and Capricorn constellations. Then, you can sow, but also harvest, potato, carrot, turnip, garlic, shallot and radish. However, beware of the lunar nodes that can disturb crops and gardening in general. Four of a lunar month’s 28 days are advised against for gardening. Two cases can occur: either the moon reaches apogee and is therefore far from Earth, or it is very close to the Earth and the moon is in perigee. On the other hand, if the Earth’s axis of rotation around the sun cuts that of the Moon around the Earth, this day is a lunar node and it is better not to garden 12 hours before and after this node.

Related posts:

  1. Potting and replanting
  2. Optimizing yield and soil quality through crop rotation

Published in Garden maintenance by Alexander on 06 Jul 2011