Planting By The Moon – Learn About Moon Phase Gardening

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Gardeners who rely on planting
by the moon’s phases
are convinced that this ancient tradition
produces healthier, more vigorous plants and bigger crops. Some scientists
agree that planting by the moon really works. After all, the moon’s
gravitational pull, the force that causes tides to rise and fall, is also
strong enough to affect the level of moisture in the soil. Others think moon
phase gardening is pure myth and malarkey.

The only way to know for sure is to give moon phase
gardening a try. After all, what can it hurt? (And it just may help!) Let’s
learn a little more about how to garden by the moon.

How to Plant by Moon Phases

When the moon is
waxing
: This is the time to start planting annual flowers such as marigolds,
nasturtiums,
and petunias.
Why? During the waxing of the moon (the period extending from the day the moon
is new to the day it reaches its fullest point), the moon pulls moisture
upwards.  Seeds do well during this time
because moisture is available at the surface of the soil.

This is also the time to plant above-ground vegetables such
as:

Don’t plant below-ground plants during this time; according
to old-timers, the plants will be full and leafy on top with little growth
under the ground.

When the moon is
waning
: Below-ground plants should be planted when the moon is waning (from
the time it reaches its fullest point to the day just before the full moon).
This is the period when the moon’s gravitational pull decreases slightly and
roots grow downward.

Take advantage of this time to plant flowering bulbs such as
iris,
daffodils
and tulips,
and vegetables like:

When the moon is dark:
Don’t plant anything when the moon is at its darkest point; this is a resting
period and plants won’t do well. However, many gardeners say this time of slow
growth is ideal for getting rid of weeds.

The Old Farmer’s Almanac offers a Moon Phases and Lunar
Calendar here.

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