Planting by the Moon? Romantic, Scientific? A Folk Tale?
It seems it’s all of the above and more. The Old Farmers Almanac gave gardening advice based on the moon phases for each month and region. They continue to do so. They relate many tales of local gardeners relying on the moon phases who grew larger turnips and harvested an abundance of beans. Yet has science caught up to the folklore? Some sources, such as the Rudolph Steiner biodynamic method, follow moon phases and claim abundant results.
The idea is the full moon correlates to gravitational pull upward. Tissues swell, growth expands upward. By the same principle, after the new moon occurs, planting bulbs, perennials, roots seems to produce a positive outcome too. Some scientists will give the gravitational pull effect a nod and others will consider the lunar gravitational pull as something to objectify.
Ute York, in her book “Living by the Moon”, says:
“The old-time gardeners say, “With the waxing of the moon, the earth exhales. ” When the sap in the plants rises, the force first goes into the growth above ground. Thus, you should do all activities with plants that bear fruit above ground during a waxing moon. With the waning of the moon, the earth inhales. Then, the sap primarily goes down toward the roots. Thus, the waning moon is a good time for pruning, multiplying, fertilizing, watering, harvesting, and controlling parasites and weeds”
We know trees inhale and exhale but the earth too? Does it matter? We’ve been planting for eons. Some get it right, maybe have “green thumbs”, some of us are not so good at gardening. Biodynamic farming communities seem to thrive, combining good soil practices with moon phase, astrological understanding. My podcast guest this week, Agneta Borstein, professional astrologer, teacher and Shamanic practitioner would agree. A native of Sweeden, now living here in CT, plants by the moon and wouldn’t do it any other way.
My grandfather was an immigrant. He came here from Lithuania in the early 1900’s. He had a green thumb and though I don’t know for sure I suspect he planted by the moon. Older cultures seem to know this, have this wisdom.
Do you or your family plant by the phases of the moon? What wisdom did you learn from older family members? If yes, I would enjoy your stories. Send us a comment. Please like and share. Thanks, and enjoy.