La Luna! She’s a beauty. And so much revolves around her, including would you believe – crop and plant growing!

The thing I love most about this gardening caper is the more you know, the more there is to know. So I thought I’d finally dip my toe in the Moon Planting waters. I’m willing to give anything a go to get a better crop. And added bonus: experimenting is a hoot isn’t it?!

So let’s first wrap our brain around how it works. First thing is to dispel the myth that moon planting is only done at night. It is not. It is a practice, which has been around for centuries, then forgotten about. Only in the past forty years has it received resurgence, mostly thanks to Permaculture. It is attributed to making yields better – as in more vigorous and flavoursome.

The moon has various cycles as we know. Depending upon how close it is positioned to Earth, it affects the gravitational pull. It also influences the ocean tides, attributing to the amount of moisture present on our earth and plants. That’s something we easily forget about.

The other complexities of moon planting include the fact that subtle changes to the biological functions of plants occur in direct correlation to tidal changes. Consider this: the moon’s impact on water movement on earth means plants take up water from the soil via roots, whilst seeds require much more water to germinate. Therefore plantings at certain moon phases would favour more water for germination, and less water for leaf growth.

We experience four cycles in the moon each month: new moon, second quarter, full moon and fourth quarter. Moon phase gardening lasts about seven days in each of these cycles. The first two quarters are during the waxing or increasing of light, from new moon right up to the growing of the full moon. Planting by the moon cycles will keep in rhythm with the alternating gravitational pull.

This being the case, here’s how this affects your plants the most and what to be doing in the garden during that particular moon phase to get the best from your gardens/crops…

New Moon: On the actual day of the new moon it is rest time. There’s no real advantage of planting or harvesting etc at this time of the moon’s cycle. However as the days increase out from the new moon so does the light and gravity pull of water is higher bringing more balance to plant growth. Best time for sowing of plants with seed heads and edible leaves is right now. Sap rises during this period. N.B. Wait until there’s at least a little fingernail of the moon visible,

First Quarter: As more light floods the earth with growth of the moon, the gravitational pull backs off, ensuring a conducive period for leaf growth, along with a perfect window for plants which produce fruit. Sap is still flowing.

Full Moon: When the light decreases post full moon, the gravitational pull returns downwards. In doing so, energy is concentrated to beneath the soil making this is a good time for beneath the surface growth: think root crops and bulbs. The waning moon also brings a perfect time for transplanting. It makes perfect sense really.

Third Quarter: This is the darkest period of the month with light decreasing considerably, along with the gravitational pull, making it another great time to rest the garden/paddock. Ideal downtime means perfect opportunities to get out there for harvests and maintenance.

Snapshot of Moon Planting…

New Moon: Leaves & Grains

First Quarter: Fruits

Full Moon: Roots & Bulbs

Third Quarter: Harvest Time & Maintenance

So there you have it. A quick wrap up of how to give Moon Planting a go. Some swear by it, testifying that it has increased yields up to 80% which is impressive

Fun fact: Did you know that Munash Organics Rockdust charges the energy more on a full moon.

Words by Hoe Hoe Let’s Grow