Planting based on the phases of the moon is an ancient practice that has been reintroduced in modern times. The idea is based on the fact that the moon, and to a lesser extent, planets, affect the earth’s gravitational pull. Witness the ferocious tides swelling during the full moon, and you’ll have a firsthand glimpse of the moon’s effect on earth’s gravity. The moon also affects water beneath the soil where plants grow, and rainfall. Many farmers and gardeners believe that this gravitational pull affects plant growth, which is why they plant based on phases of the moon.
Begin by purchasing a calendar or almanac that illustrates each phase of the moon. This way, you’ll know when the moon is new or full. You will also need to know when the moon is changing from a new moon into a full moon, which is called “waxing,” or when the moon is changing from a full moon to a new moon, which is called “waning.”
Different plants produce better harvests when planted during a waxing or waning moon. Sow grass and large crops during the waxing moon. Flowers, lettuce, spinach and other leafy vegetable also grow best when planted beneath a waxing moon. Flowers should be planted during the first quarter of the waning moon, while blackberries raspberries and other cane plants grow best when planted during the second quarter of a waxing moon.
Vegetables with roots that grow underground including potatoes, carrots and onions, grow best when planted during a waning moon. Strawberries and trees grow best when planted during the third quarter of the waning moon. Perennials should be planted during both the third and fourth quarter of the waning moon.
The best time to water crops and plants is during the waning moon. However, it is best to mow your lawn, prune your plants, and trim your weeds during the waxing moon.
Harvest plants, fruits and vegetables that you will eat immediately during the waxing moon. Also, harvest grapes for wine and herbs for oil at this time. During the waning moon, harvest any plants, flowers, fruits and vegetables that you intend to store. This includes food as potatoes and apples, as well as flowers and seeds that you plan to replant or use the following year.