Planting by the Moon
New Moon to 2nd Quarter
WAXING MOON PHASE - Strongest gravitational pull at this time coupled with increasing moonlight creates balanced root and leaf growth. Sow lawns & above ground plants and seeds. Plant annual crops such as lettuce, spinach, celery, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower & grain crops. Cucumbers like this phase as well. Fertilise, graft fruit trees. Mow lawns & prune foliage to increase growth.
2nd Quarter to Full Moon
WAXING MOON PHASE - Gravitational pull is a little less now, but the increase in moonlight supports good leaf growth. Sow above ground plants such as flowers, lawns & annual crops on vines or with seeds that form inside such as; beans, peas, capsicum, squash, tomatoes. Mow lawns & prune foliage to increase growth.
Full Moon to 3rd Quarter
WANING MOON PHASE - Gravitational pull is high but moonlight is decreasing & therefore bulb and root crops thrive. Plant trees, shrubs, biennials & perennials. Sow below ground plants such as root vegetables, potatoes, carrots & onions. Good time for transplanting. Mow lawns & prune foliage to retard growth.
3rd Quarter to New Moon
WANING MOON PHASE - Gravitational pull & moonlight has decreased at this point. Weed, eradicate pests, clear ground, turn soil & remove rubbish. Mow lawns & prune foliage to retard growth.
What is planting by the Moon? - Well if you were alive in ancient times it was cutting-edge technology, and no, it isn't going out under moonlight to plant/sow, so your neighbours are not going to think that you have gone 'saft in the 'ed' (as Tan's Gran would say).
Whilst there have not been any major scientific studies conducted that prove the link between phases of the moon and crop yield there is scientific evidence that suggests why it may work; water absorption seems to be greater at full moon but by far may be the plants own circadian rhythms (also see Rhythm of Life).
There are three different methods of 'Planting by the Moon'
- They Synodic cycle - which works with the waxing and waning cycle of the Moon and divides the 29.6 day cycle into the four common quarters.
- The Bio-dynamic cycle - which uses the actual positioning of the 12 Zodiac signs in the sky as the Moon moves through them.
- The Sidereal Cycle - similar to the Bio-dynamic cycle except using the Moons orbit around the Earth divided into 12 equal 30 degree sections which may not be the same as the Moon's current position.
Both the Bio-dynamic and the Sidereal systems are reasonable complicated and may not prove to be any better than the Synodic system - so we concentrate on the latter.