Sunday, 7 June 2009

Gardening by the moon

I don't mean gardening by moonlight although I took the photo above when I finished in the garden a few evenings ago, I have been taking advantage of the long summer daylight.

What I am thinking of, is gardening according to the phases of the moon.  I have heard of this before and tended to dismiss it but a while ago I was talking to one of my allotment friends who mentioned that he had been gardening this way for the past eight years and was sure that he was getting better results.  I don't know this man's age but he has talked about his time in the war so I think he must be well into his eighties and he has gardened virtually all his life.  When someone with that much gardening experience tells me something works I definitely start listening.

This week knowing that I was interested he brought his chart to the allotment and explained how he uses it.  The chart he had was from Lunar Organics but I'm sure there are many others available.

I've read through the Lunar Organics site and learned that the planting program is based on the phase of the moon, whether it is ascending or descending  and whether it is waxing and waning. The different states of the moon influence different parts of the plant and so there are flower days, root days, fruit days and leaf days. There are days more suitable for sowing seeds, potting on and harvesting, though my friend tends to ignore the harvesting dates and pick whatever is ready to eat.

Having read it all, I'm still not sure.  Before I spend money on a chart and booklet, I thought I'd ask if anyone has any experience of lunar gardening?  Have you heard any reports of it, favourable or not? I will be interested to find out more about it.  Until that time though I will carry on as usual, planting when I have the time and space to do so!


Susan said...

Where we live, in the Azores, the farmers only plant only 'by the moon' - you can set your calender to all their activities...they swear by it - and judging by the condition of their crops it certainly works for them.
Another fascinating observation is that a day or two after they have planted, it ALWAYS rains, just enough to help germination.
Their farming lives are like poetry in motion, the pattern never changes and there is always an abundance of food.
I remember watching a Gardeners' World episode though and the experts maintained lunar planting makes no difference whatsoever...

Heather L. said...

How interesting -- I can't recall hearing about this before. If you find out more -- you'll have to post.