Moon Planting Calendar
A North Queensland couple have simplified the ancient practice of moon gardening with an easy to use Moon Gardening Calendar.
Former nursery owners and commercial vegetable growers Ray and Jean Scott of Kuranda have put decades of knowledge about gardening by the phases of the moon into a simple to use perpetual moon gardening calendar.
“What makes this calendar different from annual moon planting guides is that this is a perpetual calendar that you just reset each month, year after year,” Mrs Scott said.
More than 35 years ago while growing vegetables commercially Jean and Ray started experimenting with sowing crops using the phases of the moon.
“The practice is based on the moon’s gravitational effect on the moisture in both plants and the soil, just as the moon influences the rise and fall of the tides,” Jean said.
“At different moon phases the gravitational pull of the sun and moon are combined to create a high sap run in plants. At other times these natural forces create a rest period for plants.”
With extensive testing, the couple said they found seeds planted in a certain moon phase grew faster and healthier than others from the same batch planted just a few days outside of the premium time. Seed germination times can be reduced by 50-60 per cent, with wild rocket sprouting in just a day or two and parsley germinating in 8-10 days instead of 14-21 days as suggested on seed packets.
“Lettuce planted during the wrong moon phase would go to seed, while others in-phase would have a higher germination rate and the plants would be more robust and hardy, creating higher yields,” Jean said.
The 28-day lunar cycle divides into six periods of various lengths for different activities such as planting above-ground crops, another time for root crops, when to fertilise, cultivate and propagate.
In the late 1980s Ray and Jean started a nursery in Cairns, North Queensland and used the moon planting techniques for growing shrubs and flowers.
“The change in the sap flow of plants was obvious, vastly improving the strike rate for cuttings,” Jean said.
“We’ve also noticed it often rains at the start of a growing period, softening the ground and taking some of the stress off new plants.”
Still gardening, the couple said the calendar provided an invaluable monthly routine which ensures different jobs are done at the optimum time. The calendar also includes good fishing and poor fishing periods.
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