Gardening by the Moon

Gardening by the Moon

Of all seasons, Spring is the busiest. Sloughing the torpor of winter’s much needed rest, I find myself as busy as the waking up bees, quickly replacing the slow winter rhythm with a bent toward frenzy. It feels like everything has to be done at once and I soon feel like I’m behind! This feeling diminishes my joy and ability to be fully present in the garden.

Over the years I have found much needed anchoring in working with the Moon’s phases. Old-timers often planted, harvested, and cured according to the Moon. Every 28 or so days, the Moon completes its comparatively swift sojourn through the 12 zodiac signs while its massive brother Sun takes 12 months to make the same journey. This means that every few days the Moon moves into a new zodiac sign. 

The zodiac is comprised of 12 signs and each sign is correlated to an earthly element of which, of course, there are four: fire, earth, air, and water. There are 3  zodiac signs of each of these four elements. So every few days the Moon moves into a new element. As the Moon is in each sign/element, it encourages the  particular qualities of that element. For instance, when the Moon is in a fire zodiac sign, qualities related to fruits and seeds and ripening are encouraged. There is much to be said about this but what I want to focus on is creating rhythm and order to facilitate being joyfully present in the garden.

Working with the Moon in this way offers me a way of organizing my days and focusing my efforts when I often feel pulled in every direction at once. I choose to align my activities with the qualities of the sign the Moon is in to help me create a rhythm. When the Moon is in a fire sign, I simply focus on the work that corresponds with these qualities and put off other work. Unless!!! The other work must be done. You may use a planting calendar to follow these lunar cycles and I say, about this calendar “it’s a tool, not a rule”. We must remain flexible, after all!

Like I said, there is much to be explored with this ancient concept but today I wanted to offer it as an anchor to stay grounded in the cosmic flow that perpetually unfolds toward life so that you, too, may access your joy in the present moment in the garden!

Happy growing!

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