Moon Gardening Experiment 2012

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

All are invited to participate and share your experiences with the various calendars that Cristina has taken the time to share with us.

Many (calendars) seem to be in conflict with each other, so do what you can to document the day that you sow the seeds, the conditions, and when the sprouts appear, and if they are suitable for growing on. Since we have a variety of calendars from which to chose this year, we can sow something on almost every day. It will be interesting if any are trying out the different calendars, and to see which one works the best for you.

It does not matter which one you follow or which one you prefer. We are all interested to see what kinds of results we can gather. I, myself, will try a variety and then see if there are different results.


Feb 2nd-3rd FA - Any Seed Planted Now Will Tend To Rot.
2 February 2012

Root Planet: Taurus MOON: First quarter, Waxing gibbous
Sow vegetables that produce internal seed bearing fruits. Tomatoes, beans, peas, peppers, chillis, pumpkins.

Moon in Taurus: Earth sign. Sow Root plants like Garlic, Onions, Shallots, Spring Onions, do not sow Flower plants like Broccoli...

Moon in Taurus: Sow Root vegetable crops.

So taking all of this into account as well as what I had to sow and the time available, I sowed the following seeds yesterday, indoors, under lights, February 2nd:

TPS (true potato seeds) 2009 Blue (from a trade)
TPS 2010 Blue (from a trade)
TPS Park Seed Zolushka pelleted seed 2010

Beet Bull's Blood Pinetree Seed 2010
Beet Chiogga Pinetree Seed 2010
Beet Cylindra Pinetree Seed 2003
Beet Ruby Queen Pinetree Seed 2002

Florence Fennel Pinetree Seeds 2010

This message was edited Feb 15, 2012 3:19 PM

Temuco, Chile(Zone 9b)

This is very good Evelyn, I also put some potatoes, some onion and beetroot on the ground, we are in Summer here down south and I have continue sowing few plants of different vegetables as part of continuous planting during growing season.

By the way on the 8th Feb. you will have the right day for sowing celery seed: it will be a Leaf day with a Full Moon under cancer, just what celery needs!

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

Evelyn,I am most interested in following your experiments!

I have sprouted Babington Leeks in the crisper drawer that need planting, but the potting soil I just bought is still in the truck and now very cold. I need to bring it inside to warm, and will document when I plant...

I want to order the Biodynamic Planting Calendar for 2012, but I'm broke.

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Darius ~ Cristina will continue to post all of the calendars, so go ahead and let us know what you sow and plant. I went out today so no planting sowing or even planning. I will check my seeds and the calendars and see what will be next to plant.

I am also trying to get the seeds that need a head start planted early this year, but have already missed the boat on some of them.

Thanks again, Cristina, for taking the time to post all of the calendars.

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

4 - 5 February 2012

FA: Flower Planet: Gemini MOON: Waxing gibbous

This is a good time to sow vegetables that produce internal seed bearing fruits. Tomatoes, beans, peas, peppers, chillis, pumpkins.

Moon in Gemini: Air sign. Sow Flowering plants like Broccoli. Do not sow Rooting plants like Garlic, Onions, Shallots ...

Moon in Gemini: Barren and dry, and yet good for promoting flower growth.

Sometimes I cannot fathom the meanings here. Still today, Feb 5th, I sowed the following seeds (indoors, under lights):

Artichoke Violetto Pinetree Seeds 2010
Broccoli Calabrese Pinetree Seeds 2010
Broccoli De Cicco Ferry Morse 2010
Broccoli De Cicco Ferry Morse 2007
Broccoli Waltham 29 Excel Seed 2004

Lisianthus Cinderella Blue Park Seed 2010
Pentas Graffiti Violet Pinetree Seeds 2010
Pentas Graffiti White Pinetree Seeds 2010
Pentas Butterfly Sparkler Mix Burpee 2010

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

6 February 2012

6th-10th Clear Ground, Turn Sod. Kill Plant Pests.

Flower Planet: Gemini MOON: FULL

Now is a good time to sow root vegetables, berries, bulbs, onions, biennials, and perennials.

Moon in Gemini: Air sign. Sow Flowering plants like Broccoli. Do not sow Rooting plants like Garlic, Onions, Shallots. Fruits Harvested now should be eaten straight away.

Moon in Cancer: This is a good time for germination

I have a question, is the full moon in Gemini or in Cancer? And more conflicting advice. However I have started the following seeds, inside, under lights:

Abutilon Bella Mixed
Abutilon Summer Sherbet
Geranium (Pelargonium) Border Mixed
Gerbera California Mixed

Last year I waited too late to plant these, so hopefully this Bio Dynamic chart will be of advantage. This is the time of year to sow all the seeds that take a long time from sowing to bloom, whether or not they germinate easily. As soon as the moon is in Cancer I will sow the celery, and plant out the starts that I picked up on Sunday at a nursery in the next county. (Amador Flower Farm)

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

Evelyn, good trials! Your data sounds like this site... too bad they don't specify just what time the moon moves into a new sign. I'm GMT +5

Quick view/Overview

I plan to start my Babington Leeks on Saturday, and some sage today. I ordered lots of seeds in November, need to check what else can be planted early. I'm hoping I ordered artichokes, memory is lousy anymore!

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Thanks, Darius!

The more I look at these charts and their conflicts, the more confused I get. However, I will carry on...and on...! LOL!!!

8 February 2012

FA: Leaf Planet: Gemini MOON: FULL

Synodic: Do sow root vegetables, biennials, and perennials.

Biodynamic: Moon in Cancer: Water sign. Do sow Leaf plants like Cabbages. Do not sow Fruiting plants like Broad Beans,Cucumbers. Fruits Harvested today will not keep long.

Sidereal: Moon in Cancer: good seed germination.

Still I do not know if the moon is in Cancer, which is fruitful, and Gemini which is not.

So here goes:

Celery Utah - seeds sown outside in SFG and cell pack and indoors in cell pack.
Lake Valley Seeds 2012
Celery Giant Pascal 1-6 pack, (though more than 6 plants)
Lettuce Bibb cell pack indoors
Ferry-Morse 2008
Chard Charlotte cell pack indoors
Pinetree Seeds 2010
Chard Bright Lights cell pack indoors
T&M 2008

Viola odorata Queen Charlottte
Chiltern 2008
Pansy Rococo
Pinetree Seeds 2010 cell pack indoors
Pansy Dream Formula Mix
Pinetree Seeds 2010
One cell pack indoors, one outdoors

This message was edited Feb 8, 2012 7:55 PM

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Beet 'Bull's Blood' Pinetree Seed 2010
Beet 'Chiogga' Pinetree Seed 2010
Beet 'Cylindra' Pinetree Seed 2003
Beet 'Ruby Queen' Pinetree Seed 2002

Florence Fennel Pinetree Seeds 2010

... all sown on Feb 3rd are already sprouting.

'Ruby Queen' and 'Chiogga look vigorous. (No presoaking or any other special treatment.)

This message was edited Feb 15, 2012 3:35 PM

Temuco, Chile(Zone 9b)

Evelyn the different cycles are as they are :

The Synodic cycle takes 29.6 days to complete.(this is an important factor in the differences of the cycles). It then groups plants into categories, Root Crops, Foliage, Crops with seeds on the outside, and crops with seeds on the inside and assigns plants to the phases of the moon which best suits their growing characteristics.

The Biodynamic: this the one I do follow, it is the method developed by Rudolf Steiner in 1924, and the Zodiac signs used where the actual positioning of the signs in the sky, when the moon passed through them. In addition to the position of the moon, Venus ans Saturn also played a large part in the Biodynamic farming calendar

The Sydereal: the moons orbit around the earth is used to find the best times to sow and harvest. The orbit is divided up into 12 equal 30 degree sections to represent the position of the moon in the sky, but it may or may NOT be the same as the current moon position. The sidereal cycle takes 27.3 days to complete......

I hope it will help you a bit. That is why I suggested that you should find out which one is best for you, following your own experience and do not try to compere one to the other, that will only increase your confusion....

To me, once more, the Biodynamic is the best even when Biodynamic agriculture has been characterized as pseudoscience, but it does work and millions follows it around the world.

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Cristina ~ So all this time you have been posting the FA calendar, you have been following the Biodynamic calendar?

Temuco, Chile(Zone 9b)

Yes, in a way I do.

I have kept on getting the FA because it come with many other articles that are instructive, also sort of help me to learn how to find a happy medium ... a bit difficult to explain, I am a bit of a survivor, I do believe we'll have sometime some kind of collapse and we will have to do everything without all the fancy electronic we do enjoy now, nothing to do with Dec/ 2012 though.

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

Christina, I concur!

Nauvoo, AL(Zone 7a)

I have a Farmers and Gardeners Calendar with the astrological signs, zodiac signs, and moon phases. Ya'll are talking about stuff that is completely out of my league. Over my head. I think I will stick with my simple Almanac Calendar that tells me what I should sow and transplant and when.
Half of the instructions on my Calendar does not match half the stuff written in this topic. But then again , I could be too ignorant to understand.

For Example.
My calendar says that Feb 8 was in Leo and the least productive sign and that day was best for destruction of weeds and harmfull growths.
My calendar says that Feb 13 is in the Scorpio and still in the full moon and most productive sign for all plantings of veggies that produce above ground.

This message was edited Feb 10, 2012 9:36 AM

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

I am very confused with all y'all talking too.
I am following Maria Thun calendar ONLY.
I wake up in the morning, look at the color selection for today and see what I shall do in the garden.
Thun has alreasy done all the studies for me ...

So far it has been proven MAGICAL ...

Good luck to y'all

Thumbnail by drthor
Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Yes, it can be confusing. Still, maybe the differences of what sign the moon is in may have to do with location and they are writing those calendars from different locations. As to the other influences, even though they are subtle, they might have a good influence.

As many have said before, as well as Cristina...make an experiment, or at least document what you planted and then when. Then look at your seedlings and compare them to the various calendars. Then we will have a clearer idea of which one works best for us.

That is the reason for this thread. If we participate together maybe we can come to some insights, and then discuss them. As far as I am concerned, I need all the help I can get. I do appreciate everyone here, taking the extra time to share your findings and opinions. I am looking for facts and results however, and maybe you are too.

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

drthor, I'd love to have the Maria Thun calendar!

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

you can buy it from Amazon: The North American Biodynamic Sowing and Planting Calendar 2012

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

Yeah, I know... just need the $$... but Thanks!

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Feb 2nd-3rd FA - Any Seed Planted Now Will Tend To Rot.
2 February 2012

HA! Well those beets did not rot at all, did they? And that was the FA almanac. I am starting to lean towards the biodynamic calendar. Actually, Cristina, I probably read about biodynamics before you were born...although I really do not know how young you may be. Those beets are still going strong. I took their covers off and off the heat as well. I have never started beets indoors before, only in the ground. I was surprised at their speed in germination, especially the older ones.

drthor ~ I MAY believe in magic after all. ^_^

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Darius ~ I *think* that drthor will share with us....

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

or maybe it is just luck !!
anything I plant following the calendar do germinate and I have huge harvests ...
maybe it is magic and luck combination ... I dunno ...

Temuco, Chile(Zone 9b)

Evelyn have experienced the same results even with difficult to germinate seeds, all germinated and have given me excellent crops.

I have used, in Australia the different formulas and that is MAGIC. Over here in Chile is difficult to find some of the stuff so I have only make sure that I do maintain on the ground 3 different compost heaps, the soil is rich and I do not have many pest at all.

Evelyn the biodynamic movement did start in 1924 when R. Steiner gave a series of lectures that started the organic cultivation and, by the way, I am as young as my 65 Primaveras in this world, so I do not think that you are as young as me!


Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Ha! I am 70...but that's OK. As Thomas Jefferson once remarked, "I am an old man, but a young gardener."

I wish I had the resources and the energy to do the complete biodynamic way. If only we could purchase some of the BD formulas. Still, I also have my compost piles and try what I can and also am getting better at what I grow. It has only been since I have retired that I could even pay so much attention to the gardening, as when working full time it was always water before and/or after work and pull what weeds that I could. Then I had several surgeries that slowed me down quite a bit, but I am slowly recuperating from them.

This is the third year I have been growing plants from seed, as previously I just purchased starts from the nursery. We finally got a fence for our small garden area. In it are 8 Square Foot Gardens, and an assortment of other beds around the perimeter, including 3 apple trees, that were just planted a couple of years ago.

I do start some from seed outside (wintersown) as well as starting some indoors. I do have veggies but love flowers as well.

White Flower Border
Dark Side Garden
"Cottage Garden" - Mixed bed...annuals, perennials as well as a few shrubs.
The Asparagus and Artichokes have been recently planted. Last year the asparagus and this year the artichokes.

My garden plan for this year:

Various tomatoes...will share list later
Corn from a neighbor who saved his seeds (I built a new raised bed for this)
Pole Beans
Potatoes (some from seed - TPS)
Oregano (huge plant!)

I will get the list of flowering plants later as I will be adding some as well as what is aready growing there.

What is everyone growing here? I know drthor has a HUGE operation! And beautiful from what I have seen on other threads.

I am looking forward to finding some Roots Organic.

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

Evelyn, the place I buy amendments carries a good sounding BD compost starter, and a field spray. The starter is $10 for an ounce, and it treats one ton of compost. (and they do ship)

I'm moving strongly into food forest gardening (perennial polyculture), in rather lose "guilds". I started my apple guild last summer with strawberries for ground cover around the base of my small 3 year old apple tree. Further out from the berries were flowering perennial herbs to attract pollinators, clumps of comfrey to chop and drop 4-5 times over the growing season (for mulch and nitrogen), and interspersed were pole beans and tomatoes. There are an amazing number of perennial vegetables out there, and if the guild is done right, every plant in it adds something the others need, including fertilizer. Once established, they rarely need watering except in drought conditions...

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

If I gardened in my "forest", the deer would be feasting daily until there was nothing left. Until we had a decent fence, it was "hit and miss" - they hit and I missed! LOL!! (I wish they would change the laws about hunting for deer.) We do have someone on our property each year and they share their bounty with us in exchange for using the property. There are still large herds of deer seemingly increasing every year.

I did get a nice size comfrey root from a DG member. And I just threw down some seeds for borage. They should both be excellent for composting purposes.

This message was edited Feb 11, 2012 4:10 PM

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

LOL, a food forest is not a real forest... and I hear you about the deer. Two days ago I watched a doe munching away on some ground cover just 25' outside my office window... not in the garden, though. First deer I've actually seen in the yard.

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

A "good forest" is not a REAL forest??? OK, what is it?

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

A food forest does use some layering like found in a real forest, but most often just has a mid-size central fruit or nut tree, not a towering giant above it, and fruiting shrubs in and around it. Then perennials are planted around it, chosen for what they bring to the party. Note my description above, posted at 5:07...

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

OK, I get it now...sorry, sometimes I am a bit dense.

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Quote from evelyn_inthegarden :

I wish I had the resources and the energy to do the complete biodynamic way. If only we could purchase some of the BD formulas. Still, I also have my compost piles and try what I can and also am getting better at what I grow.

Darius ~ Thanks so much for the link. I tried looking before and could not find any BD preps. I cannot even imagine making them myself. I still do make some things here, in my own way, with what resouces that I do have.

I do use the rock powders, (greensand, azomite and bio-char) as well as keeping a rather large compost pile. My neighbor is taking back the ComposTumbler that I borrowed. It really did not produce finished compost, but it was almost finished and easy to turn.

Now I will have to turn my piles myself, but that's OK. One is a long-standing pile with hjarder-to-break-down items such as pine needles and oak leaves. I try to take out the pine needles as much as I can and put them on the blueberries instead. They have a nice pine needle and sawdust mulch and the strawberries in there are going wild.

Swansea, SC(Zone 8b)

Hi Everyone!
I am in Zone 8a in South Carolina, and I'd also like to participate in your planting by the Synodic/biodynamic calender system. I have been gardening in my back yard for a few years now, and have decided to grow only Heirloom and Organic vegetables which I will either begin to germinate myself or sow right in the ground. We have had a nasty cold snap with the wee hours of morning plunging from 29 to 35 degrees so I don't want to put anything in the ground just yet...despite the fact that I do have some vegetables/ and lettuces(bolted microgreens from the mild Dec/Jan/ weather) overwintering. These past two days though, a few things are covered in plastic.
Where can I read up on the calender system you are using; other than the Farmer's Almanac? This is one of my "gardening" bibles, by the way. I am guessing that you are using other reference calenders? Where can I see these?
I have enjoyed reading through the Jan. Feb. conversations; and I agree, the information can be tricky!
Thanks! Elizabeth

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

ErzsebetF, glad you will join us... I have a somewhat distant relative in Swansea! Try this link, for daily/weekly updates, although it's not adjusted for EST. (just add 5 hours for your location in SC)
Weekly synopsis on this page, plus other interesting info

I bit the bullet and ordered the 2012 Maria Thun biodynamic planting guide... through Amazon, but not from Amazon itself, just a vendor who's NEW price plus s/h was the same as Amazon's price without s/h. I should have it next week.

I got my Babington Leeks planted in trays yesterday; earlier in the week I did sage, and now I have 2 sprouts already of the difficult white (ceremonial) sage. The reg. sage is still sleeping! Today I planted fennel. the bulbing kind. I really need to look through my seeds to see what I can start early, but any started seeds are also in competition with my cat for the only sunny windowsill.

Temuco, Chile(Zone 9b)

Elizabeth, Hi, good to see you around.
You will be very glad when you see the result you will get by using Biodynamic Moon Gardening.

If you want you can also check this thread:

My aim is that everyone of us learn the biodynamic moon gardening without the need of depending on a book that you need to buy year after years and in this way, to empower us to continue gardening trusting in our own knowledge, just in case of....

Also, more than ever we need to grow our garden with our own seed open pollinated organic seed, grown by you.

In the biodynamic method, this is very important if you are going to try to eat the vegetable / herbs / fruit that you produce.

It is all to do with frequencies and vibration .....

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

Well Christina... I'd have to say only partly frequencies and vibration. Soil health plays a BIG part!

Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

The (TPS) Park Seed Zolushka Potato pelleted seed 2010....sown Feb 3rd...has germinated today...maybe yesterday, as I was gone all day yesterday.

It is so exciting to me to see potatoes growing from seeds. I took off the plastic cover and removed from the heat. They will be under lights for quite a while as they are slow growers.

This message was edited Feb 17, 2012 2:29 PM

Temuco, Chile(Zone 9b)

darius of course, the soil is the base, eh?

So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)


Sierra Foothills, CA(Zone 8a)

Quote from darius :
Evelyn, the place I buy amendments carries a good sounding BD compost starter, and a field spray. The starter is $10 for an ounce, and it treats one ton of compost. (and they do ship)

Oh, I am surely going to order some. I have not yet, but I will. If it treats a whole ton of compost, would you like me to share and send you half?


So.App.Mtns., United States(Zone 5b)

I think an ounce would be hard to share, LOL! Thanks anyway. I'll get some when I'm up that way in summer, for all the compost materials I will have from the garden. Too bad I have no farm animals... or rabbits.

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