Bridget

Posts Tagged ‘full moon’

On Spring work and planting by the Moon.

In Garden, sustainable living on March 5, 2012 at 7:14 pm

Everything is greening up again, the dull tones of Winter are slowly being replaced by fresh greenery. Trees are about to burst forth and change the tone of the landscape from Winter hibernation to Spring exuberance. We are 600 ft above sea level here in the valley so it will come a little later here. Anticipation!

As evening falls after a lovely sunny day it is cold. The Met Office say it will be frosty tonight.

Working outdoors is such a joy on days like today. I spent the afternoon bringing farmyard manure from the pile which has been rotting down nicely for over a year, into the polytunnel and digging it into the beds. We don’t dig very deeply here, the daub can be as much as only 6 inches below the topsoil. Deep digging would just be bringing up daub which just dries into really hard lumps, like stone. After being brought up on good Tipperary land I got a bit of a shock the first day I stuck a spade into heavy, wet Roscommon soil! Outdoors we have a large mulched area which is never dug, just mulched each year when the soil warms up. There are also raised beds which are topped up with garden compost or manure every year.

Through the Birch trees, though darkness has not yet fallen the waxing Moon is visible. Full Moon is on Wednesday so the coming days are busy with planting. Sowing and planting by the Moon is an old tradition from when people had more of an awareness of the planets and their affect on humans, animal and plant  life. It is adhered to by people who practise Bio Dynamic gardening. We do not use BD systems here as they are not compatible with a vegetarian lifestyle but we do use Moon planting. The days leading up to full Moon are when leaf crops are planted. Tomorrow I shall plant Spinach, Rocket and Lettuce. Wednesday is a fruit day. This is when plants that bear their seeds within the fruits. Tomatoes, Peas, Beans, Cucumber and Squashes come within this realm. After full Moon is the time to plant root crops, Carrots, Parsnips, Beetroot and Potatoes belong to those days. I have noticed on previous years that seeds sown according to this system do seem to germinate quicker. It is also said that they are less susceptible to disease. For us it is a good way to break up the work at this time. With so much to be planted it gives a bit of direction on what to plant on given days. So for the next few days its busy, busy, busy!

Spring Equinox.

In Gardening on March 21, 2011 at 1:21 pm

So here we are at Spring Equinox already. I love this time of year. One is filled with anticipation of the coming Summer, warmer weather and of course the abundance of the garden and hedgerows. This is the real first day of Spring. Of course this one is extra special because of the full Moon which was incredible. Apparently it’s the closest the Moon has been to earth in 800 years. We have the lenghtening days to look forward to and each day the Sun is gaining strength.

In the polytunnel the Peach tree has sent forth its first blossom. Oooh, the joy of a fresh peach from one’s own garden. Last year we had about 40 peaches. They were so different from the hard tasteless ones available in the supermarket. So juicy and delicious, it was heavenly to go out and pick a fresh peach for breakfast.

As has become our tradition we planted potatoes on St. Patrick’s. Three varieties: May Queen, Epicure and Sharpe’s Express were planted in bags. We had five of each variety which we got from Seed Savers in Scariff as a bonus of our membership.

Old compost bags were used, about six inches of garden compost placed in the bottom, potatoes on top, then a couple more inches of compost. As the potatoes grow more compost is added until the bag is full. If you are going to try this turn the bag inside out. The bags are usually black inside so this draws and holds the heat better. Don’t forget to put some holes in the bottom of the bag for drainage.