How to do Full-Moon Planting

Overview

Farmers and gardeners have used the moon as a guide for planting since the early days of agriculture, and some still believe in planting by the moon today. The idea behind planting during a certain phase of the moon has to do with the moon's gravitational pull on the earth. Gardeners believe that the moon affects the water in the soil just like it affects the tides, and that this force can help plants germinate faster, send out stronger roots, and grow larger. The full moon is thought to encourage root development, so gardeners typically plant vegetables or flowers that rely on strong roots.

Step 1

Determine when the full moon will occur. Lunar gardening calendars and almanacs are widely available, or you can look at the calendar in the resources section for the date of the next full moon.

Step 2

Choose plants that will benefit from full-moon planting. Root vegetables like carrots, beets and potatoes should be planted on the full moon, along with perennials or bulbs that will benefit from rapid root growth.

Step 3

Plant your seeds or bulbs after the first night of the full moon. Full-moon planting can occur any time between the full moon and the fourth quarter of the moon (the time when the moon has decreased from being fully visible to being half-visible). You can plant your crops either at night or during the day, as long as the moon is in the correct phase. Most gardeners choose to plant at the beginning of the full moon phase, right after the full moon appears in the sky.

Things You'll Need

  • Lunar gardening calendar or almanac (optional)
  • Seeds or plants

References

  • Gardening by the Moon: The Phases of the Moon
  • PlanTea: Planting by the Moon
  • The New York Times: Planting by the Full Moon: Bright Idea, or Lunacy?

Who Can Help

  • Full Moon Calendar
Keywords: plant by the moon, lunar gardening, full moon gardening

About this Author

After graduating from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a bachelor's degree in legal studies, Hanna Terhaar began working full-time as a freelance writer. In the nine months she has been working professionally, Terhaar's articles have been published on sites such as eHow.com, DIY Chatroom and The Daily Puppy.