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How to do Full-Moon Planting

By Lorraine O'Neil ; Updated September 21, 2017

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.

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.

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.

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 Will Need

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


  • Seeds and plants can absorb water better during the full moon, so it is also a good time to water your garden.

About the Author


After graduating college in December, 2008, Lorraine O'Neil began working full-time as a freelance writer. Since she has been working professionally, O'Neil's articles have been published on websites such as DIY Chatroom. O'Neil holds a Bachelor of Arts in legal studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.