You are probably already familiar with your climate zone (according to hardiness plant maps, the eastern shore is zone 7a) and are planting in the right season. One easy way to maximize your gardening success is by working with the lunar cycles.
Typically our gardening calendar is sun based, but the sun is only one of the major celestial “players” in our sky. The other is the Moon, and anyone who is fascinated by the ocean tides and animal behavior, or works/lives with children, recognizes the Moon’s impact on earthly affairs. The Moon, apart from being beautiful and magical, has a lot of power and energy. It is very likely that moonlight stimulates the growth of above-ground crops. Research shows that even street lighting does that.
Lunar gardening shouldn’t be confused with creating a Moon garden. A Moon garden is designed for special visual effects to be enjoyed at night. Lunar gardening refers to efforts to coordinate every activity in the garden with the phases of the moon.
Gardening by the phases of the Moon has been around for as long as humans have been growing their own food. Gardeners who swear by this ancient growing method say the water in both the ground and in plants are affected by the gravitational pull of the Sun and Moon, just like ocean tides. Seeds will absorb the most water during the phases of a full and new Moon.
Moon phases last for seven days, except for this month’s first quarter phase that lasts just one day, June 26. The first quarter phase comes roughly seven days after the New Moon with the Moon high overhead at sunset. Waxing Gibbous follows the first quarter and will become more illuminated everyday until it reaches the Full Moon phase on July 3. For the gardener, personally, this waxing phase is a magnetic time for transformation, an opportunity to nurture dreams, build energy, and overcome hurdles.
During the waxing of the Moon, moonlight and moisture begin to increase, a perfect time to plant annual flowers and fruit and vegetables that bear fruit above ground.
The amount of moonlight at different times influences the growth of plants. As moonlight increases (new Moon and second quarter), leaf growth is stimulated. After the full Moon, the moonlight decreases, putting energy into the plant roots.
When we align ourselves with the Moon we’re tapping into an ancient energy current. One simple way to do that is by making Moon water. In the summer months, I put glass jars full of water outside on the night of a full Moon to absorb the Moon’s energy. Early the next morning I use the Moon water for the tomatoes in my garden. My tomatoes are flourishing this year, so I plan to pour Moon water on all the veggies and herbs in my garden. Moon water is magical water programmed by the Moon’s gorgeous energy. Plants enjoy being spritzed with a bit of Moon water to revitalize their energy.