Learn the Joy of Gardening by the Phase of the Moon

Written by Contributor. Posted in Featured, Home & Garden

Published on March 10, 2021 with No Comments

By Carole Biancardi

If you’ve seen the pages of The Old Farmer’s Alamanac dedicated to planting by the moon’s phases and thought it was interesting but not for you, think again.

Nicole Anderson Schelling of Valparaiso will present Gardening by the Moon on Saturday March 13 from 10:00 to 11:00 a.m. at the program center at Sunset Hill Farm County Park, 775 Meridian Rd. in Valparaiso.

The program is designed to show participants that gardening by the moon is not only easier than imagined but also fun for the entire family.

“Planting according to the moon cycles is the traditional way farmers used to produce their best yields,” said Schelling, who comes from a long line of farm families. She remembers how her paternal grandparents worked their land and garden.

“Before modern times, people worked according to seasons; the moon was the constant,” Schelling said. “Since then, science has reinforced this concept by identifying the moon’s gravitational pull on the earth, the tides, and water. We know plants that grow both above and below the ground’s surface are affected by the water.”

Schelling’s presentation will provide an overview of this phenomenon, with a focus on the moon’s phases and the advantages of gardening in the traditional way.

“Use what you have. Plant in the ground or in 5-gallon buckets. Start with seeds or purchase plants already started. Plant what you like to eat,” Schelling said. “There are plants that grow underground, if you’re worried about your too-shady yard, and we’ll talk about the misconception that all plants need 6-8 hours of sun to thrive.”

Now is the perfect time to being growing from seed, according to Schelling, who encourages gardeners to “grow as much from seeds as you can” and transplant when the moon phase indicates.

“Look at the increasing interest in organic farming here locally,” she said. “Visit the Valparaiso Market on any Tuesday or Saturday during warm months and you’ll see not only the many local producers but the crowds eagerly buying their produce.

“Commercial farmers don’t have the luxury of waiting for moon cycles. They must produce their highest yields using ‘smart’ seeds, pesticides, indicating maybe we’ve gone a little too far with science.”

Schelling thinks this approach may be encouraging a renewed interest in traditional methods for organic gardeners and small farmers.

She also cited a rise of interest in younger people wanting to learn vintage skills for not only traditional gardening but also knitting, crochet, canning, embroidery, and finger weaving. These are skills she shares with her two sons, ages 6 and 10. She believes in teaching youngsters and adults all types of activities once valued a generation or two ago.

Schelling has been sharing her joy of gardening with garden clubs and the Porter County Master Gardeners Club for the past four years. She believes in community education, the idea that you should share your skills with others who will, in turn, teach others. That, she said, is how knowledge passes on and is not lost.

To register for this program, call 219-465-3586 or visit www.portercountyparks.org/programs.

Gardening by the Moon

 

Porter County Parks invites adults to gardening by the moon, an opportunity to learn about the history and science of using the phases of the moon to plan and plant gardens. Participants will also do a make-and-take activity. The class takes place from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. at the Sunset Hill Farm Program Center, 775 Meridian Rd., Valparaiso. Class fee is $15. Call 219-465-3586 or visit portercountyparks.org/programs for more details. 

Upcoming event

Join Niccole for an informative discussion on backyard herbalism, “Health in your Backyard”. Class is on Saturday, April 24 from 9:00 – 11:00 a.m. at Sunset Hill Farm Program Center, 775 Meridian Rd., Valparaiso. Call 219-465-3586 or visit portercountyparks.org/programs for details.

The basic idea behind Gardening by the Moon is that the cycles of the Moon affect plant growth. Just as the Moon’s gravitational pull causes tides to rise and fall, it also affects moisture in the soil. This causes seeds to swell, resulting in greater germination and better-established plants.

 

 

 

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