Posted: 16/02/2015 at 14:53
Part 2. Just in passing I did take the plunge and sow some Roma Tomatoes in the greenhouse yesterday as the guage registered 20c. They were the remains of a 37p packet I bought at a Car boot last year, so if they don't take I've lost nothing.
Anyway back to Biodynamics which really means organic gardening using the forces of nature. The constellations play a large part in the plan, and at this stage we must not get confused with astronomy or Brian Cox would have a fit! As the Moon passes from Sagittarius to Gemini, it passes in front of all 12 signs of the Zodiac. In doing so it strengthens the force of each, and this action has a direct effect on the Earth. Not only gardeners notice benefits but Beekeepers also follow the Calender, and there have been many interesting articles and books written on the subject since the 1920's.
Taurus/Virgo & Capricorn represent Earth and therefore Roots. When the Moon passes in front of these signs it is time to enrich & prepare soil. Make sowings, thin and plant out root crops.All vegetables at this time will be more resistant to parasites.
Cancer/Scorpio & Pisces represent Water and therefore Stems & Leaves. You can benefit from the Moon passing in front of these constellations to care for lettuce/spinach and asparagus, and if you harvest at this time these particular crops will be tastier.
Gemini/Libra & Aquarius represent Air and therefore flowers.The Moon passing in front of these constellations encourage perfume and brightness. Use the Moon passing these constellations to tend Flowers/Artichokes/Cauliflowers and Broccoli.
Aries/Leo & Sagittarius represent Fire giving heat necessary to ripen fruit and encourage seed formation. Tend your Fruit trees/Peas/Beans and Tomatoes when the Moon passes in front of these constellations.
Something to note is that some vegetables fall into 2 categories - For example Onions and Beetroot come under Root and Leaf, but the keeping quality is best when harvested on Root Days. Broccoli and Cauliflower which could be placed under Leaf are actually frimer and stronger when sown on Flower Days.
I will give you a vegetable and flower guide as the year progresses.
The last point to bear in mind is the subject of Conjunctions - This is when 2 or more planets stand behind one another in space. It is then only the planet closest to the Earth which has any influence on plant growth. If this influence is stronger than the Moon then it can have a detrimental effect on plant growth. Sowing at these times can harm a plan't regenerative power and the crop will be poor. Such Conjunctions will be mentioned in the year's Calender as I am incorporating the BioDynamic and Lunar together.
On the practical side, it is imperative with Biodynamic Gardening that no chemicals whatsoever are used. They form a barrier against the natural actions of the stellar and planetary forces. Alternative mixtures or Purins can be made using herbs to make brews (Like Nettle and Comfrey) to protect/feed our crops. Companion Planting forms a big part in Biodynamics. The Companion Planting Thread on the Forum is full of good tips, and I notice that Seed Brochures now recommend companions.
I think now is the time to pause. Part 3 will be the Calender together with Key Dates to watch out for this year, if nothing else out of curiosity.
All Queries welcome.