Latest posts by biofreak

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 22/12/2015 at 14:57

Quick potter round plot as gale force winds meant re-stacking log pile and sticking tear in polytunnel corner yet again! Delighted to find (and eat) 2 raspberries! My Sprouts are dreadful this year, but Black Italian Kale looks fantastic, so think we shall have that Xmas Day instead. Chard still producing good salad leaves (sorry don't like the stalks cooked - tried all ways, but then we don't like cooked spinach) Loath to lift beetroot whilst so mild as still growing on well. Onions doing well in cucumber frame. Might try the radishes as per Moon Calender. Can't find horse radish, but it was a baby, and I did keep treading on it! - How do you make horseradish sauce?

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 21/12/2015 at 11:20

Well , I have to say that so far these bio-dynamic weather predictions have been pretty accurate!! However seeing bluebells coming up, and lilacs budding seems really weird. Carol Singing tonight with no hats/scarves or coats is taking December a bit far, but I am actually really really chuffed, and just hope snow and horrors don't arrive in June!!!! - Actually I do know what is supposed to happen , but will save it up for telling you after Xmas.

Here is Lunar Calender 21-31st December

21/22 December - Moon rising Fruit Days. Sow Broad Beans outside.

23/24/25th December-Root Days Sow radishes under cover, protecting young shots from slugs, by popping bonfire ash or better still pine needles around them. (Fallen needles from Xmas treese would work well here) You should be able to harvest them in 1 month. Work out plans for 2016 and make sure you get Bio seeds ordered quickly as there is a strong demand and lots of variety available prior to the New Year.

26th December Last Flower Day of the Month. Plant Amaryllis in pots for New Year cheer.

27/28th December Leaf Days Trim dead leaves away from last salads in potager to allow maximum sunlight to reach last of the crops. Do the same to perrenials but leave grasses alone to give shelter to insects and mammals. (Boots the Bengal keen on this idea! - Voles are a constant delight for him, as unfortunately was a sleepy robin last week)

29/30/31st December Fruit Days. Plant bare root trees and Fruit bushes. No gardening after 3.10pm on 31st. RELAX and have a wonderful Christmas.

Bonne Annee!!

Happy Gardening!

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 28/11/2015 at 10:29

Great to know you're out there. Thank you for your encouragement and kind words.

Keep your notes coming, they all help to build up a picture of this 'alternative' approach to gardening. I have just received my Maria Thun Biodynamic Calender for 2016 as an early Xmas present - well worth having (Author Matthias Thun - Printed by Floris Books ISBN 978-178250-106-0) £6.99. so not much to spend on bags of (slightly complicated) info. I really must get to grips with 'preperations' for next year to stimulate growth etc These infusions/decoctions can get quite weird! And I certainly don't understand how they all work - but they do seem to.

Happy Gardening.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 27/11/2015 at 15:07

Biodynamic Weather Forecast for December is quite cheering, although plenty of rain forecast up until the 20th with the Sun in Scorpio, moving into Sagittarius from the 20th and joining Pluto in Sagittarius and Jupiter in Leo bringing unseasonal warmth from Christmas Day until the end of the month. Sunny winter days are foreseen with Mars remaining in Virgo all month. Venus is in Libra from 13-29th December and Neptune is in Aquarius bringing bright days. Following the accuracy of November's cold snap around the 20th - I have to say that I am beginning to have a little more faith in this side of biodynamic forecasting. May take a gamble with some of the recommended (unseasonal to me - sowings/cuttings)

Here is Lunar Calender from 30th Nov-14th Dec as I am away next week.

30th Nov/1st Dec - Moon descending so remember to continue spreading and digging in compost. Leaf Days - Cut down Bamboo Canes and store for use next year. Start forcing chicory and add further root protection to tender plants.

2/3/4 December (No gardening after 1.30pm on the 4th) Fruit Days. Cut back exposed Fruit trees situated in direct line of Winter gales and brush off moss and lichen and burn it to avoid spread of fungal disease. Add compost or Bio granules to roots and if there is no frost plant new bare root stock, remembering not to bury the graft point.

5/6/7th December (No gardening after 9.50am on the 5th as Moon at lowest point in sky so ineffective) Root Days - Harvest Jerusalem Artichokes/Parsnips/Salsify & Horseradish. Hold back some of the best specimens for replanting next Spring. In mild areas, plant white and violet garlic and shallots in all regions. Loosen soil on  potager and in flower beds without turning it  as frost will help to crumble it.

8/9th December Flower Days - If no frost prune summer flowering clematis. Cut back every other shoot 30/40cms from the soil.(Mine are trying to flower again!

10/11th December - Leaf Days If mild, cut out crossing branches of larger trees and cut out mistletoe. Mask scars of more than 5cm with antifungal tape.

12/13/14th December - Moon Rising - Fruit Days. If no frost cut hardwood shoots from strong fruit bushes and once labelled, plant them in a line against a north wall, to gain new stock for next season, which will be transplanted to new areas next year.

Note:-For those of you planning to decorate your home early  the best time to cut greenery for decorations and Christmas Trees is on Flower Days as they will stay fresh longer.

Best transplanting dates and times are 12th Dec 6am (sorry!) 25th Dec from 8am (I know Xmas Day!) right through until 8th Jan (So perhaps you can give Xmas Day a miss!)

Happy Gardening!



Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 23/11/2015 at 15:22

Joy of joys - Popped head round door in Polytunnel this morning and Garlic has sprouted!!! Great excitement. garlic may be good to eat in France (Huge bulbs) but difficult to grow here in the North. I tried Isle of Wight bulbs (garlic) last year and produced feeble little things. Am trying big fat cloves from Provence and they are up!

Yes Paris was worrying but a long way away. We have many friends there though. France generally on alert and no more migrants allowed in - Might be a bit late though.

What a world we live in now.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 20/11/2015 at 16:41

Well temperatures have dropped and I am starting to fleece up tender plants just in case there is a snow flurry. Certainly lots of rain. Here is the Lunar Calender 19-29 November

19th/20th November Flower Days - Keep warm and turn your attention towards house plants. Putting a layer of grit under bowls so that they do not get too wet and start to rot.Better to keep plants dry in Winter.

21/22/23rd November Leaf Days -No gardening after 8.50am on 21st and after 3pm on 23rd. In the meantime harvest Brussels/spinach and salad crops and put fleece over tender crops. Sow chick peas/lentils/cress and soya in the house for tasty salad snacks rich in vitamins.

24th November Fruit Day (Sorry only one!) In mild areas and choosing a sheltered spot - sow round peas and mangetouts.

25/28/27/28th November - Root Days Sow radishes under cover and short varieties of carrots. Protect against slugs.

28th (after 4.11am)/29th November Flower Days. If no frost plant bare root shrubs and roses. Earth up artichoke roots against wind rock and frost pockets.

Happy Gardening.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 09/11/2015 at 10:49

Hi - Just back from Uk clutching Broad Beans and Garlic. The latter I planted yesterday afternoon in pots in greenhouse as worked really well last year. Delighted to see my 'The Sutton' Broad Beans turning into chunky little plants in old compost heap base. Seem really happy to be sheltered. I shall grow some more on in pots but resisting temptation with peas as they always seem to be poor. Just picked some spring onions from flower border that I found by accident whilst weeding, seem to be from the tinier sets of white onions that I always put in Feb/March as they come right now after we have scoffed all the larger ones.

With the Moon still descending remember to dig in compost or Bio granules now as works in better with microbes in soil on a descending moon (Think of Root Days)

BioD Weather seems to be accurate at the moment. Still lovely and warm.

Happy Gardening

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 02/11/2015 at 15:59

I leave my dahlias and gladioli in too, as they are quite deeply bedded. Have moved some Day Lilies and baby Hydrangeas around (Took some cuttings of latter last Autumn from a roundabout!) Took really well. Just chucked tons of dead leaves around island beds in Potager this afternoon  to nourish spring bulbs. Off to UK tomorrow, Need more Broad Beans! Have tucked everything up snugly just in case this wonderful Summery weather changes before the w/e. Everything soaking wet this morning following foggy start. We have really heavy dew being near the Marshes. Moon was very pretty last night - Still haven't seen Mars in the triple alliance of Venus/Jupiter. Happy Gardening.

Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 01/11/2015 at 09:54

Felt I had over-run on text so have started another Post for Lunar Calender 1st-18th November 2015.

1st-2nd November (up to mid -day) - Moon descending - Flower Days After 1st frosts lift begonias/dahlias/cannas and gladioli, storing bulbs in dry and airy place. Lift and throw away spent annuals.

2-3rd November Leaf Days On 2nd from Mid-day Blanche celery/chicory and scaroles. Weed out dandelions and other tap rooted weeds as particularly weaker now. If you like salad dandelions blanche these instead (Just pop a flower pot over the top and block top hole with flat stone) Make a note to harvest these crops in 3 to 4 weeks (I have trouble with slugs - any ideas??) Cut and burn asparagus stalks, Turn and tidy Compost heaps.

4/5/6th November - Fruit Days Gather spent bruised or wrinkly fruit from trees and burn them to avoid spread of fungal disease. When leaves have fallen spray with Bordeaux Mixture against Peach Leaf Curl and other fungal problems. Take Fig Cuttings after the leaves have fallen. Lift and replant stray raspberries.

7/8/9/10th November - No gardening after 10.50am (UK time) Moon at lowest point in sky so ineffective) In very mild areas plant shallots with just the tips showing.( I find that we are just too cold here - but I might try some in the greenhouse in polystyrene crates). Also try white or violet garlic. Cut down all foliage to ground level on Jerusalem Artichokes, Salsify, Horseradish and Parsnips. Cover with straw so that you can still lift roots from frozen ground (Didn't know this - Have any of you tried it?) Thin carrots sown 1-4th October. Check and rub off sprouts from stored potatoes.

11/12th November Flower Days Clear Borders, cutting down dried stalks except on perrenials and seed heads which must be left for birds. Leave grasses alone to die back gracefully as they provide homes for insects and continued bird food. Plant out wisterias and clematis. Cut back shrub roses and treat with Bordeaux Mixture after leaves have fallen.

13/14th November Leaf Days - Force chicory and plant out cabbages up to the base of the first leaves treading in well. Plant hedgerows and climbing ivy.

15/16th November Fruit Days- Moon commences rise from 12.35pm on 15th. In mild regions sow Broad Beans and non wrinkled peas. (Peas never work for me - Voles just too clever -Boots the Bengal no good prefers fireside now or Moth catching!) Broad Beans in greenhouse always seem a safe bet. Earth up several days after they have sprouted and put up climbing frames for climbing peas. (Are any of you going to try this?) - here's optimism -Now is the time to gather olives and take them to the mill for transforming into oil (Wish I could!)

17th 18th November Root Days Check all stored root vegetables and throw away any that are wrinkly or turning mouldy. Rub fingers over sprouting potatoes to remove shoots.

So there we are. Do keep adding Posts - It's good to talk! Happy gardening.



Gardening by the Moon

Posted: 01/11/2015 at 09:19

Tansy again recommended as a spray against whitefly but you could also try, boiling some crushed garlic cloves, allow water to cool and pass through a sieve, using resulting concoction undiluted as a fine spray in the early evening so sunlight on garlic water does not cause the victims leaves to burn. I have the same problem with the sprouts and empty the washing up water over them regularly from a great height flushing through the 'heads' - tend to soak myself through as well though! Garlic does work (you will need about 10 cloves to make a decent 'brew') The Bio-dynamic Weather forecast relates to our Northern hemisphere and not just to France I'm afraid. Don't forget that I am opposite Jersey so nearly in UK anyway. As it moves through the Zodiac, in the Northern Hemisphere the Moon is ascending through the constellations from Sagittarius to Gemini, and descending from Gemini through to Sagittarius. When it passes through Air/Water & Fire Signs particularly when in alignement with other planets, the forces of those constellations are strengthened, and this can affect our weather patterns, which naturally have a knock on effect on our plant/seed and growth in the garden.

The forecast says (and I have noted October pretty accurate) that the Sun stays in Libra from 2nd Nov - 20th maintaining overall Spring like warmth and bright days with some showery ones between 8th Nov - 19th due to Neptune in the water sign Aquarius. Venus and Mars begin the month in Leo but on the 2nd move into the cooler airy Virgo.Mercury and the Sun join Saturn 19th/20th November and the added forces of Uranus in the Water Sign Pisces re-inforces the strong possibilities of heavy rain or snow . However Pluto and Jupiter in fiery Sagittarius offer a warmer end to the month. (Source Info: The Maria Thun Biodynamic Calender) I still find alot of this info difficult to understand but on the face of it - it makes sense when you follow the simpler Lunar Calender, which for me has proved very accurate. My Japanese Onions have been up for a week now, so I have popped the Cucumber Frame over the top in case this snow turns up! If you look up Stellarium on the 'Net' the constellations are clearly seen, and I can follow the diagrams  weekly, which so far this year have worked in exactly as forecast in the Bio Calender. Would love to have other people's input on this. Does any one out there know more??? Please join in this discussion with us mere mortals!!




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