YouTube Channel: PermacultureMedia
As a gardening enthusiast, although still an amateur, I am always researching and considering new and alternative gardening techniques that I could try. There are many basic techniques that vegetable gardeners vouch for such as organic methods, crop rotations, composting techniques, fertilizing techniques, no-dig gardening and intensive farming practices. Some new techniques that I have recently been introduced to is lunar gardening and biodynamic Gardening.
When I first heard about lunar gardening, it all sounded a bit “hippy” to me. The notion of planting certain crops according to what moon phase was occurring, what astrological sign is currently underway and whether the moon is ascending or descending is all a bit otherworldly to me. But, being an open-minded person I was willing to do a little research to see if any of it made sense to me. This is the same for biodynamic gardening. I was originally aware that it is a form of permaculture that took organic gardening to a whole new level. It wasn’t until I read Lunar & Biodynamic Gardening by Matt Jackson that I really started to understand the extent of these ancient gardening forms.
This book is a great beginners guide to these gardening techniques. It introduces the two topics right from the start and slowly eases the reader into the more technical jargon later on in the book. The book explains the concept of lunar gardening separately from biodynamic gardening however, emphasizes the need to practice lunar gardening if you are attempting to achieve a biodynamic garden. Jackson explains Lunar gardening in the simplest of terms and refrains from being too technical. This technique however, still appears to be one that needs to be tried and tested by the individual to believe in the results. I have began attempting to incorporate a lunar technique in my very own backyard. I haven’t been following a moon calendar for long so I am yet to be able to definitively determine whether the technique is working or not, but regardless, it is actually nice to have a schedule for my gardening. I know exactly what I am going to be doing and when and I even pencil in days for weeding and mowing my lawn, as directed by the informative book by Jackson.
As for biodynamic gardening, the notion seems all incredibly complex and scientific. The basics are well defined by the text and would make it easier for experienced organic gardeners to get started on a biodynamic approach. However, as I have discovered, and as Jackson points out, it is possible and even advised just to start with lunar gardening and master that approach before attempting to become biodynamic. The book outlines basic ways to start having a biodynamic approach for those who are eager to jump in the deep end, without over-complicating it, which I think is fantastic.
For any gardener who is a beginner in permaculture and these two bizarre gardening approaches, this is a great book to read. It is very informative and not overly complicated. There are many pictures and diagrams which makes the ideas easier to absorb visually, as well as makes the text more appealing. It is not long to read and avoids going too deep into descriptions. This is definitely one for any gardener to have.
Featured image via Ryland Peters & Small