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Plants, Planets, and Medicine

July 1, 2014 , , , ,

Planting by the moon is a simple way to increase your luck at growing anything.  By planting annuals bearing fruit above the ground during the waxing phase of the moon ( new to full), and sewing plants that bear under the ground during the waning moon ( full to new) we follow ancient traditions of horticulture.  To easily determine in what phase of the moon you find yourself, remember this rule:  Crescent moon makes the shape of the letter C when the moon is on the wane.  The moon has the shape of a capital D when it is on the rise.  Think DOC–first D– then full moon–then C to remember the sequence.

Medicine was tightly constrained by local botany in history, limited to plants available and known.    The natures of the plants were studied and knowledge of remedies was shared.   However, before transport of goods became easy people used local plants as medicine because they had both access and some empirical evidence of the medicinal qualities.  Astrology was part of pharmacology and medicine. Gardens and buildings were designed with healing and astrology in mind. Today there are ways to incorporate the heavens into garden design.  The medicine wheel is one way to express the seasons and the heavenly connections.  At Plimouth Plantation in Plymouth, MA a humoural garden is planted to display the relationship the Pilgrims had with plants and healing.  They considered the relationship of the plants to the humors of the body.  They had to rely on the plants they brought with them and those that the native people showed them.

Some gardens are designed to feature the four directions, or the elements.  If you had unlimited time and money to create a symbolic garden what would you plant in it?  What kind of medicine would you practice?  I am fond of all the aromatic plants, so I have a vast array  of herbs and flowers that can be used in tea, baths, cooking, and now in bitters.  The creativity you invest in a garden returns to you many times.


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I love this information. I probably had seen it before in the Farmers Almanac but I would never remember this. This is pretty interesting!


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