Spring begins Monday; time to get 'gardening serious'

By PHILIP CASE State Journal Columnist Published:

Well, folks, just like that winter is about over! Spring officially begins Monday at 1:25 p.m. with the Vernal Equinox when the number of hours of daylight and darkness are equal.

All in all its been a fairly mild winter certainly nothing like I thought it was going to be back in the fall when I was examining woolly worms, persimmon seeds, horses coats, and the like. But then I dont mind being wrong about the ferocity of the winter!

We know now that spring gardening is underway, if youre interested and if your grounds ready. Just pick those veggies from the list below, understanding they enjoy growing in cool weather and can stand frosts and freezes.

It will not be safe to plant warm-weather crops until after Derby Weekend better still after Mothers Day. So, just be patient.

Heres the information for planting this week and below Ill also share the outcome of a question a reader asked a few weeks ago.

Moon dark all week

The moon is in the dark phase now, the full moon having come into force last Tuesday. Until the next new moon or no moon visible in the sky only those veggies that produce beneath the ground should be planted, from the list below or course.

According to the signs of the zodiac, after today this is a so-so week for planting, neither particularly productive nor destructive.

Today finds the sign in Scorpio (the secrets), one of the four fruitful signs for planting anything that produces beneath the ground. Beginning Monday and continuing through Monday, March 27, however, is a long string of those so-so signs.

Specifically, Monday through Wednesday are ruled by Sagittarius (the thighs), followed by Thursday and Friday under Capricorn (the knees) and concluding Saturday and Sunday with Aquarius (the legs) in force.

Thus after today the next really fertile days for planting are Monday and Tuesday, March 27-28, with the moon still in the dark phase and the sign moving to Pisces (the feet), one of the four fruitful signs.

Although it wont be the greatest stretch for planting (most of it anyway), beginning Monday and continuing through Tuesday, March 28 is one of those times to make changes like stopping smoking, starting a diet and/or exercise program, weaning small animals or children, scheduling elective surgery anything that involves a change.

The moon will be in the dark phase and the signs progressing out of the body as you noticed above. That progression being thighs, knees, legs, and feet. So if you have changes to make, according to The System, this would be the time to get started. Just be underway before Wednesday, March 29, when the sign moves back to Aries (the head).

A testimony

A few weeks ago a lady called with what some may believe a bizarre inquiry. I, however, took it quite seriously. She asked, for a friend, when would be the best time to take a test for a state job, according to the signs of the zodiac and phases of the moon.

She asked if Id ever been asked such a thing and I had to allow as how I hadnt. However, that didnt stop me from offering my opinion, based on The System, on the subject.

Since her friend (or relative) was looking to make a change in her employment situation then I would suggest taking the test during the period like we have ahead of us, March 20-28.

She called last week to report the test had been taken and the friend had done better on it than she had on any previous test!

Believe it or dont, thats what happened!

Spring Gardens

Heres the list of crops that enjoy cool even cold weather and soil temperatures. They can withstand frosts, freezes even some snow.

Now: snow peas, spinach, onion sets, radishes, rhubarb (crowns), rutabaga, and turnips, Irish potatoes

Beginning Monday: onion seeds, parsley, and parsnips

After March 25: leaf lettuce, Bibb lettuce plants, head lettuce plants, and onion plants

This information comes from Home Vegetable Gardening in Kentucky, published by the University of Kentuckys Cooperative Extension Service.

If you have questions, dont hesitate to call me here at the newspaper (227-4556), at home (223-8422), or e-mail me at pcase@state-journal.com.

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