Planting by the Signs: Moon in dark phase, so-so signs end today

By Philip Case Published:


For all of you planting your garden by the phases of the moon and signs of the zodiac, here’s the information for the week ahead - and more.

The moon

The moon is in the dark phase now and will remain there until 11:02  a.m.  EDT  June 19. Through June 18, plant only those veggies that produce beneath the ground, preferably in a fertile sign but definitely NOT in a killing one!

The light moon for above-ground producers comes to rule just after 11 a.m. on the 19th and continues in force until July 3.

Again: when the light moon is in force proceed with only light-moon activities and planting above-ground producing veggies. Conversely, when the dark moon is in force it’s below-ground producers.

The signs

According to the signs of the zodiac, our series of so-so signs ends today with the sign in Aquarius (the legs). Remember these signs aren’t impressively good but they aren’t bad either, just so-so.

Outstanding days for planting, still with the moon in the dark phase, are Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday when the sign moves to Pisces (the feet), one of the four most fertile signs.

All planting should cease, however, on Thursday and Friday when the sign moves to Aries (the head), one of the two killing signs. Reserve these days for killing, deadening – any activity but planting.

Outstanding planting returns Saturday and next Sunday, June 16-17, when Taurus (the neck) comes into force. This is another of the most outstandingly productive signs.

Then come a pair of bean days with Gemini  (the arms) in force on June 18-19. The 18th is still under the influence of the dark moon, but if you want until after lunch on the 19th, you can put out some beans with the light moon in force and the greatest sign in the world in force for beans – Gemini.

Making changes

If you have changes to make like stopping smoking, starting a diet or exercise program, weaning small animals or children – anything that requires a change – here’s the formula: The moon in the dark phase and the signs going out of the body, past anything that “functions” so that means thighs, knees, legs and feet – Sagittarius through Pisces.

You have through next Wednesday, so if you have changes to make then have at it! To show you I practice what I preach here, I scheduled some needed dental work on Monday: moon in the dark phase, sign in Pisces (the feet)! You just can’t beat that.

Late gardens

Here in Kentucky, we have relatively small window of opportunity to plant many of those hot-weather loving veggies and expect them to germinate, grow and produce something for us to harvest. If you consider that three months from today we will be celebrating the Sunday AFTER Labor Day we see time moves on quickly.

Our unprotected planting for hot-weather lovers, depending on days to maturity, runs from about Mother’s Day until the third or fourth week of June – six or so really good weeks, which should be plenty of time.  After that, with summer just having officially begun, we have to start looking at the other end of the season when the days are growing shorter and the ground is cooling.

All that to say, even if you haven’t done the first thing you still have plenty of time to do some planting of anything that loves hot weather, but there’s beginning to be just that bit of urgency about it.

As I’ve written in this space before – about every year,  I believe – one of the best gardens I have ever had wasn’t started until June 21. And when you consider the late garden, there are many advantages: the soil temperature is already warm, the craziness of spring in Kentucky (which really wasn’t too crazy this year) is over, and it’s pleasant to get out and work the ground.

Now, just as long as we don’t stumble into drought conditions like the po’ folks in Western Kentucky.

Just remember the weeds will grow as fast – sometimes faster – than your plants so be ready to dig in and do battle. Kim talks about methods for weed control  in her column, so have a  look  at that on page C4.

Before you plant anything, check the “days to maturity” on the seed packet or spike in the peat pot. If, like bush beans for instance, it says “50 days” then you’re looking at early August. Ninety days takes you until after Labor Day for tomatoes, which is still fine because chances are it will still be hot.

Just got  those veggies with the longer times until maturity in the ground before the end of the month, preferably by the third week of this month.

So, plant away! There’s still plenty of time and I think the advantages of the late garden far outweigh any risks.

How to be in touch

>E-mail or

>Call or text (502) 682-5995 or call The State Journal at (502) 227-4556.

>My Twitter account is @plantingbysigns

νFor Facebook just type in and you’ll go to the site. Please note there is no “the” in the Facebook address. You do not have to be a member of Facebook and this site is dedicated just to planting by the phases of the moon and signs of the zodiac, not all that other information folks choose to share on Facebook.


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