Planting by the Signs: April at a glance

By Philip Case, Published:

Oh neighbors, while it may well be snowing (as it was most of Tuesday) as you’re reading this, it’s official: Spring is here and it’s time for gardening.

In addition to the usual information on planting by the phases of the moon and signs of the zodiac, I’ve included again a list of veggies that love cool weather and growing as the days continue to lengthen and the soil slowly warms.

Spring gardens can be challenging but they can also be rewarding. Now, an overview of the month of April according to the phases of the moon and signs of the zodiac.


This week’s phases, signs

For those of you who don’t want to wade through the April overview for this week’s information, here it is:

The moon moves — or moved depending on when you are reading this — to the light phase at 2:45 p.m. today. It will remain there until April 15. This is a time to plant above-ground producers, and if that’s in an unprotected outside garden make sure the veggie(s) is/are on the list below for cool-weather crops.

The sign today and Monday is in Aries (the head). It doesn’t matter what list a veggie or anything else is on, you don’t want to plant on these killing days — anything but planting.

Things get better quickly, however, as the sign moves to Taurus (the neck) Tuesday and Wednesday. Taurus is a very fertile sign and the moon is in the light phase.

Gemini (the arms) comes to rule Thursday through Saturday. Gemini is the bean sign and but its way too early for beans since they aren’t frost and/or freeze resistant. You might try some peas if you have the space, the inclination and your ground is ready.

Cancer (the breast) is up for next Sunday and Monday, April 6-7. Cancer is another of the very fertile signs for any above-ground producer from the list below.

The moon

The month begins with the new (light) moon in force and it continues to rule until the full moon at 3:42 a.m. April 15, Tax Day.

The dark (full) moon will then be in force most of that day and until the next new (light) moon at 2:14 a.m. April 29 that continues to rule until 3:16 p.m. May 14.

When the new — or light — moon rules, only light-moon activities. When the full — or dark  — moon rules, proceed only with dark-moon activities. 

Check “General Tips” for dark- and light-moon activities.

Light moon: Though April 14, returning April 29, 2:14 a.m.

Dark moon: All but four hours of April 15 through April 28.

The signs

Remember: Check to see if the moon is in the light or dark phase (information above) before proceeding with planting or other activities, indoors or out.

Fertile signs: the most fertile signs in the zodiac rule these days: Taurus (the neck), April 1-2 and 29-30; Cancer (the breast), April 6-7; Scorpio (the secrets), April 16-17; and Pisces (feet), April 24-25. There are 10 days again this month, ruled by the fertile signs —Taurus, Cancer, Scorpio and Pisces.

Killing signs: No planting, transplanting, or dealing with things you want to thrive should occur on these days. Reserve them for cultivating, cleaning out fencerows — anything but planting: Leo (the heart), April 8-10; and Aries (the head), April 26-28. There are six killing days this month, up from four in February.

So-so days: These aren’t particularly fertile nor destructive, just so-so: Sagittarius (the thighs), April 18-19; Capricorn (the knees), April 20-21; and Aquarius (the legs), April 22-23. There are six days this month ruled by the so-so signs, April 18-23.

Flowering days: These are “bloom days” and well suited for planting flowers. There are five bloom days this month: Virgo (the bowels), April 11-12 and Libra (the reins), April 13-15.

Gemini days: Gemini rules the arms and is in force April 3-5. While we are still a month out from bean planting, you can still plant peas. However, peas love cooler weather so I wouldn’t wait too much longer since hopefully it will be getting warmer soon.

What to plant now

Here are veggies you can safely plant now if — and only if — your ground is dry. And there are a lot of them!

According to Home Gardening in Kentucky you can plant: asparagus, Bibb lettuce plants, beets, cabbage, carrots, chard, collards, head lettuce, kale, kohlrabi, leaf lettuce, onion sets and seeds, onion plants, parsley, parsnips, Irish potatoes, radishes, rhubarb, rutabaga, snow peas, spinach and turnips.

Also in April, the book says sweet corn April 20 and bush beans April 25. I wouldn’t because neither is frost resistant but I’m just telling you what the book says.

Everything else in the garden can’t be planted until May when the danger of frost is over — hopefully.

General tips

Again, here are a few general tips for activities other than planting:

  • If you have gravel to pour on a drive or roadway, do that in the light of the moon (through April 14 and from April 29 through May 13) so the gravel won’t sink. Same applies for stones on a garden path: Place them when the moon is in the light phase so they don’t sink.
  • If you’re setting fence posts, do that in the light of the moon so the posts don’t sink.
  • If you’re putting on a new shingle roof, do that when the moon’s in the dark phase so that the shingles stick down and don’t curl up on the ends. While this originally applied to cedar shakes, it is nonetheless applicable to modern shingles since the idea is for them to stick down, too, to keep the nasties outside!
  • If you have changes to make like stopping smoking, starting a diet or exercise program, weaning small animals or children, scheduling elective surgery — anything that requires a change — here’s the formula: The moon in the dark phase and the signs are going out of the body, past anything that “functions” so that means thighs, knees, legs and feet — Sagittarius through Pisces.

We have eight full days again this month perfectly suited, April 18-25. On these days the moon will be in the dark phase and the sign in Sagittarius (the thighs), Capricorn (knees), Aquarius (legs) and Pisces (feet) for two days each. All are signs ruling something that doesn’t function.

If you have elective surgery to schedule, there’s time and if you have changes to make there’s plenty of time to get yourself all psyched up to begin on the 18th, at least before the 26th.

How to be in touch

Here’s how to be in touch, get instant information, ask questions, make comments or visit a platform for discussion.

  • Email or
  • Call or text 502-682-5995 or call The State Journal, 502-227-4556.
  • My Twitter account is @plantingbysigns. You can also visit
  • My Facebook is “Planting By Signs” and it’s devoted to general gardening with an emphasis on utilizing the phases of the moon and signs of the zodiac.

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