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I live in a very hard clay soil area and routinely time my ground work around softening rains. My friend is brow beating me for wanting to prep new beds and possibly plant today (after yesterday’s rain), citing the Farmer’s Almanac and position of the stars. Do many go by such things?

Zster 8 Apr 11
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1

I tend to aim for almanac guidelines. But I am more tuned in to your issue of how to handle heavy clay. Drainage is key. I subscribe to the school of growing above the clay, a la "no dig" gardening methods.

Two benefits. Your back will thank you, and you prevent the "soup bowl" effect that traps water and potentially drowns plants' roots. You can make formal raised beds, but more easily you can just layer amendments on top of the soil. Numerous no-dig videos exist on you tube.

1

Not since it was all my Grandparents had.....

AnneWimsey Level 9 Apr 11, 2021
2

Years ago I heard of the ancient farming adage "New moon supports beginnings/plantings, full moon supports endings/harvesting." It makes sense to me that throughout time, humans paid attention to the results of how they timed their gardening and results.

1

To deal with hard clay soils, I would recommend one or both of two things: (1) till in diatomaceous earth (gypsum). and /or (2) till in a significant amount of cottonseed hull mulch. After that, just keep mixing in added organic matter.

wordywalt Level 8 Apr 11, 2021
3

Weather will vary little year to year on average according to the lunar calendar, so most people that pay attention to weather cycles will look at the point you are in the lunar cycle to try and predict whether you are too early to plant or not. Again this is only the average and doesn't predict any single planting season. I also look at the long term weather forecast and whether my back hurts or not.

glennlab Level 9 Apr 11, 2021
0

There is a whole village next to ours where the farmers plant and harvest by the phase of the moon, especially beans. It is some German historical method.

Spinliesel Level 8 Apr 11, 2021
0

May I suggest adding a few 50 quart bags of Mirical Grow potting soil to your clay , before you plant anything ?

Cast1es Level 9 Apr 11, 2021

Sure, any pointers are welcome! I do work in a couple types of organic loaded soils and miracle gro. It’s how I get anything to come up! Do you know which products might work best with herbs? I would love better basil and tarragon yields. (:

@Zster I'm sort of in the same spot. I have turned over the clay and added potting mix to it, DE is teeny particles can't it being much help.
If you know someone raIsing cows or horses a half/half mix of their dry manure and yard soil works like magic. Where I shoveled out the horse poop at our house the grass was thick and HUGE.

@K9Kohle789 My bestie has horses and mixes in manure for her garden. Her plants are huge!

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