Planting By The SignsHere’s December’s information about the phases of the moon and signs of the zodiac.

This information can be used for indoor planting or in a greenhouse. And please note that December features a trio of Ember Days on Dec. 19, 21, 22. No matter the phase or sign, DO NOT PLANT ON THESE DAYS.

       General Tips for dark- and light-moon activities are below.

The moon

      Like the last several months, December begins – and ends - with the dark moon in force. The dark moon rules until the new moon – or no moon visible in the sky – arrives at 2:20 a.m. EDT on Dec. 7. The light moon is then in force until the full – or dark moon - returns at 12:49 p.m. on Dec. 22. Dark moon continues until the new – or light – moon comes back into force early in January 2019.

      When the full - or dark - moon is ruling, if you are planting in your greenhouse, plant only those veggies that produce below the ground. When the light moon is in force, plant those that produce above the ground.

      Ideally, check the signs and plant when one of the fertile signs rules. Don’t plant when the killing signs Aries or Leo are in force – and the Ember Days in December - no matter the moon’s phase!

The signs

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

      If you can only utilize one aspect of this system for planting – moon’s phases or zodiac signs – I would suggest following the phases. December begins with a flowering sign in force. So that’s where we will begin, too.

     Flowering days: Libra (the reins), rules Dec. 1-2, 28-29; and Virgo (the bowels) is up for Dec. 26-27. There are six flowering days in December.

        Fertile days: These are the most fertile signs in the zodiac. Here’s the breakdown as they occur this month and the phase of the moon which is in force.

      Scorpio (the secrets), Dec. 3-4, 30-31, all dark moon; Pisces (the feet), Dec. 13-14, light moon; Taurus (the neck) rules Dec. 18-19, light moon; and Cancer (the breast) Dec. 22-23, dark moon.

      There are 10 days this month ruled by the most fertile signs: Scorpio, Pisces Taurus and Cancer.

     So-so days: These aren’t particularly fertile nor destructive, just so-so. Sagittarius (the thighs), Dec. 5-7; Capricorn (the knees), Dec. 8-9; and Aquarius (the legs), Dec. 10-12. There are eight days again this month ruled by the so-so signs.

      For the first time in several months we have two perfect days for making changes, Dec. 5-6. See more about that below.

     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, cleaning up your garden for winter if you haven’t done that yet — anything but planting.

      Here’s when they rule this month: Aries (the head), Dec. 15-17; Leo (the heart) Dec. 24-25. There are five killing days this month – not counting the Ember Days.

     Gemini days: Gemini (the arms) rules Dec. 20-21, with the light moon in force. If we have two Gemini days like these in January – and you can find that out by visiting my Facebook page, Planting by the Signs since the River Times won’t publish in January – then you might consider planting some snow peas if your garden is ready and you are a pea fan.

      Ember Days: As I mentioned above, December features three Ember Days on the Dec. 19, 21-22. These are super killing days – no planting or dealing with things you want thrive.

General tips

     Making changes: If you have changes to make like stopping smoking, starting a diet or exercise program, weaning small children or animals, scheduling elective surgery – anything that requires making a change – the best time for that is when the moon is in the dark phase and the signs are going out of the body beyond anything that functions.

      As I mentioned earlier in the column, there are two perfect days this month for the first time in several months. Those days are Dec. 5-6 with the moon in the dark phase and the so-so sign Sagittarius (the thighs) ruling.

      We will be having more and more perfect days in the months ahead.

     Pouring gravel: If you have gravel to pour on a drive or road on your farm, do that when the light moon rules, which is Dec. 7-21.