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Archive for July, 2013

The Astrological Gardener

As Above, So Below

By Dikki-Jo Mullen

Whether it is just having a few plants in the window of an apartment in the city or acres of gardens in the country, nurturing plants and connecting with the Earth afresh has become a favorite 21st century hobby. Gardening offers peace and pleasure to people of all ages during these often hectic and tension filled times. It is easy to feel bewildered by the intriguing array of choices when visiting a greenhouse to select plants. Geraniums might do well for one friend, while another favors ferns or begonias. Should you start a cactus garden or splurge on a bonsai tree? Zodiacal rulerships for plants, both medicinal and ornamental, have been a part of astrological traditions for centuries. Your own birth sign (the familiar Sun sign) is a wonderful place to begin when designing a garden to bring a wholesome, earthy peace into your life. By analyzing which plants are compatible with your nature, you can assemble a really outstanding collection of greenery, whether the space available for the project is large or small.

Aries

As a fire sign, you must remember to water your plants regularly. Also they can wither if you give them too much sunlight. You will enjoy the extra physical activity that gardening requires. Experiment with a cactus garden combined with a candle or rock garden. For an indoor garden, using a grow light can work well. Pepper plants, tulips, mustard, radishes, poppies, bay trees and aloes are plants you can have success with.

Taurus

Plants respond almost magically to your touch. Some of the most gifted master gardeners are Taureans. Your garden could even produce enough surplus to sell as a supplement your income. You have the legendary green thumb and can grow almost anything, but some especially good choices include corn, wheat, columbine, myrtle, spinach, iris, daisies and forget-me-nots. Look into an edible landscape that is also visually pleasing.

Gemini

Unless your natal chart has some earth and water sign emphasis, you might be challenged in getting plants to thrive. Your patience can wear thin with the slow pace of gardening and the time consuming effort it takes. If it is just too much for you, try assembling silk arrangements or dried flowers accented with feathers. Plants that can grow well for you include woodbine, meadow sweet, birch trees, yarrow, tansy, lilacs and roses. Planting a butterfly garden can bring novelty and happiness your way, as butterflies have a link to your birth sign.

Cancer

You love swamps and lush water plants. Take care not to over water or over fertilize your garden. Try all types of lilies (water lily, lily of the valley, tiger lily, etc.), water plants of all kinds, white roses, weeping willow trees (the long strings of leaves provide a nice veil to hide behind, when you want to dream or read). Also mushrooms, pumpkins and melons will flourish for you. Take along a slip from a plant that grew in a home from your past when moving to a new dwelling, you are sentimental about your plants.

Leo

For you it is an exotic and dramatic garden, with splashes of brilliant color. Do not crowd too many plants into a small space though and be sure to water them enough. Sunflowers, marigolds, mint, parsley, fennel, citrus trees, dill, olive trees and daffodils are excellent choices for your garden. You would enjoy an elevated garden, placed to attract attention on a small hill or pedestal. You would like to add beautiful hanging baskets, wind chimes or a decorative flag or windsock too.

Virgo

As an Earth sign, you have a natural aptitude for horticulture. Study medicinal herbs and experiment with the goal of making your own home remedies. Assembling herbal tea blends, poultices, etc. to enhance health will appeal to you. Popular table vegetables such as carrots, squash, celery, lettuce will also thrive for you. Valerian, lavender and chicory are other excellent choices. You might want to try beekeeping in conjunction with gardening.

Libra

You treasure plants for their beauty, fragrance and other aesthetic qualities. The beauty of a formal garden would delight you. If you have the time and space, try to copy a floral clock, maze or rose garden from historical references. Beautifully kept parks will draw you, you will enjoy wandering through them as a mild form of exercise. Plants to select for your apartment or small patio garden include roses, thyme, violets, pansies, apricot or chestnut trees, bleeding hearts, strawberries, primroses and cowslips.

Scorpio

Your plants tend to be hardy survivors, weathering freezes and droughts well. Gardens in your care are very fertile too and you can have extra produce to sell or offer to friends. Try bonsai gardening. The twisted and mysterious dwarf trees harmonize with Scorpio. Other great choices include orchids, geraniums, lobelia, beans, magnolia, lichens, tomatoes, blackthorn and witch hazel trees.

Sagittarius

You seldom think of purchasing plants, they seem to find you; perhaps as a gift from a friend or picked up as an afterthought at the supermarket. Sturdy greenery that will flourish independent of personal attention will be your favorite. You would like to have vines trailing over the door or even covering the whole house, plants on the front porch and foreign or exotic plants will attract you too. Some good choices are linden trees, hyssop, ginseng, cinnamon trees, dandelions, chervil and jasmine. Include plants to offer your pets. How about growing some catnip for a favorite feline or grass for a dog to chew?

Capricorn

Massive and gnarled trees, especially pines and oaks, ravaged and marked by time and the seasons, will attract you. Purchase a live Christmas tree in a container to plant outdoors after the holiday is over. You would enjoy visiting a stand of virgin timber, perhaps a redwood forest in the Western United States, or historic forests in Europe. Plants made famous in stories, poems and songs attract you too. Consider holly, ivy, thistles, flax, sienna, cypress, sage and wintergreen for your garden.

Aquarius

Exotic, mutated or grafted plants are linked to your sign. Purchase a batch of x-rayed seeds to plant, you will be thrilled by their eccentric growth and appearance. Imported and unusual plants will thrive for you, perhaps defying their usual limits regarding climate. If anyone can grow a magnolia in Minneapolis, a coconut palm in Chicago or a birch tree in Key West, its you. Air plants of all kinds, spikenard, dragonwort, rowan tree, crocus and begonias are all good choices for your garden.

Pisces

You have an empathy with fragile, fussy plants which require constant care. A fountain, fish pond or other water features as a center piece for your garden and statues of fairies, angels or St. Francis to invoke a spiritual and mystical presence would also appeal. You can often bring nearly dead plants back to life by talking to them, a gift you share with gardeners born under Scorpio, your fellow water sign. Rubber trees, orchids, African violets, wildflowers in general, mosses, gardenias, mimosa, frangipani, hops and ferns should all do well for you. So will all night blooming plants. Consider planting an all white moon garden to wander in after sunset.

The touch of the wind for pardon, the kiss of the Sun for mirth,

We are nearer God’s heart in a garden than in anyplace else on Earth.

(a traditional garden poem)

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The Moon is New in Cancer today, July 8, 2013. Here is a poem, written as I walked back from the beach. There is a strong water sign emphasis right now and the magical voices of of the waves blur and whisper away the outer world. The Moon is in its ruling sign and is trine ¬†Neptune in Pisces, also in its ruling sign. Both are trine Saturn in Scorpio, which is in mutual reception with Pluto (Scorpio’s ruler). It’s time to heed the siren songs of the mer- people and sea serpents. So many water sign placements are in their ruling signs!

Beach shells

When these white and rose
shells
were
in
sandy tide pools and
netted in seaweed

wave-tumbled
tossed by salty spray

they glowed
moon light silver,
glinted with sun crystals
on their speckled
tops.

Spilled on the
sand
they were
damp sea jewels
wave-turquoise
decorated by foam

Now
the gray shells
lie
dead and grainy.

Why did I ever bring them home
and not leave them alone?

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Retrograde Mercury in Cancer during July, 2013 brought this long hidden poem to light. Mercury relates to information exchange, the retrograde suggests reverie and taking the round about route to a destination. The sign of Cancer relates to memories, mother figures and heritage. Elayne, my beloved mother, must have written the poem about 1970, she burnt it in driftwood and it surfaced mysteriously in her longtime home in Indialantic, as the 11th anniversary of her passing nears. Perhaps, across time and space, it brings a message of peace and comfort to offer in today’s world? Mercury is making a long transit through Cancer this summer of 2013, spanning May 31 – August 8. Mercury is retrograde June 27- July 20.

Lord

Make frightened folks feel no stress

Make lonely folks feel it less

Make someone happy just once in a while

Make childrens’ faces at least with a smile

Make me hear the creak in the worlds rocking chair

When my neighbor has trouble make me offer to share

For when I’ll be alone, frightened and old

The same familiar story eternally is told.

By Elayne Mullen of Antigo, Wisconsin

January 29, 1919 – July 23, 2002

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