FRUIT DAY is a term used by those Biodynamic growers following a concept popularized by German market gardener Maria Thun (1922-2012). Thun held that when the Moon passes in front of those star constellations relating to the “fire signs”, namely Ram, Archer and Lion, heat and dryness impulses favour fruit and seed formation, and crop ripeness, flavour and health. She classified fruit plants as those that produce edible fruits – meaning both fruit and fruiting vegetables like beans, cucumber, courgettes, peas, peppers, pumpkins, tomatoes – and advised sowing and harvesting them on Fruit Days (MT: 2003, p.135).
FRUIT-SEED DAYS Maria Thun saw days when the Moon is in Lion as being especially favourable for the sowing of plants whose seeds would be saved, thus fostering enhanced power of crop regeneration when these were sown. She called these Fruit-Seed days.
WORKING TO FRUIT DAYS During the 27.3 days the sidereal moon takes to orbit Earth it spends a week or so in front of one of those fruit/fire constellations, in three separate periods. It spends most time in front of Lion (over two and a half days on average) and Archer (nearly two and a half). Lion (brightest star: Regulus or ‘little king’) and Archer (brightest star: Rukbat) are among the largest of the twelve constellations along the zodiac, fourth and fifth biggest respectively. In antiquity Archer represented a centaur (half-man, half-horse) aiming its bow at the neighbouring constellation of Scorpion which bit Orion. Contemporary star-gazers however see Sagittarius as resembling a tea-pot. In contrast Ram is one of the smallest constellations (tenth smallest) and one of the faintest too. The moon spends less than two days in front of it. And because the moon orbits the earth in an ellipse, its time in front of any constellation will be shorter at perigee (moon’s closest point to earth) and longer at apogee (moon’s farthest point from earth).
EXAMPLES OF FRUIT CROPS Apples. Apricots. Aubergine. Blackberries, Blackcurrants. Blueberries. Broad beans. Cape goosberries. Cherries. Chillies. Citrus fruits. Courgette. Cranberries. Cucumbers. Damsons. Eggplant. Figs. French beans. Gages. Gherkins. Gooseberries. Grains. Grapes. Lima beans. Marrows. Melon. Nectarines. Okra. Oil-bearing fruits. Peaches. Pears. Peas. Peppers. Plums. Red currants. Runner beans. Soya beans. Squash. Summer squash. Strawberries. Sweetcorn. Tomatillos. Tomatoes. Wheat. White currants. Wine grapes. Winter squashes. Zucchini.
SEED-SOWING IN FRUIT-SEED PERIODS
NON-ENGLISH LANGUAGE TERMS – ARCHER le Sagittaire (French); Saggittario (Italian); Sagitario (Spanish). FRUIT DAYS les jours fruits (French); i giorni frutto (Italian). LION le lion (French); leone (Italian); Leo (Spanish). RAM le bélier (French); Ariete (Italian); Aries (Spanish).
Biodynamic Gardening (Dorling Kindersley, 2015).
Biodynamic Wine (Infinite Ideas, 2016).