Planting by the Stars - Worked Examples

More even than in any of the other sections of I would like to acknowledge the assistance of Nick Kollerstom here. Not only has he organised some of these experiments, but he has written them up, including their analysis, especially for this site. So working from a simple case towards a more detailed project ...

... this file [MS Excel - 20 Kb] shows the bare bones data of Reg Muntz's trials with beans in Pulborough UK in 1975. The data says when the trials were undertaken, what weight of crop emerged split between the beans themselves and the rest of the plant.

A further stage is shown here [MS Excel - 60 Kb] when examining Maria Thun's publicly published results. 3 years of potato yields (grata) are shown from 1963 - 1965 with graphical representations including a 'trend line' to show a correction of individual results. This corrects for seasonal yield so that results collected over a longer period can be used in one analysis.

Hartmut Spiess tried to confirm Maria Thun's hypothesis in his mammoth work over several years and concluded that there was an insignificant yield benefit. Kollerstrom used his different analysis formula (moving averages rather than parabolic seasonal trends) and discovered even in Spiess' own results a 7 - 8% advantage using the Thun elements. (The data is given in Spiess 'Chronobiologische...' 1994 Vol 2, p225 (1978), 235 (1979) and 244 (1980).) This file [MS Excel 56 Kb] shows Spiess' data over three years with carrots. The data is supplemented with a work-sheet of number-crunching formulations showing Nick Kollerstrom's working if you are literate in basic maths and spreadsheet work. The graphical result is shown with an interesting X axis - that of 120 degrees; the gross yields are corrected for the seasonal trend to give an adjusted average yield of zero. The variation from this average is plotted against the 120 degrees of one set of element-signs and a sine wave drawn to show the variation of yield against the Moon's zodiac-host. Of interest is that these figures were re-evaluated by Nick Kollerstrom using the biodynamic zodiac divisions and the exact same results emerged.

The next three examples are those which resulted from Kollerstrom's collaboration with Colin Bishop in the 1970's as they investigated this strange hypothesis at Bishop's allotments in Cardiff, Wales. The first file [Acrobat pdf - 128 Kb] is a report with raw data and analysis of the 1976 experiments with lettuce. it is self-explanatory if you do download and read it, but the highlights are a rationale for using a sine wave as a representative line, and an indication that not only is the relevant element an assistance but that the opposite sign is a hindrance with neutral intermediaries.

As the next file [Acrobat pdf -108 Kb] says of the 1977 trials - "This year, Mr Bishop sowed every two days or so, but without using any calendar. A keen amateur astrologer, he was perplexed by the way his 1976 trial had seemed to support the sidereal zodiac, rather than the ‘tropical’ one astrologers use. So this year his sowings did not assume any boundary-divisions." Here, it is very clear that the sowings at lunar nodes were extremely unhelpful, and the yield shows that leaf day sowings produced over double that produced from root day sowings! Which producer would not like that information to be consolidated?

In 1978 Kollerstrom and Bishop performed what they called the Ur-experiment. This is an exemplar of chronobiological experimentation and if any of you would like to emulate this and submit the results to Considera, you will find a wonderful reception here. The analysis of this experiment showed a 32% yield increase of the radishes on root days using the sidereal zodiac compared to a 15% yield increase using the biodynamic uneven constellation zodiac - neither of which is to be dismissed! An equally interesting 13% yield increase was seen in the afternoon sowings - sun descending in the sky - but this was integrated into a daily average for the subsequent analysis. The plot of adjusted yield against the 120 degree 'four-element' axis and its best-fit sine wave is particularly seducing. Further (and unique?) analysis is the yield against GMF - Geomagnetic index data - for the day suggesting both a potential new correlate and perhaps an aspect of the mechanism by which the Moon works upon the plants - step forward you PhD students! And one more analysis is the use of the time of day of the sowing against the Moon-rise and Moon-set suggesting a correlation which Nick Kollerstrom uses in his own annual calendar. The data, its analysis and brief write up is available here - 172 Kb [adobe pdf] of sound research and analysis for peer-review and repetition.

Along with Maria Thun's research, this gives a bench-mark of the work that needs to be done and we hope Considera can be instrumental in bringing this about and then bringing it together. These experiments can be improved upon too - questions come up about taste, plant health, subsequent generations of the plants, storage etc etc. Go to it .....