Event date: 

Wednesday, April 5, 2023 - 7:00pm
Louisville, KY 40204

Masks are strongly encouraged to help actively include immuno-vulnerable friends and those around them. Thanks!


Registration details coming soon!

Register HERE


Pre-registering helps us order enough books for our guests and helps us set up the room for safety and comfort. We will allow pre-registrants to be seated first. No one will be turned away, but please note that seating is limited. Please contact the store ahead of time if you need assistance with mobility or other concerns - we are happy to help!


"To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted."—Ecclesiastes 3:1–2

The Appalachian region is deeply rooted in customs that have been handed down for generations. "Planting by the signs," a practice predicated on the belief that moon phases and astrological signs exert a powerful influence on the growth and well-being of crops, is deemed superstitious by some but has been considered essential to gardeners and farmers for centuries and is still in use today.

Sown in the Stars brings together the collective knowledge of farmers in central and eastern Kentucky about the custom of planting by the signs. Sarah Hall interviews nearly two dozen contemporary Kentuckians who still follow the signs of the moon and stars to guide planting, harvesting, canning and food preservation, butchering, and general farmwork. Hall explores the roots of this system in both astrology and astronomy and the profound connections felt to the stars, moon, planets, and the earth. Revealed in the personal narratives are the diverse interpretations of the practice. Some farmers and gardeners believe that the moon's impact on crop behavior is purely scientific, while others favor a much wider interpretation of the signs and their impact on our lives. Featuring photographs by Meg Wilson, this timely book bridges the past, present, and future by broadening our understanding of this practice and revealing its potential to increase the resiliency of our current agricultural food systems.

Sarah L. Hall is associate professor of agriculture and natural resources at Berea College. Her scholarly articles on the restoration of native forests and grasslands in Kentucky have been published in a wide range of journals, including Restoration Ecology and New ForestsMeg Wilson, a Berea College alum, is a graduate student in art and art history at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Meg's photographs have appeared in many publications and collections, including Appalachian ReckoningAppalachian ReviewTime magazine, Oxford American, and Looking at Appalachia.


Beautifully written and meticulously researched, Sown in the Stars is an important book about the wonders of the natural world, tradition, and science.  Sarah Hall understands the power of oral tradition in sharing this kind of knowledge, providing not only a fascinating read but also a master class in the art of preserving innate storytelling.  It's all made even better by the gorgeous, complex photographs by Meg Wilson. This book will have a place of honor in my gardening library. 

-Silas House, author of Lark Ascending

Sarah Hall has created the consummate book on planting by the signs—those signs that have been arrayed for us by our solar system as it impacts the earth. Twenty-two Kentucky gardeners and farmers join her as they take readers on a captivating journey that examines a plethora of fascinating aspects of these age-old and worldwide practices.

-George Brosi, coeditor of Appalachian Gateway: An Anthology of Contemporary Stories and Poetry

This book explains how gardening and farming by the signs is an Appalachian tradition, with wisdom passed down through oral legends, written records, and general advice. Through its engaging and informative interviews, Sown in the Stars preserves these customs for future generations. With a rich historical and regional grounding, (this book) is a fascinating, pragmatic cosmic resource for biodynamic planting.

-Foreword Reviews

You can get the book on the registration page, but it’s cheaper if you link below because we don’t pay extra service fees. Whatever is more convenient for you, we love to get you your books!


Mobility device access info:

While our store has ramp access to the right of the main entrance, the event space is more easily accessed by entering at Bayly Avenue. Please call the store when you arrive and we will be happy to welcome you via this entrance. This door is next to a loading zone for easy car access, and our parking lot reserved ADA spots are also close to this entrance.


Sown in the Stars: Planting by the Signs By Sarah L. Hall, Meg Wilson (Photographer), Ronni Lundy (Foreword by) Cover Image
By Sarah L. Hall, Meg Wilson (Photographer), Ronni Lundy (Foreword by)
ISBN: 9780813197043
Availability: On Our Shelves in the last 24 hours. Click to see a specific store location's stock.
Published: University Press of Kentucky - April 4th, 2023

Event Category Terms: 

Event Summary: 

Details to follow, stay tuned!