The Forbidden Melachos 2


A. What items are forbidden to be planted during Shemitah?

It is forbidden to plant any produce during Shemitah. This includes:[1]

  • Fruits
  • Vegetables
  • Non-fruit baring trees[2]
  • Roses
  • Flowers
  • Grass


B. May one ask a gentile to plant for oneself?[3]

It is forbidden to ask a gentile to plant for oneself during Shemitah.


May one plant flowers during Shemitah?

No. It is forbidden to plant anything during Shemitah including flowers and other non fruit bearing plants.


May one throw seeds on an earth ground during Shemitah?

Some Poskim[4] avoided doing so during the Shemitah year.


Watering plants

May one water his garden during Shemitah?

One may water it to prevent damage or loss towards the garden.[5] One may not do so for its continued growth and development.


May one wash his hands over plants and grass?

No. However some are lenient in this regard.


May one water plants or flowers that grew during Shemitah?[6]

No. It is forbidden to do so even for the sake of preventing loss.


May one allow his air conditioner water valve drip onto grass?

Yes. However some[7] are stringent in this matter.


May one drip dry his laundry over the grass?

Some Poskim[8] are lenient in this matter.


May one mop water from his floor onto his garden?

No. However if a plant killing agent is being used as floor detergent then one may mop the water into the garden.


May one urinate on plants or grass?



[1] Gra”ch Naah

[2] Rambam 1/5

[3] Toras Hashemitah 2/1

[4] Chazon Ish brought in Derech Emunah 1/18

[5] Mabit 4/64; Toras Hashemitah 4/27

[6] Gra”ch Naah

[7] Derech Emuna 1.18

[8] Koveitz Mibeis Levi 5 1994

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