Flower Moon: May’s full moon6 min read
Originally written in May 2021, updated 2023
As we already know, the full Moon names come from a number of places, including Native American, Colonial American, and European sources.
May’s Flower Moon name should be no surprise, because flowers spring forth in abundance this month.
Its name has been attributed to Algonquin peoples, but also May’s Moon other names tend to speak to the arrival of spring and all that it entails.
The Cree names “Budding Moon” and “Leaf Budding Moon” celebrate the awakening of local flora, which really begin to leaf out now in many areas and, similarly, “Planting Moon” (Dakota, Lakota) marks the time when seeds should be started for the farming season ahead.
The activities of animals marked spring’s arrival, too, which is highlighted by the names “Egg Laying Moon” and “Frog Moon”, as well as the Oglala term “Moon of the Shedding Ponies”. Other names include the Corn Planting Moon and the Milk Moon, from the Old English Rimilcemona which means Month of Three Milkings, when cows were milked three times a day.
All names indicate that warmer weather is on the way.
In any case, once April’s rains and winds have subsided, the sun begins to warm up the earth and we’re able to get the gardens planted.
Not by chance, May is the month in which we begin to sow our crops, but this is also a fiery month, full of lust and passion.
It’s sometimes called also the month of the Hare Moon, and we all know what hares are busy doing in the spring. Celebrate once the sun goes down with a big bonfire.
As usual, your May might not see the same weather as other people’s, because your place depends on a number of factors.
Either way, according to popular folklore, this is a good time to work on magic related to careers and jobs.
Thinking about switching to a new position, or perhaps trying a new field altogether? Want to take a class or get your degree? Take the seeds you’ve planted last month, and allow them to bloom and grow in your favor.
If you want to bring fertility into your life, this is a great time to do magical workings also related to conception and fruitfulness.
Gemstones such as ruby, garnet, amber, and Apache tear are associated with fertility, and May itself is often a time of great fertility.
Colors like red, orange, and yellow represent the sun as it draws nearer to the earth, warming the gardens and the soil, while trees like the hawthorn and rowan are tied deeply to magic and witchcraft in many folkloric traditions.
Gods and goddesses like Kali, Priapus, Cernunnos, and Flora are all represented at this time of year, as they are associated with the blooming gardens, the greening forest, and the crops that begin to grow in the fields.
Herbs, such as members of the mint family, and spices like cinnamon, are great to use during the Beltane season that is, after all, a fire festival, an element deeply connected to Beltane.
Do you remember this tradition?
The Bale fire, or Bel fire, is a tradition that goes back a long time, and a bonfire lit at Beltane is said to bring about both protection and prosperity.
Whatever your purpose is, do some fire divination this month to help guide you on your way, in a time in which we need to plant the seeds for later success:
for instance, begin tending your garden, or planting seeds in containers, and take some time to cultivate each of your herbs, flowers, and plants.
Remember that May is also the season of Beltane.
If you want to bring fertility into your life, think about planting tubers, such as yams, which are believed to increase lust and fertility. In some West African nations, the white yam has been linked to high birth rates, particularly that of twins and other multiples.
You can also plant beans, squash and corn in the arrangement that Native Americans call Three Sisters: in addition to being a self-sustaining ecosystem, in which each plant helps the others, the planting of this trio is associated with the concept of happy families, abundance, and community.
In 2023, May’s full Flower Moon reaches peak illumination at 1:36 P.M. (EDT) on Friday, May 5, but It will be below the horizon at this time, so plan to go outdoors on the nights of the 4th and the 5th to get the best view of the bright full Flower Moon!
IN 2022: May’s full Moon reaches its peak on May 15-16, at 12:15 A.M. (EDT) on Monday, May 16. This means that it will reach its peak on the night of Sunday, May 15, in more western time zones. Plus, this full Moon will be a supermoon and coincide with a total lunar eclipse for most of North America.
May’s full Moon is the first supermoon of this year!
A supermoon is most commonly defined as any full Moon that occurs when the Moon is at at least 90% of perigee, the point in the Moon’s orbit where it is closest to Earth. In 2022, there will be four supermoons.
This month’s full Moon also coincides with a total lunar eclipse! A lunar eclipse occurs when Earth stands directly between the Moon and the Sun, which results in Earth casting its shadow on the Moon. During a total lunar eclipse, the Moon is fully obscured by Earth’s shadow, giving the Moon a reddish hue. This phenomenon is where the term “blood moon” comes from.
This total lunar eclipse occurs in the late night hours of May 15 into May 16 and will be visible for stargazers in most of North America, all of South America, Western Africa, and parts of Western Europe. From the Pacific Northwest into British Columbia, as well as in southern Alaska, a partial lunar eclipse will be be visible.
IN 2021: May 26, 2021, brings a total eclipse of the Moon and some folks are calling it a “Blood Moon”.
Don’t get your hopes up too high for this one, though, because this total lunar eclipse will only be visible in western North America, western South America, eastern Asia, and Oceania.
The full Moon of May is also this year’s closest, biggest, and brightest Moon: a so-called supermoon.
A total eclipse of the Moon is sometimes called a “Blood Moon” because the Moon turns reddish when it’s completely submerged in the Earth’s shadow.
Of course there are lot of curious theories about a “Blood Moon.” Back in 2014–2015, there was a series of four consecutive total lunar eclipses and the media hyped end-of-the-world prophesies.
Of course, the world did not end.
During a lunar eclipse, the Earth is passing between the Sun and the Moon, blocking the Sun’s rays. However, the Moon isn’t completely dark and what we see from Earth is the Moon slowly darkening and changing color over a few hours to an orange-red, similar to a sunset.
In any case, “Blood Moon” is not a technical term used in astronomy, but a popular phrase that simply refers to a total lunar eclipse. Yep, that’s it!
Images from web – Google Research