What is a Pink Moon?

POLOKWANE – April’s full moon, the Pink Moon, heralds the appearance of moss pink, or wild ground phlox—one of the first spring flowers in the northern hemisphere. It is also known as the Sprouting Grass Moon, the Egg Moon, and the Fish Moon. And no, it is not pink or salmon coloured.

Colonial Americans picked up the various names from the local Native Americans, as time was not recorded by using the months of the Julian or Gregorian calendar. Many tribes kept track of time by observing the seasons and lunar months, although there was much variability.

Different names popped up in different areas and they usually described some activity that occurred during the time the moon appeared, such as the appearance of the first pink ground phlox flowers.

In the southern hemisphere, the Pink Moon got its name from the onset of pinkish cheeks on locals, signalling the approach of colder weather.

The Pink Moon also holds much reverence in religion, as the sighting of the full moon in April signifies the close of Lent. Easter Sunday then falls on the first Sunday after the sighting of the moon. It also alludes to the start of the Jewish Passover period and Hindu Hanuman Festival.

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Nelie Erasmus

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