CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (WBOY) — It’s a new month, which means the next named full moon is just around the corner. For June, the Strawberry Moon will be lighting up the night skies of stargazers nationwide. Here’s everything you need to know.
According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the Strawberry Moon can be seen at its peak on Saturday, June 3 just after sunset. If you look just southeast as the sun heads behind the horizon, you should be able to see the Strawberry Moon in its large golden form. It will reach peak illumination in north central West Virginia at 11:43 p.m. EST.
So why is it called the Strawberry Moon? Well, according to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the name comes from a variety of sources, most notably Native American, Colonial American and European origins. As with the previous moons we’ve covered, the Strawberry Moon was named as a way of tracking the seasons rather than just funny names.
Contrary to what you might think, the Strawberry Moon doesn’t get its name from the reddish color that you may see it with near the horizon. Rather, the nickname stems from the fact that its the last full moon of the spring season, representing the peak time for strawberry harvesting and their peak ripeness. We get this term mainly from Native American Algonquian tribes, as well as the Ojibwe, Dakota and Lakota peoples who have used the moon to mark the berry’s ripening.
Other similar origins can be tied to the Haida people who refer to the June full moon as the “Berry Ripen Moon” to signify the blooming of flowers and the ripening of fruit.
Alternate names for the moon have also sprung up in various cultures, including:
- Blooming Moon (Anishinaabe): Refers to the flowering season.
- Green Corn Moon (Cherokee) and Hoer Moon (Western Abenaki): Refers to the need to tend to young crops.
- Birth Moon (Tlingit): Refers to the birthing of certain animals in the Pacific Northwest where these people reside.
- Honey Moon and Mead Moon (Europan): Refers to June traditionally being a month of marriage which could also refer to the term “honeymoon.”
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