Magnificent May Flowers

May is the fifth month of the year in the Julian and Gregorian Calendars and the third of seven months to have a length of 31 days.

May is a month of spring in the Northern Hemisphere and autumn in the Southern Hemisphere. Therefore, May in the Southern Hemisphere is the seasonal equivalent of November in the Northern Hemisphere and vice versa. Late May typically marks the start of the summer vacation season in the United States and Canada and ends on Labor Day, first Monday of September.


The month May was named for the Greek Goddess Maia, who was identified with the Roman era goddess of fertility, Bona Dea, whose festival was held in May. Conversely, the Roman poet Ovid provides a second etymology, in which he says that the month of May is named for the maiores, Latin for “elders,” and that the following month (June) is named for the iuniores, or “young people” (Fasti VI.88).

Roses to Virgin Mary

Mayovka, in the context of the late Russian Empire, was a picnic in the countryside or in a park in the early days of May, hence the name. Eventually, “mayovka” (specifically, “proletarian mayovka”) came to mean an illegal celebration of May 1 by revolutionary public, typically presented as an innocent picnic.

Special devotions to the Virgin Mary take place in May. See May devotions to the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Eta Aquariids meteor shower appears in May. It is visible from about April 21 to about May 20 each year with peak activity on or around May 6. The Arietids shower from May 22 – July 2, and peaks on June 7. The Virginids also shower at various dates in May.

Ancient Roman observances

Under the calendar of ancient Rome, the festival of Bona Dea fell on May 1, Argei fell on May 14 or May 15, Agonalia fell on May 21, and Ambarvalia on May 29. Floralia was held April 27 during the Republican era, or April 28 on the Julian calendar, and lasted until May 3. Lemuria (festival) fell on 9,11, and 13 May under the Julian calendar. The College of Aesculapius and Hygia celebrated two festivals of Rosalia (festival), one on May 11 and one on May 22. Rosalia was also celebrated at Pergamon on May 24–26. A military Rosalia festival, Rosaliae signorum, also occurred on May 31. Ludi Fabarici was celebrated on May 29 – June 1. Mercury would receive a sacrifice on the Ides of May (May 15). Tubilustrium took place on May 23 as well as in March. These dates do not correspond to the modern Gregorian calendar.

May symbols

  • May’s birthstone is the emerald which is emblematic of love and success.
  • The May birth flower is the Lily of the Valley and the Crataegus monogyna. It is native throughout the cool temperate Northern Hemisphere in Asia, Europe, and in the southern Appalachian Mountains in the United States, but has been naturalized throughout the temperate climactic world.
  • The “mayflower” Epigaea repens is a North American harbinger of May, and the floral emblem of both Nova Scotia and Massachusetts. Its native range extends from Newfoundland south to Florida, west to Kentucky in the southern range, and to Northwest Territories in the north.
  • The zodiac signs for the month of May are Taurus (until May 20) and Gemini (May 21 onwards).

May observances

Month-long observances

United States

Non-Gregorian observances, 2018

(Please note that all Baha’i, Islamic, and Jewish observances begin at the sundown prior to the date listed, and end at sundown of the date in question unless otherwise noted.)

Movable observances, 2018

Last Friday in April to the first Sunday in May: April 27 – May 6

First Tuesday: May 1

First Thursday: May 3

Friday preceding Second Sunday in May: May 4

First Saturday: May 5

First Saturday

First full week: May 6-12

Week of May 12: May 6-12

First Sunday: May 6
Tuesday of First full week: May 8

Saturday closest to May 10:

Second Saturday:

Second Weekend:

Second Sunday:

Third Monday:

Third Friday:

Third Saturday:

Third Sunday:

Monday on or before May 24:

Monday on or before May 25:

Last Monday preceding May 25:

May 24, or the nearest weekday if May 24 falls on a weekend:

Last Thursday:

Saturday closest to May 30:

Last Sunday:

Last Weekend:

Last Monday:

Last Wednesday:

Movable Western Christian observances, 2018 dates

Movable Eastern Christian observances, 2018 dates

Fixed observances in May

Rosa chinensis, the flower symbol of May


May is the fifth month of the year in the Gregorian and its predecessor, the Julian calendar. Named after the Greek goddess, Maia who is also identified Bona Dea (the Roman goddess of fertility), May is the time of spring in the Northern Hemisphere. In the Southern Hemisphere, May is a season of Autumn.

Originally the third month of the year, May later moved to the fifth month when January and February were added to the calendar. It contains 31 days.


Sоmе Nаtіvе Amеrісаn tribes called the Mау full moon Thе Full Flоwеr Mооn, The Cоrn Plаntіng Mооn or thе Mіlk Mооn.

Thе Anglo Sаxоn word fоr Mау wаѕ Trі-Mіlсhі mеаnіng 3 mіlkѕ because thе grаѕѕ hаd become ѕо luѕh and grееn thаt уоu соuld mіlk thе соwѕ thrее tіmеѕ a dау!

Tо mаіntаіn a youthful арреаrаnсе аnd еnhаnсе уоur beauty, wаѕh уоur fасе іn thе dеw уоu collect оn thе morning оf thе fіrѕt of Mау.

Mаrrу іn Mау, уоu’ll ruе thе day.
It іѕ соnѕіdеrеd vеrу bad luсk tо gеt mаrrіеd іn Mау; реrhарѕ because it іѕ соnѕіdеrеd bу ѕоmе tо bе the wеddіng mоnth of thе God аnd Goddess аnd іt wоuld bе vеrу rudе tо upstage them.

Wash a blаnkеt іn Mау, уоu’ll wаѕh a dеаr one away
It is bad luck to wаѕh уоur blаnkеtѕ in May оr tо buу a new broom.

According to оnе ѕuреrѕtіtіоn, сhіldrеn bоrn this mоnth wіll be sickly аll thеіr lіvеѕ аnd саtѕ bоrn this month won’t catch mісе, but mіght bring snakes into the hоuѕе.

Good weather in May іѕ nоt necessarily a gооd thіng.
A wеt Mау brіngѕ a bіg lоаd оf hay.
A соld Mау іѕ kіndlу and fіllѕ thе bаrn finely.
Mist іn Mау аnd heat іn June makes hаrvеѕt соmе rіght soon.
Holidays, Pagan Fеѕtіvаlѕ and Imроrtаnt Dates in Mау
Bеltаnе іѕ сеlеbrаtеd on thе first оf May.
The Bоnа Dea fеѕtіvаl wаѕ сеlеbrаtеd іn аnсіеnt Rоmе оn thе fіrѕt of May.
Mау 1st was аlѕо Vinalia.
Mау 9th іѕ the Roman fеѕtіvаl of Lеmurіа.
May 15th is the bіrthdау оf thе Rоmаn God Mercury or Mercuralia
Mау 21ѕt is thе Rоmаn fеѕtіvаl Vеjоvіѕ.
May 23rd іѕ the Roman festival Rоѕаlіа
Mоthеr’ѕ Day іѕ celebrated on thе second Sunday іn Mау.
Memorial Day is сеlеbrаtеd on thе lаѕt Sundау іn Mау.
Armеd Fоrсеѕ Dау іѕ thе thіrd Sunday іn Mау.
May 5th іѕ Cіnсо De Mayo, соmmеmоrаtіng thе Mеxісаn dеfеаt of the Frеnсh at Puеblа
The Kеntuсkу Derby takes place thе fіrѕt Sunday іn May.
It is ѕаіd that King Arthur dіеd on Mау 30 542
Joan of Arс dіеd оn May 30, 1431.


10. Nаmеd аftеr Mаіа
Thе name Mау hаѕ bееn generated frоm Mаіа. Shе happens to bе a Greek Goddess, thе Goddess of fertility. Aраrt frоm thе fertility раrt, she also hарреnѕ tо bе thе Goddess of Spring аnd grоwth. May іѕ a blеѕѕеd month tо bеgіn wіth, ассоrdіng tо thе Romans!

9. Lоvе & Suссеѕѕ
Pеорlе whо аrе bоrn in May are more lіkеlу tо асhіеvе hіghеr success and mоrе lоvе in their lіfе. Evеn though іt’ѕ mostly a relative fасt, Mау people hаvе a better grasp on these elements of life thаn people bоrn in оthеr months.The bіrthѕtоnе for May is Emerald.

8. Emріrе Stаtе Buіldіng
Once the tallest building in the world and currently thе fifth tallest building in the United States, the Empire State Building opened fоr аll оn Mау 1, 1931. Thіѕ 443 mеtеr tаll buіldіng hеld thе hоnоr оf bеіng the tаllеѕt buіldіng оf USA untіl thе Wоrld Trаdе Cеntеr was completed in 1973. After the WTC attacks on 09/11/2001, the Empire State Building was temporarily the tallest but in 2014, One World Trade Center opened at a symbolic 1,776 feet.

7. Banning оf Maypoles
In 1644,  Englаnd banned Mауроlеѕ. Thеѕе are роlеѕ usually mаdе оf wood аnd lоng еnоugh tо ѕtаnd аѕ a сеlеbrаtіоn prop fоr Eurореаn fеѕtіvаlѕ. Mауроlе dances аrе hеld in May, uѕuаllу оn Mау Day. Hоwеvеr, ѕоmе Eurореаn countries celebrate Mау Day in mіd-ѕummеr аѕ wеll.

6. Nеwtоn’ѕ Maypole
Evеn аftеr ѕuсh rеѕtrісtіоn, people uѕеd tо put uр mауроlеѕ to сеlеbrаtе thеіr May fеѕtіvаlѕ. One such mауроlе, which was 123 fееt long, wаѕ рut up іn Lоndоn; thіѕ wаѕ done tо оbѕеrvе Charles II’ѕ rеturn. Hоwеvеr, thіѕ maypole wаѕ lаtеr used bу Isaac Nеwtоn to ѕuрроrt his tеlеѕсоре.

5. Mау Day
May celebrates mаnу days, bеgіnnіng wіth the Mау Dау оn thе fіrѕt dау of Mау. Thіѕ іѕ also knоwn аѕ labor’s dау. Labors were dіѕреrѕеd оn Mау 4, 1886 whо had gаthеrеd dеmаndіng еіght hour wоrkdау. Pоlісе fіrеd ѕhоtѕ еndеd uр killing fоur demonstrators; аnd thе dау is recognized as the International Wоrkеr’ѕ Dау AKA Lаbоr Dау еvеr ѕіnсе.

4. Other Days in Mау
Apart from the Intеrnаtіоnаl Wоrkеr’ѕ Dау, the month оf May houses fеw оthеr dауѕ as wеll. The 2nd Sunday оf Mау is celebrated as Intеrnаtіоnаl Mоthеr’ѕ Day. Mеmоrіаl Day іѕ сеlеbrаtеd оn thе lаѕt Mоndау оf Mау. May 5 is Cinco de Mayo; оn the first Saturday of May, Kеntuсkу Derby іѕ сеlеbrаtеd іn thе USA.

3. Nо US President Died
No U.S. president has ever died in the month of May.  Hоwеvеr, оn Mау twо of U.S. рrеѕіdеntѕ were bоrn. They аrе Harry S. Trumаn and Jоhn F. Kennedy.

2. Zоdіас Signs
Two Zodiac ѕіgnѕ hаvе оссuріеd thе month оf Mау. Thеу аrе Tаuruѕ and Gеmіnі.

1. The Indianapolis 500 is always held during
Memorial weekend in May.

Being the 5th month оf the year, May could have bееn a dull mоnth. But thеrе hарреnѕ to bе a lоt of іntеrеѕtіng facts аbоut this mоnth, аѕ ѕtаtеd аbоvе.


Celebrate the gorgeous month of May! The Sun is warming, the birds are chirping, the flowers are blooming, and the garden is growing. See what fun and interesting days May has to offer—from holidays to history to advice.

The glittering leaves of the rhododendrons
Balance and vibrate in the cool air;
While in the sky above them
White clouds chase each other.
—John Gould Fletcher (1886–1950)


May is named for the Roman goddess Maia, who oversaw the growth of plants. Learn more about the origins of the months’ names.

  • May 1 is May Day. Mark the return of spring by bringing in branches of forsythia, lilacs, or other flowering shrubs from your region.
  • In Hawaii, May 1 is celebrated as Lei Day. Leis are garlands or wreaths that are often made with native Hawaiian flowers and leaves. Nowadays, they are given as a symbol of greeting, farewell, affection, celebration, or honor, in the spirit of aloha. Lei Day originated in 1927, when poet Don Blanding proposed a holiday to recognize the lei’s role in Hawaiian culture. Writer Grace Tower Warren suggested May 1 for the date because it coincided with May Day, a celebration also linked to flowers. She coined the phrase, “May Day is Lei Day.” The first Lei Day observance occurred on May 1, 1928. The following year, it was made an official holiday in the territory. (Hawaii did not become a state until 1959.)
    Today, Lei Day celebrations may include music, games, exhibits, and lei-making demonstrations and contests.
  • Cinco de Mayo (“The Fifth of May”) celebrates the victory of the Mexicans over the French army at The Battle of Puebla in 1862.
  • Sunday, May 13, is Mother’s Day! Do you have something planned to show appreciation for your mother? Learn about the history of Mother’s Day.
  • May 21 is Victoria Day in Canada. This holiday celebrates the birthday of Queen Victoria.
  • Monday, May 28, is Memorial Day—a poignant reminder of the tenacity of life. It’s tradition to post the flag on this day; know your American flag rules.

Asparagus Frittata. Photo by zi3000/Shutterstock
Asparagus frittata. Photo by zi3000/Shutterstock.


‘Tis the season of fresh, spring ingredients! Check out our list of Spring Recipes to get inspired.

Try some of these recipes that feature the first crops of the season:


Butterfly on flower



A dry May and a leaking June
Make the farmer whistle a merry tune.

A snowstorm in May
Is worth a wagonload of hay.

Among the changing months, May stands confessed
The sweetest, and in fairest colors dressed!

–James Thomson, Scottish poet (1700–48)

Full Flower Moon


  • May’s full Moon, the Full Flower Moon, occurs on the 29th, at 10:20 A.M. (EDT). See the Full Moon for May Guide for facts and folklore.
  • See the May 2018 Sky Watch to find out what to look for this month and the May 2018 Sky Map to navigate the night sky from your own backyard.


Taurus: April 21 to May 20

Gemini: May 21 to June 20


May’s birth flower is the Hawthorn or Lily-of-the-Valley.

The hawthorn means hope, while the lily-of-the-valley symbolizes sweetness or the return of happiness. Learn more about May’s birth flowers.

May’s birthstone is the emerald. See birthstone meanings.

A few fun facts about emeralds:

  • The emerald is a green type of beryl. Its color ranges from light to rich green; the more saturated hues are more valuable, especially if pure- or blue-green.
  • Natural emeralds are flawed, with fractures or other materials mixed in, called inclusions, which may appear as needles, columns, or cubes of minerals or bubbles of gas or liquid. Sometimes oil or resin is added to fill fractures and improve appearance.
  • Some of the best emeralds come from South American mines, although perhaps the oldest known came from Egypt. The emerald was a favorite gem of Cleopatra.
  • The emerald symbolizes rebirth and fertility and was thought to grant foresight, cure various diseases, soothe nerves, improve memory, and ensure loyalty.


May 23: What’s Your Name?

On this day in 1707, Swedish botanist and naturalist Carl Linnaeus was born. One of his major achievements was the formal introduction of a system of classifying and naming organisms according to genus and species, called binomial nomenclature. The method uses Latin words (a language commonly used by scholars in his day). For example, humans are classified as Homo sapiensHomo, meaning “man,” is the genus and sapiens, meaning “wise,” is the species. Several species may exist within one genus, but each species only has one scientific name. Scientists today use a modified version of Linnaeus’s system. Because the same naming convention is used throughout the world, it eliminates much confusion when discussing organisms.

Did You Know?
Carl Linnaeus originated the use of 0 (the symbol for Mars) to mean male and 1 (the symbol for Venus) to mean female.

May 26: Terrifying Twisters

On this day in 1917, tornadoes struck central Illinois, killing 101 people. Originally thought to be just one tornado that wreaked havoc along a 293-mile-long path, the outbreak was later determined to be four to eight tornadoes. One of them lasted 4 hours and followed a track 155 miles long (including the distance traveled while in the air). Mattoon and Charleston were especially hard hit by an F4 tornado (original Fujita scale). In Mattoon, almost 500 houses were destroyed.

Mattoon twister, 1917

According to newspaper reports:

  • straw was driven ½ inch deep into a tree
  • a flagpole with flag was blown four blocks and planted upright in the ground
  • books and other items were carried 50 to 70 miles away


According to astronomers, what is a Julian day?

Answer: The term “Julian day” can be confusing because it has several meanings, including being a date on the Julian calendar. In astronomy, however, the Julian day (or Julian day number) is the number of days that have passed since the start of a Julian period. The Julian period is a year-numbering system developed by 16th-century French astronomer Joseph Justus Scaliger. He determined that the current Julian period began on January 1, 4713 B.C. of the Julian calendar; every 7,980 years, the count of years restarts.

For dating and comparing the timing of astronomical events and observations, John Herschel and other astronomers created a day-numbering system based on Scaliger’s Julian period. There are no months in a Julian day system; it simply counts the days, and fractions of days in decimals, since the period began. Julian day 0 occurred on January 1, 4713 B.C. The Julian day starts at noon Universal Time (Greenwich Mean Time) so that nighttime astronomical events occur on one Julian day.

A Julian date includes the fraction of a Julian day. For example, on May 1, 2016 (Gregorian calendar date), at midnight (the start of the day on a common calendar) the Julian day number was 2457509, and the Julian date was 2457509.5. On May 1, 2016, at noon, the Julian day number changed to 2457510 and the Julian date to 2457510.0.

Special Days and Observances in May

The month of May has fun and interesting days to celebrate as the spring weather turns warm and you look forward to summer. You and your child can learn more about history, health conditions, and healthy living. Your school, community center, or health organizations may have events and activities planned around these dates, but you can take the lead and design an activity for your child to focus on ones that are of interest.

Month-Long Observances

Week-Long Observances

  • National Family Reading Week (first week)
  • Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week (first full week)
  • National Physical Education and Sport Week (first week)
  • Teacher Appreciation Week (first full week, Monday through Friday)
  • Children’s Book Week (first week)
  • Screen-Free Week (first week)
  • Wildflower Week (first week)
  • Astronomy Week (second week)
  • Reading is Fun Week (second full week)

Special Days and Holidays

These observances may be held on the same day each year or they may move from year to year. The dates given are only examples. Check your calendar for the exact dates for any given year.

First Four Days

  • May 1 May Day
  • May 1 Mother Goose Day
  • May 1 Law Day
  • May 1 Make a Book Day
  • May 1 World Laughter Day (first Sunday)
  • May 2 Sibling Appreciation Day
  • May 2 Teacher Appreciation Day (Tuesday of first full week)
  • May 3 Sun Day
  • May 3 Kite Day
  • May 4 Intergalactic Star Wars Day (May the Fourth Be With You)
  • May 4 National Weather Observers Day

Next Eight Days

  • May 5  Museum Lovers Day
  • May 5 Cartoonist Day
  • May 5 National Day of Reason (first Thursday)
  • May 6 No Homework Day
  • May 6 International Space Day (first Friday)
  • May 6 Tuba Day (first Friday)
  • May 7 Space Day (first Saturday)
  • May 8 Mother’s Day
  • May 8 VE Day
  • May 9  National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day
  • May 9  Peter Pan Day
  • May 10 Windmill Day
  • May 11 Eat What You Want Day
  • May 12 Limerick Day
  • May 12 International Migratory Bird Day

Next Six Days

  • May 13 Frog Jumping Day
  • May 13 Tulip Day
  • May 13 Blame Someone Else Day (first Friday 13th of the year)
  • May 14 Star Wars Day
  • May 14 Stars and Stripes Forever Day
  • May 15 International Day of Families
  • May 15 Over the Rainbow Day
  • May 16 Biographer’s Day
  • May 17 World Telecommunications Day
  • May 18 International Museum Day
  • May 19 National Learn to Swim Day (third Saturday in May)

Last Week

  • May 20 Endangered Species Day (third Friday)
  • May 21 Armed Forces Day (third Saturday)
  • May 22 National Maritime Day
  • May 23 World Turtle Day
  • May 24 Scavenger Hunt Day
  • May 25 Nerd or Geek Pride Day
  • May 25 National Heat Awareness Day (last Friday)
  • May 30 Memorial Day (last Monday)

6 Interesting facts about the month of May that you didn’t know!

A new month is with us; the month of the flowers, the fifth month of the year and also, the month in which huge and important celebrations take place! Welcome May!

Each month of the year has stories to tell and may, is an outstanding one!; therefore, here are 6 Interesting facts about the month of May that you didn’t know:

1. The month May was named for Maia, the Greek goddess of fertility.

Maia Godess

2. In any given year, no month ever begins or ends on the same day of the week as May does.


3. May’s birthstone is the emerald which is emblematic of love and success.


4. May was once considered a bad luck month to get married. There is a poem that says “Marry in May and you’ll rue the day”.


5.  The United Kingdom celebrates May as the National Smile Month.

UK 2

6. On May 1, 1931, the Empire State Building was officially opened.



26 replies »

      • You are now on the self hosted site Mr M. All going well, just still having a hard time to figure out my pics as they are all stretched and grainy, and I do the same as on the old site. Not sure what’s up. Any suggetions


      • That sounds like a pixel issue and I’d suggest saving them all over again and not trying to use the old images from the wordpress hosting platform. Sounds to me as if WordPress is not compatible with your new hosting site. Saving them again to your new site might solve that problem OR try resizing them in whatever photo saving app you use, down a size smaller.


      • Self hosting offers a whole different set of issues when migrating from one platform to another. It is a solution to WORSTPRESS and their dumbfuckery but it also can be like starting over from scratch when it comes to learning your new host. I would love to be free or WORSTPRESS and their constant “upgrading/improvements” which just get in the way and slow down my blogging duties but then I would lose the magnificent WordPress community of bloggers…..and I’m too lazy for all that work of migrating. Good luck Ms. Esme and I will always be a follower and an admirer…. no matter where you go. 🌞☀️💫🤗🤗🤗🎈

        Liked by 1 person

      • Reblog Button is specific to WordPress. One of the very few things they did right. I wrote a code that allows me to reblog post from outside the WORSTPRESS community on My WordPress blog. Thats how I continue to reblog your post after your migration.

        Liked by 1 person

      • WOW – you’re so awesome !! Thanks Mr M.
        I have done a lot of reading on the bad images I have and still unable to come up with a solution to this immense problem I have. Should you find something, please let me know.


  1. Thanks for your time and effort in putting this together JB. I love this feature on your blog and it gets the grey matter going for the month ahead.


Reply At Your Own Risk. Leave The Dumbfuckery At The Door.

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s