Home   Full Moon names   Pink Moon

April: Pink Moon

The name Pink Moon comes from the pink flowers – phlox – that bloom in spring. Other names for this Full Moon are Sprouting Grass Moon, Fish Moon, Hare Moon, Egg Moon, and Paschal Moon.

Pink wild ground phlox are a native flower to North America.

Pink Wild Ground Phlox in bloom.

©iStockphoto.com/GrashAlex

In ancient times, it was common to track the changing seasons by following the lunar month rather than the solar year, which the 12 months in our modern calendar are based on.

For millennia, people across Europe, as well as Native American tribes, named the months after features they associated with the Northern Hemisphere seasons, and many of these names are very similar or identical.

Full Moon Names

Today, we use many of these ancient month names as Full Moon names. A common explanation is that Colonial Americans adopted many of the Native American names and incorporated them into the modern calendar.

However, it seems that it is a combination of Native American, Anglo-Saxon, and Germanic month names which gave birth to the names commonly used for the Full Moon today.

Some years have 13 Full Moons, which makes one of them a Blue Moon, as it doesn't quite fit in with the traditional Full Moon naming system. However, this is not the only definition of a Blue Moon.

Pink Flowers

The name Pink Moon comes from one of the first spring flowers, Wild Ground Phlox, also known as Moss Phlox (Phlox subulata) as they cover the ground like a pink blanket. These brightly-colored flowers are native to North America, and they often bloom around the time of April's Full Moon.

Other names for this Full Moon include Sprouting Grass Moon, Fish Moon, Hare Moon, and the Anglo-Saxon name is Egg Moon. Hare Moon is also used for the May Full Moon. These names all refer to the birth of spring with grass sprouting, birds laying eggs, fish being more plentiful, hares breeding, and people planting seeds.

Paschal Moon

The first Full Moon in April is also known as the Paschal Moon in the ecclesiastical (Christian) calendar, because it is used to calculate the date for Easter; the first Sunday after the Paschal Moon is Easter Sunday. The ancient Hare Moon and Egg Moon names are often referenced a potential reasons for the emergence of the modern Easter Bunny laying Easter eggs.

Topics: Moon, April, Calendar, History, Seasons, Months