When does spring actually, spring?

An odd idea I know, but the other day I heard the weather forecast chap say that meteorologically spring begins on the 1st of March. It has never occurred to me that there are different markers for spring’s beginning, as far as I was concerned it began after the spring equinox on 2oth March or thereabouts.

After a bit of research it seems different cultures and countries mark spring in different ways. As for our country it seems you can swing one of three ways, following the astronomical equinoxes, or the meteorological theory of the 1st of March, or you can follow folklore and look out for natural phenomena, such as the blossoming of primroses and daffodils. Traditionally in recent times, most people seem to lean towards the astronomical theory (spring being called the Vernal Equinox) as this is based upon a time in the year when the light and dark hours are equal (12 hours of each) Vernal in Latin means to bloom, hence when it is appropriate to use this term to call the spring equinox. Even if this traditional view is upheld, is it a correct marker of spring? The meteoroligical angle surely makes more sense, they suggest that there are 3 months in spring- March, April and May, and three in summer, June, July and August and so forth. It does seem a bit absurd to think that if we adhere to the astrological marker, then most of June is still spring as the Summer Equinox doesn’t fall until 21st June.

Anyway, I guess the experts could deliberate about this until the cows come home, but realistically nobody can ever be correct as the weather fluctuates from year to year bringing spring at different times. I did love a theory I read on Wikipedia though that states one of the signs of spring could be ‘ the special smell of soil that has reached the temperature for micro flora to flourish’. I can definitely relate to that!!

When do you believe spring starts?

4 thoughts on “When does spring actually, spring?

  1. The meteorologists have to work in full months to manage their data. For their purposes each season is three full months rather than bits and pieces of months. Just helps with the maths.

  2. I’ve always believed Spring starts at the Spring Equinox as Autumn starts at the Autumn equinox. Equally, I’ve always believed that summer starts on the longest day (around 21st June) and winter starts on the shortest day (around 21st December.)

  3. Spring began yesterday i could smell it, they mowed the field next to my office which did help with the smell of spring theory. Next week it may snow and then it will be snowing in spring as spring started yesterday. x

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