May’s full Moon reaches its peak on May 15-16, 2022! Plus, this full Moon will be a supermoon and coincide with a total lunar eclipse for most of North America. Here’s everything you should know about this month’s full Moon, including how it came to be called the “Flower Moon.”
When to See the Full Moon in May 2022
May’s full Flower Moon reaches peak illumination at 12:15 A.M. (EDT) on Monday, May 16. This means that it will reach its peak on the night of Sunday, May 15, in more western time zones.
Why Is It Called the Flower Moon?
The full Moon names used by The Old Farmer’s Almanac come from a number of places, including Native American, Colonial American, and European sources. Traditionally, each full Moon name was applied to the entire lunar month in which it occurred, not solely to the full Moon. May’s Flower Moon name should be no surprise; flowers spring forth across North America in abundance this month!
“Flower Moon” has been attributed to Algonquin peoples, as confirmed by Christina Ruddy of The Algonquin Way Cultural Centre in Pikwakanagan, Ontario.
American Indian Tribes gave names to each of the full moons to keep track of the passing year. The names are associated with the entire month until the next full moon occurs. Since a lunar month averages 29 days, the dates of the moons change from year to year.
Algonquin tribe’s name for May’s full Moon: “suquanni kesos” translated as “when they set indian corn.”
Venture outdoors on the night of the 15th to get the best view of the bright full Flower Moon! Find a location with unobstructed views of the horizon, if possible. See what time the Moon will be visible in your area with our Moonrise and Moonset Calculator.
A “Blood Moon” Total Lunar Eclipse
This month’s full Moon coincides with a total lunar eclipse! A lunar eclipse occurs when Earth stands directly between the Moon and the Sun, which results in Earth casting its shadow on the Moon. During a total lunar eclipse, the Moon is fully obscured by Earth’s shadow, giving the Moon a reddish hue. This phenomenon is where the term “blood moon” comes from.
Full Moon Video for May, featuring Amy Neskiens