May 3: the waxing gibbous moon will pass through the Leo constellation. The moon will be less than a degree away from Regulus, the brightest of Leo’s stars.
May 5: Eta Aquarids meteor shower Peak, starting around 10 pm. Look to the East, near constellation of Aquarius.
May 7: Jupiter will pass through the constellation of Virgo.
May 10: Full Flower Moon
May 11: Jovian Eclipses. Ganymede, Jupiter’s largest moon, will move through the planet’s shadow until 10:55 pm ET, and at 11:45 pm ET Europa will disappear behind Jupiter. Visible through a telescope.
May 13: Saturn will rise with the waning gibbous moon.
May 17: Mercury will be at its greatest western elongation. See before sunrise on Southeast horizon.
May 22: Venus will rise with waning crescent moon in East.
May 31: Regulus will pass through Leo for a second time this month.
On this day the Moon will be in a New Moon phase. During this phase the Moon is to close to the sun in the sky to be visible. The moon rises and sets with the sun and is not present in the night sky. Because of this the night sky is darker and an excellent time to view other celestial objects. Like the Full Moon, a New Moon happens at a very specific time when the sun and moon have the same ecliptic longitude and it can be measured down to the second it occurs.
SpaceX has confirmed plans to send two private citizens around the Moon by 2018. The two passengers approached the company privately and have paid “significant deposits,” according to Elon Musk, founder and CEO of SpaceX.
The names of the two citizens people are unreleased. According to Musk they will begin initial training for the trip later this year. Musk declined to announce the real cost of the mission, though admitted that it would be “comparable” the cost of a crewed mission to the International Space Station.
SpaceX hopes to launch the mission during 2018, aboard the Falcon Heavy, a new “super heavy-lift” rocket system that has been developed with the specific intention to carry humans into space.,
The trip is estimated to last approximately one week: first, the rocket will skim the surface of the Moon, then go further out into deep space, and finally will loop back to Earth — reaching a distance of approximately 300,000 to 400,000 miles in total.
This will be the first time in 45 years that humans have gone *near* the moon. SpaceX was careful to note that there will no attempted moon landing. Still, this will be the first time in 45 years that humans will have travelled into deep space. SpaceX claims that these travelers will go further into the solar system than any humans have before.
Spring Color Image by Photo Nature Blog Nature and Outdoor Photography by Jeffrey Foltice photonatureblog.com
The Ancient Mysteries call forth a return to Nature’s rhythms on an intuitive level. Spirit and Nature in Harmony! The earth seasons are designed to promote specific evolutionary needs. The autumn is the seed planting time; the winter is the gestation of the seed and the taking root. The spring is the bursting forth of those new seeds to release new aspiring life to be harvested in the summer. These are always reflected in the hidden mysteries of Nature.
The spring equinox opens the veil between the physical and the spiritual so that a resurrection in our lives can be inaugurated. The keynote of this season is creation. It is the drive to move our lives upward, like a seed pushing forth out of the earth into the air. The spring is the time when…
The spring equinox is significant because after a long and dark winter, the hours of day and night are equal for the first time this year – about 12 hours each.
Astronomically speaking, the equinox falls on March 19 or 20 every year, marking spring’s beginning in the Northern Hemisphere (whereas it announces fall’s arrival in the Southern Hemisphere). The equinox happens at the same moment worldwide, even if our clock times reflect a different time zone.
The vernal equinox is the astrological name for the spring equinox. It marks the moment the sun crosses the equator from south to north. It occurred at 10.29 GMT.
At the Vernal Equinox, the Sun crosses the celestial equator on its way north along the ecliptic.All over the world, days and nights are approximately equal. The name equinox comes from Latin words which mean “equal night”—aequus (equal) and nox (night). Enjoy the increasing sunlight hours, with earlier dawns and later sunsets.
On the equinox, Earth’s two hemispheres are receiving the Sun’s rays about equally because the tilt of the Earth is zero relative to the Sun, which means that Earth’s axis neither points toward nor away from the Sun. (Note, however, that the Earth never orbits upright, but is always tilted on its axis by about 23.5 degrees.)
The equinox differs from the solstices, which occur twice yearly to mark the sun’s most northern or southern position relative to the equator. This year, the summer solstice falls on Wednesday, 21 June, while the winter solstice is on Thursday, 21 December.
Scientific explanation aside, our ancestors were more connected to the Sun than we are today. They observed its pathway across the sky; they tracked how the sunrise, sunset, and daylength changed, using the Sun (and Moon) as a clock and calendar. If you have ever been to Stonehenge or Machu Picchu, you’ll see examples of ancient seasonal markers.
Ostara is the name given by Pagans and Wiccans to the spring equinox and is one of the eight ‘sabbats’ – periods they believe make up the year. Some observers believe the event is a revival of ancient celebrations of spring, which merged into Easter after the spread of Christianity in the British Isles. Modern observers often see in Ostara at Stonehenge, in a similar fashion to the summer and winter solstices.
SIGNS OF THE EQUINOX IN NATURE
The vernal equinox signals the beginning of nature’s renewal in the Northern Hemisphere!
Worms begin to emerge from the earth. Even the March Moon is called “The Full Worm Moon” for this reason.
Notice the arc of the Sun across the sky as it shifts toward the north. Birds are migrating northward, along with the path of the Sun.
Speaking of birds, did you know that the increasing sunlight triggers bird song? Cool, eh? Enjoy our Bird Songs page.
Trees, shrubs and flowers are sensitive to temperature and daylength, too! Since ancient days, people have used them as indicators of when the weather is right for planting. For example: Blooming crocus are your cue to plant radishes, parsnips and spinach. See more of nature’s signs.
Of course, the longer days bring warmer weather! Both we and the animals around us strip off our clothes and heavy coats!
Ready, set, plant! March is time to start gardens and sow seeds in many regions. See your personalized Best Planting Dates.