Where does the saying “April showers bring May flowers” come from?
This proverb most likely comes from the United Kingdom. Historians believe this phrase may come from a poem by Thomas Tusser in 1557. There is also a saying from the 1880s that goes “March winds and April showers bring May flowers and June bugs.” It is difficult to pinpoint exactly where the saying comes from, but we often see its truth in the area. A wet spring with seeing flowers come up afterwards the saying has stuck around.
Often, we see patterns in our weather with the seasons. Climate is the long-term average of the weather in a particular area. In Sherburne we have the combination of the snowfall melting away and the start of rainfall sometime in March or April. With the accumulation of water in our soil and an increase in warmth and sunshine, we often see the world bloom green in May.
The saying may not always ring true depending on where you are in the world. In warmer climates this may not be true at all. Some places close to the equator have little fluctuation in seasonal changes. Places in the southern hemisphere have the opposite seasonal changes. They are in autumn heading towards winter right now!
When do flowers bloom then? Well, that depends on the flower. We often have daffodils and snowdrops in March and April. The rain is not what triggers the plants to bloom. Flowers normally require a particular temperature to start to bloom. As New York thaws from its long winter, the flowers are able to come out, along with the birds returning, and the turtles basking in the sun.
“Sweet April showers
Do spring May Flowers”
-Thomas Tusser, A Hundred Good Points of Husbandry