The April 2015 Full Moon occurs on the 4th at 12:05 UTC. It comes the day before Easter this year.
The Egg Moon is the name often given to the Full Moon before Easter, so this next Full Moon barely qualifies. That name is connected to the longer days encouraging hens to lay more eggs. That idea doesn’t hold true for the more common factory farms that artificially create longer days all year. But we also associate this time of spring with wild birds creating nest for their eggs. You may have noticed birds investigating places around your home for nesting spots and gathering materials. I have been discouraging sparrows from building nests in my retractable awning the past two weeks.
The April full moon is also called the Full Pink Moon from the moss pink (AKA wild ground phlox, mountain pinks or wild blue phlox), which is one of the common early flowers of the spring. Though gardeners plant it, it is also a spring wildflower. This is a slightly fragrant, perennial, five-petaled flower which blooms profusely and grows like a ground cover in woodland shade. In gardens, it is often used as an underplanting for larger, summer blooming plants. The plant can be colored rose, mauve, blue, white, or pink in late spring to early summer.
This year the Full Moon also coincides with a total lunar eclipse which will be visible in Asia, Australia, Pacific and the Americas.
There are other seasonal names for this Full Moon. The Full Sprouting Grass Moon, Seed Moon and New World colonists’ Planter’s Moon all come from the season.
You can celebrate the Egg Moon and the Pink Moon by dying hard-boiled some eggs pink. My grandmother only made pink eggs (using beet juice) and brownish-yellow eggs (using onion skins). No Easter egg kits for her.
Coloring and painting eggs is something the ancient Persians painted did for Nowrooz, their New Year celebration, which falls on the Spring equinox. There are images on the walls of Persepolis showing people carrying eggs for Nowrooz to the king.
At the Jewish Passover Seder, a hard-boiled egg dipped in salt water symbolizes the Passover sacrifice offered at the Temple in Jerusalem.
The pre-Christian Saxons celebrated the spring goddess called Eostre’s feast day on the Vernal Equinox in March. Her special animal was the spring hare (rabbit) and Eostre’s association with eggs and hares was incorporated into the Christian holiday of Easter.