The annual full moon for May, known as the Full Flower Moon, will hit full phase Tuesday morning and offer some solid sky viewing for the next couple of nights.
While it wasn't visible when it hit full phase at about 10:20 a.m. Tuesday, May 29, the best time for viewing the Full Flower Moon will be when it rises again after 8 p.m. NASA reports that May's annual full moon gets its name from Native American tribes due to flowers being "abundant this time of year."
"We use Full Moon names that were used during Native American and Colonial times to help track the seasons. Depending on the tribe, May's Full Moon was called the Full Flower Moon as well as Mother's Moon, Milk Moon, and Corn Planting Moon," The Old Farmer's Almanac explains.
"The May Moon marked a time of increasing fertility, with temperatures warm enough for safely bearing young, a near end to late frosts, and plants in bloom."
The U.S. space agency reports the Sun will hit its maximum altitude of 72.8 degrees at 1:06 p.m. Tuesday, and that sunset is at 8:25 p.m. Evening twilight will end at 9:36 p.m. Tuesday, and the Flower Moon should be visible throughout the night. For a sky report for any potential viewing, click here.
The Flower Moon marks the fifth full moon of the year, and is the third and final full moon of spring. Previous full moons from 2018 occurred on Jan. 1, Jan. 31, March 1, March 31, April 29 and May 29.
The next full moon is the Strawberry Moon, and is set to hit full phase in the early morning hours of June 28. June's full moon is named for the fact that it's the best time of the year for ripening strawberries, but much like the Flower Moon, it also has a couple of names in the Rose and Hot Moon.
For those looking to the sky for some moon views, NASA points out that Jupiter and its four bright moons should be visible using a small telescope throughout the evening. The giant gas planet should be found higher up in the western evening sky.
See below for a rundown of the other full moon names, courtesy of National Geographic:
- January -- Wolf
- February -- Snow
- March -- Worm
- April -- Pink
- May -- Flower
- June -- Strawberry
- July -- Buck
- August -- Sturgeon
- September -- Harvest
- October -- Hunter's
- November -- Beaver
- December -- Cold