01 July 2011


Astronomy for July: Full Buck Moon on the 15th.

Meteor Shower: Delta Aquarids on July 29th. [That's the peak date, but EarthSky says to watch in late July and early August.  Look south in the pre-dawn hours. The moon will be gone, making this a good shower to watch]

Weather for July
According to the Twelve Days of Christmas: Beautiful!  Sunny, clear, and warm!
According to the first twelve days of January: Overcast, chilly.
According to the Ember Days: Sunny and very warm.

Weather Lore:
As July, so next January [does this refer to extreme weather? If it is really hot in July it will be correspondingly cold in January? Because, trust me, while I may want July weather in January, it doesn't happen.]

Never trust a July sky. [Indeed!  It might look beautifully clear in one direction, but turn around and notice those massing cloudbanks]

It never rains at night in July.

Rain in the third hour of a July afternoon is the heaviest of the year.

The first Friday in July is always wet.

7/1 - If it rains between the first and the fourth of July, it will rain for forty days.
        If the first of July be rainy weather, it will rain more or less for four weeks together.
        If it rains on July 1st, it will rain seventeen days in the month.
        If it rains on July 1st, there will be no grapes that year.

7/2 - If it rains on St. Mary's Day, it will rain, off and on, for four weeks.
        If it rains on St. Mary's Day, it will last until St. Mary Magdalene (July 22)
        If it rains on the feast of Saint Processus and Martinian, there will be great rain storms and hail.

7/3 - As the Dog Days commence, so they end.
        If it rains on the first Dog-Day, it will rain for forty days after [or for thirty days after.  Take your pick]
         Dog Days bright and clear, indicate a happy year.

7/4 - If Bullion's Day be dry, there will be an early harvest.
        If the deer rise up dry and lie down dry on Bullion's day, there will be a good harvest.
        If it rains on Bullion's Day, it will rain for forty days.
        If it rains on the fourth of July, there will be no grapes that year.

7/6 - The weather on St. Godelieve's day foretells the weather of the next six weeks.

7/7 - Rain today means rain for the next four weeks.

7/10 - If it rains on July 10th, it will rain for seven weeks.
          As the weather is on the Feast of the Seven Brothers, so will it be for seven weeks.

7/13 - If St. Margaret's Day be dry, God will give us a fine autumn.

7/15 - Saint Swithin's Day, if thou dost rain, for forty days it will remain
           Saint Swithin's Day, if thou be fair, for forty days will rain no more.
          If on St. Swithin's day it proves fair, a temperate winter will follow; but if it is rainy, stormy, or windy, then the contrary.

7/21 - If it rains on the 21st, we will have fair weather following.

7/25 - As the weather is on Saint James' Day, so it will be on Christmas Day.
          If St. James' day is clear, then Christmas will be cold and frosty [that's a pretty good bet, either way].
          On St. James' day, the weather before noon foretells the winter before Christmas, and the weather after noon foretells the winter after Christmas.  If the sun shines, there will be cold weather; if it rains, there will be warm and moist weather; if it is between the two, it will be neither too warm nor too cold.

7/26 - If it rains on St. Ann's Day, it will rain for a month and a week [however, some people call the rain on this day "Saint Ann's Dower" and consider it a good thing].

Farming and Gardening:
Sow your cabbage seeds on the first Wednesday after the 29th of July.

Roses begin to fade on Magdalene's day (July 22).

My 1817 Almanac advised its readers to "Sow Turnips and Onions to stand the Winter; as also Carrots, Coleworts, and Cauliflowers.  Keep your Garden clean from Weeds, and do not neglect to weed frequently your new-planted Quicks*.  Gather such Seeds as are ripe, as also Flowers; dry them in the Shade, then in the Sun."
   "Plant out Celery, Cabbages, and Broccoli in cloudy Weather.  Earth up Peas and Beans."
   "Forbear superfluous Drinking.  Use Cold Herbs.  Shun boiled, salt and strong Meats, and abstain from Physic."

*Quicks: Quickset, a living plant set to grow, especially for a hedge.  Specifically, hawthorn planted to form a hedge.