February takes its name from Februare – to make sacrifices in expiation of sins – Romans made their sacrifices to their dead. the 15th of the month was the time for purification. As part of the seasonal calendar February is the time of the ‘Ice Moon’ according to Pagan beliefs, and the period described as the ‘Moon of the Dark Red Calf’ by Black Elk. February has also been known as ‘Sprout-kale’ by the Anglo-Saxons in relation to the time the kale and cabbage was edible.” (http://www.gardendigest.com/monfeb.htm#Quotes)
According to Wikipedia: February is the third month of meteorological winter in the Northern Hemisphere. In the Southern Hemisphere, February is the third month of summer (the seasonal equivalent of August in the Northern Hemisphere, in meteorological reckoning).
I always love to see the first primroses coming out along the hedgerows and in nooks and crannies under walls and in woody places. They are shy creatures that love woodlands and road verges as long as they well tucked away…
- Its birthstone is the amethyst. It symbolizes piety, humility, spiritual wisdom, and sincerity.
- Its Zodiac signs are Aquarius (until February 18) and Pisces (February 19 onwards).
The plant of the 1st of February is the laurel or bay tree.
In the Gardner’s Almanack which I have been regularly quoting from, they have two great quotes:
“The flowers of late winter and early spring occupy places in our hearts well out of proportion to their size.”
– Gertrude S. Wister
“Still lie the sheltering snows, undimmed and white;
And reigns the winter’s pregnant silence still;
No sign of spring, save that the catkins fill,
And willow stems grow daily red and bright.
These are days when ancients held a rite
Of expiation for the old year’s ill,
And prayer to purify the new year’s will.”
– Helen Hunt Jackson, A Calendar of Sonnet’s: February