The word ‘equinox’ comes from the Latin, and it means ‘equal night’ and there are approximately 12 hours of light and 12 hours of darkness. This occurs when the sun crosses the equator which happens twice a year; in March and September. In astrology the sun moves into Aries at the March equinox signifying the start of the astrological year. Now in September, the sun moves into Libra, the seventh sign of the zodiac and Aries’ opposite sign. The timings vary slightly every year, this year it is September 22nd at 21.01 BST.
In the Northern Hemisphere winter is approaching and the harvest is occurring and the collecting and sorting of produce is necessary. In paganism the autumn Equinox is celebrated as ‘Mabon’ which is Celtic for son. This is when the harvest festivals occur and the earth’s gifts are celebrated and carefully stored. In my allotment I have already pulled up the bean plants, gathered the last of my beans and weeded the plot. However, I have more to do of course, I still have carrots and beetroot in the ground and loads of tomatoes in the poly tunnel.
Harvest is a time of balance and reflection, an opportunity to look at what we did since the spring equinox and see our successes and failures. In my allotment I foolishly planted spring cabbage plants in July without covering them in netting. I knew I was taking a risk as we have a very active Large White butterfly community in our corner of Norfolk. To quote Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman ‘Big mistake! Huge!’ They were munched by a million caterpillars, well loads anyway. (I’m a Sag, prone to exaggeration) I tried to rescue them and covered the survivors a few weeks ago, too little too late I fear. My note to self is trust my intuition and act on it not just rush in without planning and thinking! This is something which I am not always good at. However, I know it is worth doing if I want the results that I know I can achieve.
I hope you enjoy this beautiful Autumn, I’m off to pick sloes.