Native American Full Moon Names
Most of the commonly accepted full moon names used in North America are derived from the names given by Native American tribes, specifically the Eastern Cherokee. You may already know that many of those names describe what’s happening in nature and agricultural practices around that time of year, like the February Snow Moon. The moon names also reflect Anglo-Saxon influence.
Based on a Native American tribe’s location, their full moon names may reflect behaviors of animals native to that area, such as the Northern Arapaho’s March full moon “Buffalo dropping their calves” (references listed below post). Due to differing weather patterns depending upon location, certain plants are best planted or harvested in the previous or following month. For example, the Flower Moon is primarily in May, but for some tribes it fell in June.
This month-shifting can also occur when the full moon is named for another astronomical event, such as the Harvest Moon, which is the full moon nearest the Autumn Equinox. In 2 out of 3 years, the Harvest Moon occurs in September (in 2020, the Harvest Moon fell in early October). Learn more about how the full moons got their names at “Traditional Full Moon Names” from timeanddate.com.
Below, I list the most commonly-used names for each full moon by month (along with a few other interesting names), their 2021 dates for the US, and the sign in which the full moon occurs.
January Full Moon: Wolf, Old, Great Spirit, Winter
Thursday, January 28th, 2021 in Leo
February: Snow, Sleet, Hunger, Bone, Trapper’s
Saturday, February 27th, 2021 in Virgo
March: Worm, Crow, Sap, Windy
Sunday, March 28th, 2021 in Libra
April: Pink, Sprouting Grass, Egg, Fish, Leaf
Monday, April 26th, 2021 in Scorpio–Supermoon
May: Flower, Blossom, Planting, Corn Planting, Milk
Wednesday, May 26th, 2021 in Sagittarius–Supermoon Eclipse
June: Strawberry, Rose
Thursday, June 24th, 2021 in Capricorn
July: Buck, Thunder, Hay, Raspberry, Hot, Little Ripening
Friday, July 23rd, 2021 in Aquarius
August: Sturgeon, Berry, Big Ripening, Blackberry
Sunday, August 22nd, 2021 in Aquarius–Blue (3rd of 4 full moons in a season, summer)
September: Harvest (Full moon closest to the Autumn Equinox), Corn, Rice, Drying Grass, Plum
Monday, September 20th, 2021 in Pisces
October: Hunter’s, Falling Leaves
Wednesday, October 20th, 2021 in Aries
November: Beaver, Frost, Freezing
Friday, November 19th, 2021 in Taurus–Eclipse
December: Cold, Long Night, Popping Trees, Little Spirit
Saturday, December 18th, 2021 in Gemini
“When Is The Next Full Moon? 2020-2021 Dates, Times, And Names”. Farmers’ Almanac. Updated 02 Dec. 2020. Date of Accessed 18 Dec. 2020.
Konstantin, Phil. “Indian Moons, Days & Other Calendar Stuff”. This Day in North American Indian History. Updated 17 June 2018. Accessed 18 Dec. 2020.
Boland, Yasmin. Moonology Diary 2021. Hay House UK LTD, 2020.
Top Free Resources for Working with the Moon
“A Baker’s Dozen of Full Moons ~ 2021 ~ Adjustable Full Moon Dates & Information”. Moon Tracks Astrology Calendars. Full Moon dates, times adjustable by time zone, names, and signs in which each occurs.
Check your local current moon phase and the next New and Full Moon dates at timeanddate.com.
Keep it simple with Biddy Tarot’s New and Full Moon Spreads and Visualizations you can reuse every month – A 6-card spread and guided audio meditation for each phase in a fillable PDF.
2021 Tarot by the Moon by Ethony* – Free guide to 24 New and Full Moon Tarot spreads organized by date.