June is Bustin’ Out All Over…

To our eldest daughter, June is the loveliest month of the year. I’m inclined to agree with her – even though I don’t have a birthday this month as she does. But, to be fair, she made that comment taking lots of things into consideration. June is a very lovely month, so I decided to write a post about it. To start with here’s a sweet little poem, written by Nathaniel Parker Wills:

It is the month of June
The month of leaves and roses
When pleasant sights salute the eyes
And pleasant scents the noses.

Well that sums up a lot about this month, but I’d like to share a few facts about June that I found of interest. (There are dozens more, of course!)

    • June marks the beginning of summer in the Northern Hemisphere. In the Southern Hemisphere it is the equivalent of the north’s December.
    • The month is named after the Roman goddess, Juno, wife of Jupiter and goddess of marriage. Hence, June was seen as the perfect month to get married:

      Roman statue Juno Sospita, Author: Shakko, Creative Commons.
    • June is one of the four months with a length of 30 days. The other three are September, April and November.
    • June is the month with the longest daylight hours of the year.
    • June’s birthstones are Alexandrite, the Moonstone and Pearl:
    • The Anglo Saxon name for June was Sera Monath.
    • The summer solstice and longest day is June 21st in the Northern Hemisphere (December 21st in the Southern Hemisphere). Many festivals and celebrations are associated with this date worldwide. In the UK, Stonehenge plays a big part in the Midsummer celebrations.
    • June’s birth flowers are the honeysuckle and the rose – both of which I’ve shown above – but here’s a nice quote from Robert Burns: Oh my luve’s like a red, red rose, That’s newly sprung in June...
    • June is Gay and Lesbian Pride Month.
    • Gemini and Cancer are the astrological signs for June. Birthdays from June 1-2o are under the sign of Gemini while June 21-30 birthdays fall under the sign of Cancer:
    • Children’s Day in Britain is June 15th.
    • Fathers’ Day is in June. This year (2017) it falls on Sunday, June 18 in the UK.
    • Antony and Cleopatra and Henry IV Part 1 are the only Shakespeare plays that mention June
    • June was the 39th most popular name for a baby girl in 1925 in English-speaking countries but it dropped out of the top thousand in 1986. In the US, June was the most popular name for girls in 2009.
    • In the UK, the Queen’s birthday is June 13th, which is marked by the Trooping the Colours. This ceremony has marked the sovereign’s birthday since 1748.

      The Queen’s Birthday Parade, also known as Trooping the Colours. Horse guard’s Parade. London 2013. Author: Corporal Paul Shaw/MOD. Open Government Licence v 1.0
    • June is National Smiles Month in the UK:
  • June is a month when well dressing is prominent in towns and villages in Derbyshire and Staffordshire in the UK. This age-old custom draws many visitors, as the wells and springs look very beautiful decorated with flowers and plants – each with its own theme(s).
Well Dressing at Tissington. Author: User: Whaley Tim Creative Commons

Well, I think that’s enough facts…

Our garden is gradually losing the look of spring. The lilacs have died off and daffodils and other spring bulbs have long since disappeared. Instead, we have roses! June is definitely the month of roses here, although it’s a little too early for our Royal William and other standards. The climbers and ramblers are doing well, though. In fact, some have been flowering since mid-May and are looking rather worse for wear now:

The meadows and lanes around us are also taking on a different look, Dandelions have almost all gone and other species have taken their place:

Around the lanes today I also came across a little creature who thought he was safely hidden in his strange little nest. He probably is hidden from any predators, but I knew exactly what I was looking for – and I meant him no harm. This little nymph can be found in a frothy substance we call cuckoo spit:

The name, cuckoo spit, has nothing to do with the cuckoo bird, other than the fact that cuckoos are usually around at this time. The little creature that nestles inside this foam-like substance is a froghopper – the nymphal stage of the spittlebug. They’re so named because, although tiny, they are rather ‘frog-like’. I retrieved one from its spittle and attempted to photograph it on an old leaf:

The photo is quite useless in showing the shape of this little thing. so here’s one from good old Wiki. Definitely ‘frog-like’…

A spittlebug nymph on a blade of grass on the banks of the East Lyn River in Exmoor National Park, Devon, England. Author: Diliff. Creative Commons

And here are a few more quotes about June:

There are two seasons in Scotland: June and winter. – Billy Connolly.

If a June night could talk it would probably boast it invented romance. – Bernard Williams.

It is better to be a young June bug than an old bird of paradise – Mark Twain (I couldn’t agree more. Mr Twain!)

To finish, here’s a video from YouTube, uploaded  by cendrillon325 – which, hopefully, makes sense of my post’s title. It’s a song from the Rodger’s and Hammerstein 1956 film Carousel – aptly titled, June is Bustin’ Out all Over: