The spring equinox occurs this Saturday, March 20.
The temperature is starting to warm up, flowers are beginning to bloom, and bees are making their presence known, which means that it's nearly springtime! The spring equinox, or vernal equinox, officially marks the beginning of the spring season in the Northern Hemisphere. Are you ready?
If you don't know what the spring equinox is, let me give you a brief lesson. The spring equinox (March) is one of two equinoxes that occur each year; the other is the autumn equinox (September). "Equinox" comes from the Latin words aequi, which means "equal," and nox, meaning "night." Together, they become "equal night." And this is basically what the spring and autumn equinoxes are; day and night become equal (12 hours) all over the world.
Now, what causes this? Well, usually, the Earth tilts on its axis, which about 23.4 degrees, as it orbits the sun. This means that different parts of the planet get more or fewer amounts of sunlight, causing the different seasons. But during the equinoxes, the Earth's tilt is perpendicular to the sun's rays, so it's shining directly on the equator.
This year, the spring equinox happens on March 20 at 5:37 a.m. (EDT) for the Northern Hemisphere. In the Southern Hemisphere, though, it marks the start of fall.
Are you ready to usher in the spring season? Share your thoughts in the comments below.