Summer Solstice 2010

Stonehenge

The summer solstice (‘sol + stice’ from Latin, meaning ‘sun’ + ‘stand still’) arrives in the northern hemisphere this morning, June 21, at 7:28 am.  It is the longest day of the year and a day was held in reverence by ancient people as a season of rebirth and renewal, the start of the summer growing season.

Around the world, the day is celebrated with bonfires, parades, maypole dances, parties and more. At Stonehenge, thousands gathered at sunset last night at the ancient pillars of stones as they awaited daybreak. Last year over 36,000 converged to keep vigil from sunset until they celebrate the rising sun aligning with the Heel Stone, following the rituals that many believe ancient pagans celebrated.

Annual New York Times summer solstice yoga

At New York City’s annual Solstice in Times Square, hundreds of celebrants will greet the summer solstice with tranquility and transcendence in perhaps the world’s largest yoga class. Amidst the city’s noises and activity, a sense of community in this gathering brings unanimity in honoring the season of growing.

This morning I will watch the sunrise, then join a community of neighborhood friends for breakfast and the first of our summer art activities.  For me, the act of artistic creation is the beginning of another growing season where ideas and skills germinate and grow.

How will you spend the longest day of the year?  Happy summer solstice!

Ann Hohenberger, The Garden Club of Gloucester

8 thoughts on “Summer Solstice 2010

    • Hello, mother of eight! What a nice blog you have created. I hope you enjoyed your summer solstice in your Utah garden. It ended up being brutally hot and humid in Tidewater but I managed to pull a few weeds.

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  1. My absolute favorite day of the year. It was a hot one this year! I did get into the garden and finished the day with my book club and a wonderful glass of Cabernet.

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  2. I love midsummer or Litha… fireflies, lightning bugs, red roses, St. John’s wort, lavender and yarrow… but, oh… those lilies!!!
    If ever the faeries are dancing, it is this week… the powerful alignment culminating in the eclipse is this Saturday…

    From ancient times:

    A Midsummer Faery Garden Blessing:

    I call the kindly faeries into my garden and yard,
    If you are friendly, then you are welcome from near and far,
    Bless this land, protect these herbs and flowers,
    Fill them up with your magical power.
    Now hear my request as these words are spoken,
    In thanks, I offer you this crystal token,
    By the might of the Midsummer’s sun,
    So must it be, and let it harm none.

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    • Oh Dorothy, methinks we share the same fireflies, lavender and yarrow across our river. I hope this lovely garden blessing summons the faeries to protect all that grows in our gardens.

      It might be hard for those of us on the east coast to see the eclipse of the moon but I think I’ll try…

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