Thoughts from Our Editor – May 2017 – “May Flowers”

UFLO1190-8MB We’ve all heard the saying “April showers bring May flowers.”

A little digging reveals this sentiment’s origins harken back to 17th century Great Britain and Ireland where the level of precipitation in April is high because of the direction of the jet stream.

Meteorology aside, however, this expression also finds root in the idea that after a long, dark, and cold winter, a more optimistic spring awaits.

“April showers bring May flowers” is a phrase often intended to lift the spirits with the prospect of a brighter, more beautiful tomorrow. Even in the midst of a torrential downpour, we can imagine the splendor to come.

Dazzling and bold, hardy May flowers have withstood the deluge and now shine as brilliant as the sun, their vivid colors a symbol of hope realized. Who among us cannot relate to the resilient flowers of May, and to the notion that we are better for having weathered the April storms?

However, science tells us this common adage isn’t always accurate, depending on the type of flower and where you
call home.

Those living in warmer climates, for example, may see perennial buds beginning to burst as early as March or even April. Because their bulbs have been slumbering in the ground all winter, one month’s rainfall has little effect on their growth and overall health. Rather, it’s the accumulation of precipitation over many months that matters.

On the other hand, annuals, which must be replanted each year, can’t be put in soil until winter and the accompanying menace of frost has past. In climates like ours, that usually means waiting until spring is in full swing.

Whatever the type of flower, it’s clear what matters most is not precipitation but temperature. When the sun begins to warm the earth and spring like conditions have us trading our winter coats for light windbreakers, the first flowers appear, despite how much rainfall occurred during the previous month. Given a hospitable climate, they bask and thrive in the abundant light.

Again, we can draw a comparison between ourselves and flowering plants. Under the right circumstances, given warmth in the form of love and support, we also blossom and flourish as individuals. With help and encouragement, we prosper.

This edition is dedicated to living May flowers, to those who’ve experienced and overcome adversity on the path to success, as well as to those who’ve been sources of guidance and inspiration for those weathering life’s storms.

Until next month, Carla E. Anderton