Spanish May weather wisdom

Tradition Spanish sayings in May

The month of May. Credit: Mykolastock/

Does folklore hold any truth when compared to modern day meteorology?

As we transition from April’s fickle weather into the warmth of May, one cannot help but ponder the accuracy of some old Spanish proverbs.

May, a month marked by a notable increase in both temperature and daylight, embodies the essence of spring. This period, celebrated in folklore, offers a rich tapestry of sayings in Spain that reflect its meteorological diversity.

Among the most popular is: ‘Unruly February, windy March and rainy April, bring out flowery and beautiful May’. This adage underscores how the preceding months’ weather patterns foster the blooming landscapes typical of May.

Seasonal predictions and precautions

Another widely recognised saying, ‘When March is Maying, May is Marching’, suggests an unusual warmth in March could lead to a colder May. Such sayings, though lacking scientific backing, are rooted in generational observations of the environment.

The cautionary ‘Until May 40, don’t take off your coat’ highlights the unpredictable nature of spring. It serves as a witty reminder to be prepared for sudden chills, even as the calendar approaches summer.

Variations of this proverb emphasise the importance of keeping warm garments at hand throughout May and sometimes even into June.

Agricultural and floral insights

Turning to the agricultural aspect, May’s weather is crucial for crops. The proverb ‘Water in May, bread for the whole year’ links timely rainfall with abundant harvests, particularly grains.

Likewise, ‘May makes wheat and August makes wine’ connects specific months to pivotal agricultural milestones.

Floral sayings also bloom in May. ‘April brings flowers and May takes the honours’ attributes the beauty of May’s flowers to the nurturing rains of April.

Another saying, ‘The flowers of May brighten the spirit’, reflects the uplifting impact of May’s colourful blossoms on people’s moods.

In sum, these sayings from bygone days, whether they forecast weather, dictate wardrobe choices, or agricultural practices, weave a narrative that connects us to the rhythms of nature and the wisdom of our ancestors.

Whether or not they hold meteorological accuracy, they enrich the cultural tapestry of the season.

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Written by

John Ensor

Originally from Doncaster, Yorkshire, John now lives in Galicia, Northern Spain with his wife Nina. He is passionate about news, music, cycling and animals.


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