Harvest Moon: The meaning behind September's Full Moon and why it's incredibly important

The Harvest Moon will take to the sky for a number of days: Here's everything to know and when to look up and bathe in her glow

Harvest Moon: The full moon and Japanese pampas grass. The harvest moon and Japanese pampas grass. The harvest moon and Japanese pampas grass. - stock photo
(Image credit: Beautiful Fireworks/Getty Images)

The Harvest Moon is the monicker given to September's Full Moon. This stunning lunation owes it name to a very special annual celebration - so what is the Harvest Moon's meaning?

Set bang in the middle of Virgo season 2022, the September Full Moon 2022 is also known as the Harvest Moon. Ceremonies and rituals are as old as time and for many, observing the likes of Full Moon rituals is an opportunity to reset and harness our true potential.

Historically, this lunation holds a special place in western culture owing to the month in which it falls - closing the summer season and seeing us reap all the bounty of the fertile months. Unlike other Full Moons, the Harvest Moon rises at nearly the same time, around sunset, for several evenings in a row and it's extra special as it's so close to the Fall Equinox.

Harvest Moon Meaning

Harvest Moon meaning: Stock photo

(Image credit: jimkruger/Getty Images)

Usually, each Full Moon name is given to the entire lunar month in which it occurs, covering all the Moon's phases. However, the Harvest Moon is slightly different - owing to the Fall Equinox.

Its name, according to the Farmer's Almanac, is given to the Full Moon nearest the Fall Equinox. This means that it can fall in either September or October, calendar date dependent. 

The Harvest Moon is especially exciting, as I previously mentioned, because it rises at nearly the same time, around sunset, for several evenings in a row - bathing each evening in a lunar glow. Owing to the fact that this bright moonlight provided extra light for farmers to harvest their crops before the first frosts set in, it became known as the Harvest Moon.

In Western astrology, each month's Full Moon gets its name from a combination of Native American, European, and Colonial American sources. The Harvest Moon follows August's Sturgeon Moon, July's Buck Moon, and other notable dates in the Moon Calendar 2022 which included the Wolf Moon, the Snow Moon, the Worm Moon, the Pink Moon, and the Strawberry Moon.

Aoife Hanna
Junior News Editor

Aoife is an Irish journalist and writer with a background in creative writing, comedy, and TV production.

Formerly woman&home's junior news editor and a contributing writer at Bustle, her words can be found in the Metro, Huffpost, Delicious, Imperica and EVOKE.

Her poetry features in the Queer Life, Queer Love anthology.

Outside of work you might bump into her at a garden center, charity shop, yoga studio, lifting heavy weights, or (most likely) supping/eating some sort of delicious drink/meal.