Updated on April 9, 2019
Debunking an April Proverb
“Whan that Aprill, with his shoures soote The droghte of March hath perced to the roote.”
Another version is traced to the 1557 collection of writings by Thomas Tusser, A Hundred Good Points of Husbandry. He wrote:
“Sweet April showers
Do spring May flowers”
Tusser’s rhyme is a couplet, which fits nicely with our thoughts about poetry in National Poetry Month.
But, if you’re like me, you might wonder if April rains truly bring May flowers.
Botany and biology research says there is no connection. Instead, flowers’ first appearance relates more to temperature than to rain.
That being true, perhaps, the couplet should be re-written to read
“Warm temperatures in March bring April flowers.”
Doesn’t have the same poetic ring, does it?