Beginning of Spring or "Lichun" in Chinese, the 1st solar term of the year, usually arrives around Feb 3-5. It lifts the curtain of spring. After that everything turns green and full of vigor, and people clearly see that the daytime is becoming longer and the weather is becoming warmer.
Spring comes early to hard-working farmers
Employees in cotton mill return to work in NW China’s Xinjiang
Rain Water or "Yushui", the 2nd term of the year, usually arrives around Feb 18-20. It signals the increase in rainfall and rise in temperature. With its arrival, lively spring-like scenery starts blossoming: the river water defreezes, wild geese move from south to north, and trees and grass turn green again.
Farmers are busy in ecological farm in Urumqi City, northwest China’s Xinjiang
Spring scenery of Karakash River in Hotan Prefecture, NW China’s Xinjiang
Awakening of Insects or "Jingzhe" usually arrives around March 5-7. It signals a rise in temperature and increased rainfall. As the 3rd solar term in the year, its name alludes to the fact that animals sleeping in winter are awakened by spring thunder and that the earth begins to come back to life. It is the key time for spring agricultural activities.
Spring Equinox or "Chunfen", the 4th term of the year, usually arrives around March 20 -22. It signals the equal length of the day and night time. On the day of the Spring Equinox, sun is directly above the equator.
Qingming, meaning clear and bright, is the 5th solar term of the year, and it usually arrives around April 4-6. The two main activities over the solar term include tomb sweeping and going on a spring outing. Tomb sweeping aims to commemorate family ancestors while going on a spring outing allows everyone the chance to enjoy the beautiful scenery and enjoy the season.
Xinjiang 7 Days’ Images: Enjoy the spring time
Villagers are busy in the vegetable greenhouse of Ruoqiang County, NW China’s Xinjiang
Grain Rain or "Guyu", is the 6th solar term, making it the last term of spring. The term usually arrives around April 19-21. It signals the end of cold weather and a rapid rise in temperature. It originates from the old saying, "Rain brings the growth of hundreds of grains," which shows that this period of rainfall is crucial for crops. Grain Rain brings a marked increase in temperature and precipitation.
As the ice melts, a spectacular ‘wind-accumulated iceberg’ is seen in the Ulungur Lake, NW China’s Xinjiang
An invitation from Yengisar County: Welcome to enjoy apricots in late June
Grain Buds or "Xiaoman" is the 8th of the 24 solar terms and the 2nd solar term of summer. It usually arrives around May 20-22. As its name suggests, it is the period of time when grains are beginning to ripen, but are not quite fully there yet. In terms of climate, during the Grain Buds period, the climate is hot, humid and rainy.
Grain in Ear is the 9th of the 24 solar terms and the 3rd solar term of summer, indicating the beginning of midsummer. Grain in Ear, pronounced "Mang Zhong" in Chinese, literally means "awned wheat should be harvested quickly, awned rice can be planted". "Mang" is homophonic to the word "busy" in Chinese, indicating that all crops are "busy planting".
The Summer Solstice or “Xiazhi” in Chinese, usually arrives around June 21-22. It is the 10th of the 24 solar terms and the 4th solar term of summer. It begins when the Northern Hemisphere sees the longest day of sunlight during the year, but a day that is not yet the hottest.
Minor Heat, or “Xiaoshu” in Chinese, is the 11th solar term of the year. It usually arrives around July 6-8. Minor Heat signifies the hottest period is coming but the extreme hot point has yet to arrive. During Minor Heat, farmers are devoted themselves to field management. Crops like mung bean, kidney bean, peanut and so on are growing now, and people water and also prevent the injurious insect.
Major Heat or "Dashu" in Chinese, is the 12th solar term. It usually arrives around July 22-24, and signals that most parts of China have entered the hottest season of the year. In classical Chinese, the character "Shu" was compared to "boiling", delivering an image that the earth is like a pot of boiling water during this time period.
The Start of Autumn or “Liqiu”, is the 13th solar term. It usually arrives around August 7-9, and the arrival of the Start of Autumn indicates the end of summer and the beginning of a fruitful autumn. Although the Start of Autumn symbolizes the approach of fall, it's not to say that the hot summer days have come to an end. After the Start of Autumn, the warm weather will last for another 30 days, giving this solar term the alternative name "Autumn Tiger."
End of Heat or "Chushu", usually arrives around on August 22-24. As the 14th of the 24 solar terms, it reflects the end of the hot summer period. The Chushu period will witness a change in temperature, as China starts to cool down for autumn. During this time, it will still be hot during the day but cooler in the mornings and evenings.
White Dew, or “Bailu” in Chinese, usually arrives around September 7-9. As the 15th solar term of the year, White Dew indicates the real beginning of cool autumn. The temperature declines gradually and vapors in the air often condense into white dew on the grass and trees at night.
Autumn Equinox, or “Qiufen” in Chinese, is the 16th of the 24 solar terms. It usually arrives around September 22-24. During this period, autumn colors can be seen in many parts of China. Qiufen is the midpoint of autumn. From here on, days will be shorter and nights will be longer in the Northern Hemisphere.
The Start of Winter, or "Lidong" in Chinese, arrives around November 7-8. It is the first solar term of winter, which means winter is coming and crops harvested in autumn should be stored up. There is a saying in China: "Eat dumplings on the Start of Winter, or your ears will be frostbitten."
Major Snow, or "Daxue" in Chinese, is the 21st solar term and the 3rd solar term of winter. It usually arrives around December 6-8. Major Snow indicates the start of the midwinter season. As its name implies, Major Snow reflects the phenomenon of precipitation, indicating the time and intensity of snowfall. During this period, the weather gets colder, and the days become shorter.
Winter Solstice or "Dongzhi" is the 22nd of the 24 solar terms. It usually arrives around December 21-23. The tropic of Capricorn is directly under the sun on this day, so it is the shortest day of the year in the northern hemisphere. After the Winter Solstice, the days start to become longer.
Minor cold or “Xiaohan” in Chinese, the 23rd of 24 solar term, usually arrives around January 5-7. This solar term welcomes China's coldest days, known as the Sanjiu period. During this solar term, Chinese people begin preparing for the Spring Festival by writing Spring Festival couplets, making paper decorations for window decoration, and buying lanterns and firecrackers.
Major Cold, or “Dahan” in Chinese, is the last of the 24 solar terms. It usually arrives around January 20-21. During this period, snow, rain and icy cold weather have a big influence on people's lives. During Major Cold, people will prepare for New Year by making Spring Festival couplets, preparing sacrifices, swapping old things with new ones and salting meats.
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