Calendar for Chinese 24 Solar Terms: Start of Summer

By Wu Chaolan, Zhang Wenjie, Xian Jiangnan (People's Daily Online) 08:59, May 05, 2022

The Start of Summer (Lixia) is the seventh of the 24 solar terms, succeeding Grain Rain (Guyu). As the name indicates, this solar term indicates the arrival of summer. The term came into being near the end of the Warring States Period (475-221BC).

From the Start of Summer, the days lengthen, temperatures rise and rainfall increases.



People believe that weighing themselves can ease the heat of summer, keep people healthy and bring good luck to children. As a result, the saying goes that on the Start of Summer you'd better weigh yourself to avoid bad luck.

Egg competition:

On the Start of Summer, parents put eggs into handmade colorful net bags. Children wear the bag around their necks and take part in a game with their friends. Both competitors try to hit the other person's egg, like conkers, and the egg that stays intact wins. The process continues until the only one left whole becomes the "king of eggs" while children who lose eat their eggs. It's believed that by eating eggs, children can enjoy an untroubled summer.

Food and drinks:

Taste fresh food on the Start of Summer:

In the southern part of the Yangtze River, it is said that three kinds of fresh food are to be eaten. Traditionally, these are cherry, plum and Reeves' shad. There are other variations of this rule: bamboo shoots, cherry and plum; cherry, plum and wheat berry; and bamboo shoot, cherry and broad beans. The gist of the different categories is that people should enjoy fresh food during this solar term.

In Jiangxi, people drink tea during the Start of Summer. Green tea is one of their favorites because it dispels heat. 

Start of Summer Rice:

It is popular in Guangxi to cook five different beans with rice. The beans are red, yellow, black and green while the rice is white. Thus, Start of Summer rice is also called Five-Colored Rice.

During the Start of Summer, it is essential to maintain a light diet. Vegetables and fruits are good choices while spicy and salty food should be avoided. People should remain calm and enjoy a variety of activities like painting, fishing and playing chess.


Calendar for Chinese 24 Solar Terms: Grain Rain

Calendar for Chinese 24 Solar Terms: Qingming

Calendar for Chinese 24 Solar Terms: Spring Equinox

Calendar for Chinese 24 Solar Terms: Awakening of Insects

(Web editor: Xian Jiangnan, Liang Jun)


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