The Day of the Spike, or Thursday of the Spike, is a Portuguese Catholic celebration celebrated on Ascension Day, 39 days after Easter.
We begin with a morning walk in which ears of various cereals, leaves, and flowers are gathered to form a bouquet that one takes home.
This bouquet is composed of: Poppy, Cereal Spike, Vine, Rosemary, Marigold and Olive
The ears of corn should always be odd in number, and are the most important part of the bouquet, and can be wheat, rye, oats, or any other cereal. They represent bread, as the basis of family sustenance and fecundity.
The poppy with its vibrant color signifies love and life in this branch.
The marigold symbolizes wealth and earthly possessions in this branch. The white color represents silver and at the same time the yellow color represents gold.
The olive tree ends up having a double meaning in the spike branch, partly it represents peace, and at the same time light, and this light can be interpreted in the divine sense of it, divine wisdom.
Rosemary with its strong and lasting smell, and being a plant that can withstand almost anything, shows strength and endurance.
Last but not least, we have the vine associated with joy, also linked to wine that in Portuguese culture is so important.
However, with the increasing migration to large cities and industrialization, it became more and more difficult to fulfill this precept by itself, thus ending the National Holiday in 1952.
However, many municipalities, to make up for this fact have now kept it as a municipal holiday, as is the case of the Saloia region, especially Mafra since it keeps the holiday.