Crataegus
Overview
Crataegus commonly called hawthorn or thornapple, is a large genus of shrub
Shrub
A shrub or bush is distinguished from a tree by its multiple stems and shorter height, usually under 5–6 m tall. A large number of plants may become either shrubs or trees, depending on the growing conditions they experience...

s and tree
Tree
A tree is a perennial woody plant. It is most often defined as a woody plant that has many secondary branches supported clear of the ground on a single main stem or trunk with clear apical dominance. A minimum height specification at maturity is cited by some authors, varying from 3 m to...

s in the rose
Rose
A rose is a woody perennial of the genus Rosa, within the family Rosaceae. There are over 100 species. They form a group of erect shrubs, and climbing or trailing plants, with stems that are often armed with sharp prickles. Flowers are large and showy, in colours ranging from white through yellows...

 family, Rosaceae
Rosaceae
Rosaceae are a medium-sized family of flowering plants, including about 2830 species in 95 genera. The name is derived from the type genus Rosa. Among the largest genera are Alchemilla , Sorbus , Crataegus , Cotoneaster , and Rubus...

, native to temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere
Northern Hemisphere
The Northern Hemisphere is the half of a planet that is north of its equator—the word hemisphere literally means “half sphere”. It is also that half of the celestial sphere north of the celestial equator...

 in Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

, Asia
Asia
Asia is the world's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the eastern and northern hemispheres. It covers 8.7% of the Earth's total surface area and with approximately 3.879 billion people, it hosts 60% of the world's current human population...

 and North America
North America
North America is a continent wholly within the Northern Hemisphere and almost wholly within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered a northern subcontinent of the Americas...

. The name hawthorn was originally applied to the species native to northern Europe, especially the Common Hawthorn
Common Hawthorn
Crataegus monogyna, known as common hawthorn or single-seeded hawthorn, is a species of hawthorn native to Europe, northwest Africa and western Asia. It has been introduced in many other parts of the world where it is an invasive weed...

 C. monogyna, and the unmodified name is often so used in Britain
Great Britain
Great Britain or Britain is an island situated to the northwest of Continental Europe. It is the ninth largest island in the world, and the largest European island, as well as the largest of the British Isles...

 and Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

. However the name is now also applied to the entire genus, and also to the related Asian genus Rhaphiolepis
Rhaphiolepis
Rhaphiolepis syn. Raphiolepis Lindl.) is a genus of about 15 species of evergreen shrubs and small trees in the family Rosaceae, native to warm temperate and subtropical eastern and southeastern Asia, from southern Japan, southern Korea and southern China south to Thailand and Vietnam. The genus is...

.

They are shrub
Shrub
A shrub or bush is distinguished from a tree by its multiple stems and shorter height, usually under 5–6 m tall. A large number of plants may become either shrubs or trees, depending on the growing conditions they experience...

s or small tree
Tree
A tree is a perennial woody plant. It is most often defined as a woody plant that has many secondary branches supported clear of the ground on a single main stem or trunk with clear apical dominance. A minimum height specification at maturity is cited by some authors, varying from 3 m to...

s, mostly growing to 5–15 m tall, with small pome
Pome
In botany, a pome is a type of fruit produced by flowering plants in the subfamily Maloideae of the family Rosaceae.A pome is an accessory fruit composed of one or more carpels surrounded by accessory tissue...

 fruit
Fruit
In broad terms, a fruit is a structure of a plant that contains its seeds.The term has different meanings dependent on context. In non-technical usage, such as food preparation, fruit normally means the fleshy seed-associated structures of certain plants that are sweet and edible in the raw state,...

 and (usually) thorny branches.
Encyclopedia
Crataegus commonly called hawthorn or thornapple, is a large genus of shrub
Shrub
A shrub or bush is distinguished from a tree by its multiple stems and shorter height, usually under 5–6 m tall. A large number of plants may become either shrubs or trees, depending on the growing conditions they experience...

s and tree
Tree
A tree is a perennial woody plant. It is most often defined as a woody plant that has many secondary branches supported clear of the ground on a single main stem or trunk with clear apical dominance. A minimum height specification at maturity is cited by some authors, varying from 3 m to...

s in the rose
Rose
A rose is a woody perennial of the genus Rosa, within the family Rosaceae. There are over 100 species. They form a group of erect shrubs, and climbing or trailing plants, with stems that are often armed with sharp prickles. Flowers are large and showy, in colours ranging from white through yellows...

 family, Rosaceae
Rosaceae
Rosaceae are a medium-sized family of flowering plants, including about 2830 species in 95 genera. The name is derived from the type genus Rosa. Among the largest genera are Alchemilla , Sorbus , Crataegus , Cotoneaster , and Rubus...

, native to temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere
Northern Hemisphere
The Northern Hemisphere is the half of a planet that is north of its equator—the word hemisphere literally means “half sphere”. It is also that half of the celestial sphere north of the celestial equator...

 in Europe
Europe
Europe is, by convention, one of the world's seven continents. Comprising the westernmost peninsula of Eurasia, Europe is generally 'divided' from Asia to its east by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways connecting...

, Asia
Asia
Asia is the world's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the eastern and northern hemispheres. It covers 8.7% of the Earth's total surface area and with approximately 3.879 billion people, it hosts 60% of the world's current human population...

 and North America
North America
North America is a continent wholly within the Northern Hemisphere and almost wholly within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered a northern subcontinent of the Americas...

. The name hawthorn was originally applied to the species native to northern Europe, especially the Common Hawthorn
Common Hawthorn
Crataegus monogyna, known as common hawthorn or single-seeded hawthorn, is a species of hawthorn native to Europe, northwest Africa and western Asia. It has been introduced in many other parts of the world where it is an invasive weed...

 C. monogyna, and the unmodified name is often so used in Britain
Great Britain
Great Britain or Britain is an island situated to the northwest of Continental Europe. It is the ninth largest island in the world, and the largest European island, as well as the largest of the British Isles...

 and Ireland
Ireland
Ireland is an island to the northwest of continental Europe. It is the third-largest island in Europe and the twentieth-largest island on Earth...

. However the name is now also applied to the entire genus, and also to the related Asian genus Rhaphiolepis
Rhaphiolepis
Rhaphiolepis syn. Raphiolepis Lindl.) is a genus of about 15 species of evergreen shrubs and small trees in the family Rosaceae, native to warm temperate and subtropical eastern and southeastern Asia, from southern Japan, southern Korea and southern China south to Thailand and Vietnam. The genus is...

.

They are shrub
Shrub
A shrub or bush is distinguished from a tree by its multiple stems and shorter height, usually under 5–6 m tall. A large number of plants may become either shrubs or trees, depending on the growing conditions they experience...

s or small tree
Tree
A tree is a perennial woody plant. It is most often defined as a woody plant that has many secondary branches supported clear of the ground on a single main stem or trunk with clear apical dominance. A minimum height specification at maturity is cited by some authors, varying from 3 m to...

s, mostly growing to 5–15 m tall, with small pome
Pome
In botany, a pome is a type of fruit produced by flowering plants in the subfamily Maloideae of the family Rosaceae.A pome is an accessory fruit composed of one or more carpels surrounded by accessory tissue...

 fruit
Fruit
In broad terms, a fruit is a structure of a plant that contains its seeds.The term has different meanings dependent on context. In non-technical usage, such as food preparation, fruit normally means the fleshy seed-associated structures of certain plants that are sweet and edible in the raw state,...

 and (usually) thorny branches. The most common type of bark is smooth grey in young individuals, developing shallow longitudinal fissures with narrow ridges in older trees. The thorns are small sharp-tipped branches that arise either from other branches or from the trunk, and are typically 1–3 cm long (recorded as up to 11.5 cm in one casepage 97). The leaves grow spirally arranged on long shoots, and in clusters on spur shoots on the branches or twigs. The leaves of most species have lobed or serrate margins and are somewhat variable in shape. The fruit, sometimes known as a "haw", is berry
Berry
The botanical definition of a berry is a fleshy fruit produced from a single ovary. Grapes are an example. The berry is the most common type of fleshy fruit in which the entire ovary wall ripens into an edible pericarp. They may have one or more carpels with a thin covering and fleshy interiors....

-like, but structurally a pome
Pome
In botany, a pome is a type of fruit produced by flowering plants in the subfamily Maloideae of the family Rosaceae.A pome is an accessory fruit composed of one or more carpels surrounded by accessory tissue...

 containing from 1 to 5 pyrene
Pyrena
Pyrena or pyrene is the name for a nutlet resembling a seed, or the kernel of a drupe or drupelet....

s that resemble the "stones" of plum
Plum
A plum or gage is a stone fruit tree in the genus Prunus, subgenus Prunus. The subgenus is distinguished from other subgenera in the shoots having a terminal bud and solitary side buds , the flowers in groups of one to five together on short stems, and the fruit having a groove running down one...

s, peach
Peach
The peach tree is a deciduous tree growing to tall and 6 in. in diameter, belonging to the subfamily Prunoideae of the family Rosaceae. It bears an edible juicy fruit called a peach...

es, etc. which are drupaceous
Drupe
In botany, a drupe is a fruit in which an outer fleshy part surrounds a shell of hardened endocarp with a seed inside. These fruits develop from a single carpel, and mostly from flowers with superior ovaries...

 fruit in the same subfamily
Family (biology)
In biological classification, family is* a taxonomic rank. Other well-known ranks are life, domain, kingdom, phylum, class, order, genus, and species, with family fitting between order and genus. As for the other well-known ranks, there is the option of an immediately lower rank, indicated by the...

.

Hawthorns provide food and shelter for many species of bird
Bird
Birds are feathered, winged, bipedal, endothermic , egg-laying, vertebrate animals. Around 10,000 living species and 188 families makes them the most speciose class of tetrapod vertebrates. They inhabit ecosystems across the globe, from the Arctic to the Antarctic. Extant birds range in size from...

s and mammal
Mammal
Mammals are members of a class of air-breathing vertebrate animals characterised by the possession of endothermy, hair, three middle ear bones, and mammary glands functional in mothers with young...

s, and the flower
Flower
A flower, sometimes known as a bloom or blossom, is the reproductive structure found in flowering plants . The biological function of a flower is to effect reproduction, usually by providing a mechanism for the union of sperm with eggs...

s are important for many nectar-feeding insect
Insect
Insects are a class of living creatures within the arthropods that have a chitinous exoskeleton, a three-part body , three pairs of jointed legs, compound eyes, and two antennae...

s. Hawthorns are also used as food plants by the larva
Larva
A larva is a distinct juvenile form many animals undergo before metamorphosis into adults. Animals with indirect development such as insects, amphibians, or cnidarians typically have a larval phase of their life cycle...

e of a large number of Lepidoptera
Lepidoptera
Lepidoptera is a large order of insects that includes moths and butterflies . It is one of the most widespread and widely recognizable insect orders in the world, encompassing moths and the three superfamilies of butterflies, skipper butterflies, and moth-butterflies...

 species; see List of Lepidoptera that feed on hawthorns. Haws are important for wildlife
Wildlife
Wildlife includes all non-domesticated plants, animals and other organisms. Domesticating wild plant and animal species for human benefit has occurred many times all over the planet, and has a major impact on the environment, both positive and negative....

 in winter, particularly thrushes
Thrush (bird)
The thrushes, family Turdidae, are a group of passerine birds that occur worldwide.-Characteristics:Thrushes are plump, soft-plumaged, small to medium-sized birds, inhabiting wooded areas, and often feed on the ground or eat small fruit. The smallest thrush may be the Forest Rock-thrush, at and...

 and waxwing
Waxwing
The waxwings form the genus Bombycilla of passerine birds. According to most authorities, this is the only genus placed in the family Bombycillidae.-Description:Waxwings are characterised by soft silky plumage...

s; these birds eat the haws and disperse the seed
Seed
A seed is a small embryonic plant enclosed in a covering called the seed coat, usually with some stored food. It is the product of the ripened ovule of gymnosperm and angiosperm plants which occurs after fertilization and some growth within the mother plant...

s in their droppings.

Many species and hybrids are used as ornamental
Ornamental plant
Ornamental plants are plants that are grown for decorative purposes in gardens and landscape design projects, as house plants, for cut flowers and specimen display...

 and street trees. The Common Hawthorn is extensively used in Europe as a hedge plant. Several cultivar
Cultivar
A cultivar'Cultivar has two meanings as explained under Formal definition. When used in reference to a taxon, the word does not apply to an individual plant but to all those plants sharing the unique characteristics that define the cultivar. is a plant or group of plants selected for desirable...

s of the Midland Hawthorn C. laevigata have been selected for their pink or red flowers. Hawthorns are among the trees most recommended for water conservation landscapes.

Taxonomy

The number of species
Species
In biology, a species is one of the basic units of biological classification and a taxonomic rank. A species is often defined as a group of organisms capable of interbreeding and producing fertile offspring. While in many cases this definition is adequate, more precise or differing measures are...

 in the genus depends on taxonomic interpretation. Some botanists in the past recognised a thousand or more species, many of which are apomictic microspecies
Apomixis
In botany, apomixis was defined by Winkler as replacement of the normal sexual reproduction by asexual reproduction, without fertilization. This definition notably does not mention meiosis...

. It is estimated that a reasonable number is 200 species, but it is not yet clear how many species should be recognized because "a large portion of the synonymy
Synonym (taxonomy)
In scientific nomenclature, a synonym is a scientific name that is or was used for a taxon of organisms that also goes by a different scientific name. For example, Linnaeus was the first to give a scientific name to the Norway spruce, which he called Pinus abies...

, especially in North American Crataegus, has not been worked out."

Selected species

  • Crataegus aemula
    Crataegus aemula
    Crataegus aemula, the Rome Hawthorn, is a poorly known species of hawthorn that might be allied with series Silvicolae. It is endemic to the Southern United States, in North America.-Distribution:...

    - Rome Hawthorn
  • Crataegus aestivalis - May Hawthorn
  • Crataegus altaica
    Crataegus altaica
    Crataegus altaica is a species of hawthorn. It is consideredto be a synonym of C. wattiana....

    - Altai Hawthorn
  • Crataegus ambigua
    Crataegus ambigua
    Crataegus ambigua is a species of thorn native to Western Asia and Eastern Europe, including Armenia, Iran, Russia, and Turkey. It grows as a shrub or tree up to about 12 m in height...

    - Russian Hawthorn
  • Crataegus ambitiosa
    Crataegus ambitiosa
    Crataegus ambitiosa, the Grand Rapids Hawthorn, is a species of hawthorn endemic to Michigan, in the Great Lakes region of North America....

    - Grand Rapids Hawthorn
  • Crataegus anamesa
    Crataegus anamesa
    Crataegus anamesa, the Fort Bend Hawthorn, is a species of hawthorn that is endemic to Texas, in North America....

    - Fort Bend Hawthorn
  • Crataegus ancisa
    Crataegus ancisa
    Crataegus ancisa, the Mississippi Hawthorn, is a species of hawthorn that grows as a shrub or tree, and is endemic to the Southern United States, in North America....

    - Mississippi Hawthorn
  • Crataegus annosa
    Crataegus annosa
    Crataegus annosa is a poorly known species of hawthorn that is endemic to Alabama, and first recorded from Russell County there, in the Southern United States of North America.-Taxonomy:...

    - Phoenix City Hawthorn
  • Crataegus apiomorpha
    Crataegus apiomorpha
    Crataegus apiomorpha is a species of hawthorn.-References and external links:*...

    - Fort Sheridan Hawthorn
  • Crataegus aprica
    Crataegus aprica
    Crataegus aprica is a species of hawthorn native to the southeastern US. It is a bush with small leaves and fruit that go through an apricot-coloured stage before becoming red.-References and external links:*...

    - Sunny Hawthorn
  • Crataegus arborea
    Crataegus arborea
    Crataegus arborea, the Montgomery hawthorn, is a species of hawthorn of a shrub or tree size, native to the eastern United States in North America.-Distribution:...

    - Montgomery Hawthorn
  • Crataegus arcana
    Crataegus arcana
    Crataegus arcana, the Carolina Hawthorn, is a poorly known species of hawthorn that grows as a shrub or tree and is endemic to the eastern United States in North America. It is thought to be allied with series Pruinosae.-Distribution:...

    - Carolina Hawthorn
  • Crataegus ater
    Crataegus ater
    Crataegus ater, known as the Nashville Hawthorn, is a species of hawthorn that grows as a shrub or tree, native to the Great Lakes region of North America.-Distribution:...

    - Nashville Hawthorn
  • Crataegus austromontana
    Crataegus austromontana
    Crataegus austromontana, commonly known as the Valley Head Hawthorn, is a very rare species of hawthorn. It grows as a shrub or tree, and is endemic to the Southern United States in North America....

    - Valley Head Hawthorn
  • Crataegus azarolus
    Crataegus azarolus
    Crataegus azarolus is a species of hawthorn known by the common names azarole, mosphilla, and Mediterranean medlar. It is native to the Mediterranean Basin and it is grown there and elsewhere as an ornamental tree and for its fruit. It has been used historically for a number of medicinal purposes.C...

    - Azarole Hawthorn
  • Crataegus berberifolia
    Crataegus berberifolia
    Crataegus berberifolia is a species of hawthorn from the southeastern U.S. There are two varieties, C. berberifolia var. berberifolia has 20 stamens with cream-coloured anthers, and C. berberifolia var. engelmanii has 10 stamens with purplish pink anthers.-References and external links:*...

  • Crataegus biltmoreana
    Crataegus biltmoreana
    Crataegus biltmoreana is a species of hawthorn native to the Southeastern U.S. It is one of many hawthorn species named by Chauncey Delos Beadle when he worked at the Biltmore Estate. The fruit are green, yellow, or orange. It is sometimes considered to be a synonym of C. intricata....

  • Crataegus boyntonii
    Crataegus boyntonii
    Crataegus boyntonii is a species of hawthorn native to the Southeastern U.S. Its fruit are "yellow-green flushed with red". It is sometimes considered to be a synonym of Crataegus intricata....

  • Crataegus brachyacantha
    Crataegus brachyacantha
    Crataegus brachyacantha is one of the "black-fruited" species of hawthorn, but it is only very distantly related to the other black-fruited species such as C. douglasii or C. nigra. The common name "Blueberry haw" refers to the appearance of the fruit, which are almost blue, and not to their taste...

    - Blueberry Haw
  • Crataegus calpodendron
    Crataegus calpodendron
    Crataegus calpodendron is a species of hawthorn native to much of the eastern US and to Ontario, Canada. The common name late hawthorn refers to the flowering time, which is later than most North American hawthorns.-References and external links:...

    - Late Hawthorn
  • Crataegus canbyi
    Crataegus canbyi
    Crataegus canbyi is a hawthorn that is sometimes considered to be a synonym of C. crus-galli....

  • Crataegus chlorosarca
    Crataegus chlorosarca
    Crataegus chlorosarca is an Asian species of hawthorn with black fruit. Although recommended as an ornamental and hardy in cold climates, it is rarely cultivated....

  • Crataegus chrysocarpa
    Crataegus chrysocarpa
    Crataegus chrysocarpa is a species of hawthorn that is native to much of the continental US and Canada. Common names fireberry hawthorn and goldenberry hawthorn, as well as the scientific name all refer to the colour of the unripe fruit, although the mature fruit is red.Three varieties C....

  • Crataegus coccinea
    Crataegus coccinea
    Crataegus coccinea is a species of Hawthorn around which there is considerable confusion because the name has been misapplied for a long time. It has been shown to be the same as C. pedicellata, and under the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature, that older name Crataegus coccinea (common...

  • Crataegus coccinioides
    Crataegus coccinioides
    Crataegus coccinioides is a species of hawthorn known by the common name Kansas hawthorn. C. coccinioides is native to Kansas, to New England, and the southernmost parts of Ontario and Quebec. It has large flowers and leaves and fruit that appear pinkish until polished to reveal the red colour...

  • Crataegus collina
    Crataegus collina
    Crataegus collina is a type of hawthorn that is closely related to C. punctata, the dotted hawthorn, and sometimes considered to be the same species. A sample of C. collina and C. punctata has suggested that C. collina is polyploid, and C...

  • Crataegus columbiana
    Crataegus columbiana
    The name Crataegus columbiana is a source of considerable confusion. The species named by Howell is now considered to be the same as C. douglasii, named earlier, and the earlier name should be used instead. However, some varieties of C. columbiana have also been named that are not related to C....

  • Crataegus compta
    Crataegus compta
    Crataegus compta is a hawthorn native to the northeastern U.S. and southeastern Canada.-References and external links:*...

  • Crataegus crus-galli
    Crataegus crus-galli
    Crataegus crus-galli is a species of hawthorn known by the common names cockspur hawthorn and cockspur thorn. It is native to eastern North America from Ontario to Texas to Florida, and it is widely used in horticulture. This is a small tree growing up to about 10 meters tall and 8 meters wide,...

    - Cockspur Thorn
  • Crataegus cuneata
    Crataegus cuneata
    Crataegus cuneata is a species of hawthorn known by the common names Chinese hawthorn or Japanese hawthorn. It is native to China, and is widely cultivated in Japan. It is used for bonsai. The fruit can be red or yellow....

    - Japanese Hawthorn
  • Crataegus cupulifera
    Crataegus cupulifera
    Crataegus cupulifera is a hawthorn. The name is considered to be a synonym of C. scabrida var. egglestoni....

  • Crataegus dahurica
    Crataegus dahurica
    Crataegus dahurica is a species of hawthorn native to northeastern Asia. It is closely related to C. sanguinea.-References and external links:**...

  • Crataegus douglasii
    Crataegus douglasii
    Crataegus douglasii is a North American species of hawthorn known by the common names black hawthorn and Douglas' thornapple. It is named after David Douglas, who collected seed from the plant during his botanical explorations....

    - Black Hawthorn, Douglas hawthorn
  • Crataegus ellwangeriana
    Crataegus ellwangeriana
    Crataegus ellwangeriana is a hawthorn that is not yet well understood. It is sometimes considered to be a synonym of C. pedicellata, and therefore a synonym of C. coccinea, which would place it in series Coccineae. A study concluded, however, that C. ellwangeriana should not be included in series...

  • Crataegus erythropoda
    Crataegus erythropoda
    Crataegus erythropoda is a hawthorn native to the southern Rocky Mountains in the U.S. The leaves are conspicuously shiny above and fruit are dark purplish red. It is seldom cultivated, but at one time was listed in the nursery trade under the common name "Chocolate Haw". It is closely related to C...

  • Crataegus flabellata
    Crataegus flabellata
    Crataegus flabellata is a species of hawthorn known by the common name fanleaf hawthorn. It is native to the northeastern U.S. and adjacent Canada. It is intermediate in appearance between C. macrosperma and C. chrysocarpa. C. macrosperma, which occurs throughout the range of C. flabellata and also...

  • Crataegus flava
    Crataegus flava
    Crataegus flava, summer haw, yellow-fruited thorn is a very rare species of hawthorn that was long known in cultivation in England but apparently is no longer grown. Unfortunately, due to an error by Sargent the name C. flava was, and often still is, used for a different species C. lacrimata, which...

    - Yellow-fruited Hawthorn
  • Crataegus fontanesiana
    Crataegus fontanesiana
    J.B. Phipps has shown that Crataegus fontanesiana are "somewhat narrow-leaved forms of C. calpodendron". The name was mis-applied for much of the 19th and 20th centuries to some forms of C. crus-galli....

  • Crataegus harbisonii
    Crataegus harbisonii
    Crataegus harbisonii is a species of hawthorn that was originally described from Nashville, Tennessee, and is closely related to C. ashei. Currently, only one individual is known to survive in the wild, but the species has been taken into cultivation. It forms a vigorous shrub to 8 m in height...

  • Crataegus heldreichii
    Crataegus heldreichii
    Crataegus heldreichii is a species of hawthorn with red fruit that is native to Europe....

  • Crataegus heterophylla - Various-leaved Hawthorn
  • Crataegus holmesiana
    Crataegus holmesiana
    Crataegus holmesiana is a species of hawthorn that is closely related to Scarlet Hawthorn, C. coccinea , but with more elongated fruit and leaves.-References and external links:***...

  • Crataegus hupehensis
    Crataegus hupehensis
    Crataegus hupehensis is an Asian species of hawthorn that can grow to be a substantial tree. It is similar to C. pinnatifida var. major, but with less pronounced lobes on the leaves....

  • Crataegus intricata
    Crataegus intricata
    Crataegus intricata is a species of hawthorn known by the common names Copenhagen hawthorn and thicket hawthorn. It is native to eastern Canada and the eastern United States. Its fruit are brown to red.-References and external links:* **...

    - Thicket Hawthorn, Intricate Hawthorn
  • Crataegus iracunda
    Crataegus iracunda
    Crataegus iracunda is a species of hawthorn, sometimes called the stolonbearing hawthorn. It was described in 1899 by Chauncey Delos Beadle of the Biltmore Herbarium in North Carolina.- External links :...

  • Crataegus jackii
    Crataegus jackii
    Crataegus jackii is a hawthorn that is restricted to southern Quebec. It is related to and has been considered to be a synonym of C. chrysocarpa, but is very hairy, with larger flowers, and has been made a synonym of C. lumaria Ashe....

  • Crataegus jonesae
    Crataegus jonesae
    Crataegus jonesae is a species of hawthorn native to New England.....

  • Crataegus laevigata - Midland Hawthorn- English Hawthorn
  • Crataegus lepida
    Crataegus lepida
    Crataegus lepida is the smallest of the hawthorn species in series Lacrimatae, the "weeping hawthorns", of the southeastern U.S.. It blooms when less than 1 m tall and has great potential as a garden plant....

  • Crataegus macrosperma
    Crataegus macrosperma
    Crataegus macrosperma is a species of hawthorn native to most of the eastern U.S. and adjacent Canada, though uncommon at lower altitudes in the south. It is sometimes misidentified as C. flabellata.-References and external links:*...

  • Crataegus marshallii
    Crataegus marshallii
    Crataegus marshallii is a species of hawthorn known by the common name parsley haw. It is native to the southeastern U.S.The leaves of C. marshallii are finely dissected and decorative. The dainty flowers, small red fruit, and beautiful bark add to the ornamental value of this...

    - Parsley-leaved Hawthorn
  • Crataegus maximowiczii
    Crataegus maximowiczii
    Crataegus maximowiczii is a species of hawthorn with fruit that are red to purple-black....

  • Crataegus mercerensis
    Crataegus mercerensis
    Crataegus mercerensis is a hawthorn that is considered to be a synonym of either C. chrysocarpa or of C. dodgei....

  • Crataegus mexicana
    Crataegus mexicana
    Crataegus mexicana is a species of hawthorn known by the common names tejocote, manzanita, tejocotera and Mexican hawthorn. It is native to the mountains of Mexico and parts of Guatemala, and has been introduced elsewhere in the Andes. The fruit of this species is one of the most useful among...

    - tejocote,
  • Crataegus mollis
    Crataegus mollis
    Crataegus mollis, known as Downy Hawthorn or Red Hawthorn, occurs in eastern North America from southeastern North Dakota east to Nova Scotia and southwest to eastern Texas. This tree inhabits wooded bottomlands, the prairie border, and the midwest savanna understorey.This tree grows to 10–13 m...

    - Downy Hawthorn
  • Crataegus monogyna - Common Hawthorn
  • Crataegus nigra
    Crataegus nigra
    Crataegus nigra is a black-fruited species of hawthorn native to Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Albania and Yugoslavia. The fruit, which is up to 10 mm across, can be consumed fresh or cooked....

    - Hungarian Hawthorn
  • Crataegus okanaganensis
    Crataegus okanaganensis
    Crataegus okanaganensis is a species of hawthorn native to western British Columbia, Washington state and Montana. It forms a vigorous shrub to 8 m in height with brilliant red fruit in late summer, that later ripen to "burgundy to deep purple ". It has potential as an ornamental plant....

  • Crataegus orientalis
    Crataegus orientalis
    Crataegus orientalis is a species of hawthorn native to the Mediterranean region, Turkey, Caucasia, Crimea, and western Iran, with fruits that are orange or various shades of red....

  • Crataegus pedicellata
    Crataegus pedicellata
    Crataegus pedicellata is a name for a species of Hawthorn that has been shown to be the same as C. coccinea L., common name "Scarlet Hawthorn". Under the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature, the older name should be used. Considerable confusion persists, however, because the name C...

    - Scarlet Hawthorn
  • Crataegus pentagyna
    Crataegus pentagyna
    Crataegus pentagyna, also called small-flowered black hawthorn, is a species of hawthorn native to southeastern Europe. Two subspecies are recognized, C. p. subsp. pentagyna and C. p. subsp. pseudomelanocarpa. The fruit are usually black, but are sometimes a handsome purple.-References and external...

  • Crataegus peregrina
    Crataegus peregrina
    Crataegus peregrina is a species of hawthorn....

  • Crataegus phaenopyrum
    Crataegus phaenopyrum
    Crataegus phaenopyrum is a species of hawthorn commonly known as Washington Hawthorn or Washington Thorn. It is widely grown as an ornamental plant, and can reach 10 m in height. The small red berry-like fruit grow closely together in large clusters and are food for squirrels and birds. They have a...

    - Washington Hawthorn
  • Crataegus phippsii
    Crataegus phippsii
    Crataegus phippsii is a species of hawthorn native to western British Columbia, Washington state and Montana. It forms a shrub or small tree to 7 m in height with leaves that have white hair on the underside, and fruit that ripen through red to purplish black. It appears to have potential as an...

  • Crataegus pinnatifida
    Crataegus pinnatifida
    Crataegus pinnatifida, also known as Chinese hawthorn or shānzhā , refers to a small to a medium-sized tree as well as the fruit of the tree. The fruit is bright red, 1.5 inches in diameter.-Culinary use:...

    - Chinese Hawthorn
  • Crataegus pruinosa
    Crataegus pruinosa
    Crataegus pruinosa is a species of hawthorn known by the common name frosted hawthorn. It is native to a wide area of the eastern US and southern Canada, and is sometimes considered to be several species, rather than just one....

    - Frosted Hawthorn
  • Crataegus pulcherrima
    Crataegus pulcherrima
    Crataegus pulcherrima, whose name means "beautiful hawthorn" is a shrub up to 4 m tall, native to the southeastern U.S.. This species and those related to it that are classified in Crataegus series Pulcherrimae have been largely ignored since they were originally described in 1903, but warrant...

  • Crataegus punctata
    Crataegus punctata
    Crataegus punctata is a species of hawthorn known by the common names dotted hawthorn or white haw that is native to most of the eastern U.S. and eastern Canada. It is the state flower of Missouri....

    - Dotted Hawthorn, White Hawthorn: the state flower of Missouri
    Missouri
    Missouri is a US state located in the Midwestern United States, bordered by Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. With a 2010 population of 5,988,927, Missouri is the 18th most populous state in the nation and the fifth most populous in the Midwest. It...

    .
  • Crataegus putnamiana
    Crataegus putnamiana
    Crataegus putnamiana is a species of hawthorn....

  • Crataegus pycnoloba
    Crataegus pycnoloba
    Crataegus pycnoloba is a species of hawthorn native to the mountains of the northern and central Peloponnesus of Greece. The plant is a shrub or rarely a small tree. The fruit are red or dark reddish brown when immature, but later develop a yellow background colour....

  • Crataegus rhipidophylla
    Crataegus rhipidophylla
    Crataegus rhipidophylla is a species of hawthorn which occurs naturally from southern Scandinavia and the Baltic region to France, the Balkan Peninsula, Turkey, Caucasia, and Ukraine. It is poorly known as a landscape and garden plant, but seems to have potential for those uses. Two varieties are...

  • Crataegus rivularis
    Crataegus rivularis
    Crataegus rivularis is a species of hawthorn known by the common name river hawthorn. It is native to the intermontane region of the northwestern U.S., situated between the coastal ranges and the Rocky Mountains....

  • Crataegus saligna
    Crataegus saligna
    Crataegus saligna is a species of hawthorn known by the common name willow hawthorn that is seldom cultivated and rather rare in the wild. Its native range is wet areas of western Colorado and northeastern Utah. It is a handsome shrub or small tree with delicate-looking leaves, small flowers, small...

  • Crataegus sanguinea
    Crataegus sanguinea
    Crataegus sanguinea is a species of hawthorn that is native to southern Siberia, Mongolia, and the extreme north of China. It is cultivated for its edible red berry-like fruit which actually is a pome. The fruit can be eaten raw or cooked. They can be used to make jam, jelly, and fruit preserves...

    - Redhaw Hawthorn
  • Crataegus sargentii
    Crataegus sargentii
    Crataegus sargentii is a species of hawthorn from the southeastern U.S., commonly called "Sargent's Hawthorn". It is a shrub to about 5 m in height with white flowers, and fruit up to about 1 cm in diameter that are yellow or yellow flushed with pink or red.-References and external links:*...

  • Crataegus scabrida
    Crataegus scabrida
    Crataegus scabrida is a species of hawthorn.- External links :*...

  • Crataegus scabrifolia
    Crataegus scabrifolia
    Crataegus scabrifolia is a hawthorn from China that grows at altitudes between 1520 and 2400 m in areas with high rainfall. It is usually a large shrub or small tree, and usually without thorns. The edible fruit are large for a hawthorn, up to 2.5 cm in diameter, red or yellow, and are sold in...

  • Crataegus songarica
    Crataegus songarica
    Crataegus songarica is an Asian species of hawthorn with black fruit that is sometimes used medicinally. It is closely related to Crataegus ambigua,, a species that has red fruit.- Distribution and ecology :...

  • Crataegus spathulata
    Crataegus spathulata
    Crataegus spathulata is a species hawthorn known by the common name littlehip hawthorn. It is native to the southeastern US. It has very attractive small delicate leaves with a bluish appearance, pretty flowers and small orange to red fruit....

    - Littlehip Hawthorn
  • Crataegus submollis
    Crataegus submollis
    Crataegus submollis is a species of hawthorn that grows to about 10 m in height and typically carries large crops of red fruit.This species is closely related to C. mollis, but the two species have separate native ranges. Amongst other differences between these two species, C. mollis has...

  • Crataegus succulenta
    Crataegus succulenta
    Crataegus succulenta is a species of hawthorn known by the common names fleshy hawthorn and succulent hawthorn. It is "the most wide-ranging hawthorn in North America", native to much of southern Canada, and the United States as far south as Arizona, New Mexico, Kansas, Missouri, North Carolina,...

    - Fleshy Hawthorn
  • Crataegus tanacetifolia
    Crataegus tanacetifolia
    Crataegus tanacetifolia is a species of hawthorn. It is native to Turkey where it occurs on dry slopes or in rocky places, usually on calcareous rocks....

  • Crataegus tracyi
    Crataegus tracyi
    Crataegus tracyi is a species of hawthorn from Texas and Mexico. It is a shrub to about 6 m in height with white flowers, round red somewhat hairy fruit, and often with red autumn leaves. It is quite variable in appearance. It is rarely cultivated but has the potential to become a valuable...

  • Crataegus triflora
    Crataegus triflora
    Crataegus triflora is an uncommon hawthorn species of the south-eastern U.S., of known by the common name three-flowered hawthorn.It is a multi-stemmed shrub 3 to 5 meters tall. The flowers are quite large for hawthorn flowers, and occur in small clusters...

  • Crataegus uniflora
    Crataegus uniflora
    Crataegus uniflora is a species of hawthorn known by the common name one-flowered hawthorn, or dwarf hawthorn. It is native to parts of the southeastern US. The plant is usually a small bush, but some forms can be a few meters tall. The flowers occur singly or in small clusters. The fruit are hairy...

  • Crataegus viridis
    Crataegus viridis
    Crataegus viridis is a species of hawthorn that is native to the southeastern US. Forms vary considerably, and many desirable ornamental forms could be selected from the wild. The cultivar 'Winter King' is a well-known selection....

    - Green Hawthorn, including cultivar 'Winter King'
  • Crataegus visenda
    Crataegus visenda
    Crataegus visenda is one or more species of hawthorn from the southeastern U.S., primarily from Florida, that is sometimes considered as four separate species, including C. arrogans, C. sodalis, and C. tristis. It is a large shrub or small tree to 10 m tall.-References and external links:* *...

  • Crataegus vulsa
    Crataegus vulsa
    Crataegus vulsa, the "Alabama hawthorn" is a rare species of hawthorn from northeastern Alabama and northwestern Georgia.-References and external links:*...

  • Crataegus wattiana
    Crataegus wattiana
    Crataegus wattiana is an Asian species of hawthorn. The original description states that it has yellow fruit with five stones .-References and external links:*...

  • Crataegus wilsonii
    Crataegus wilsonii
    Crataegus wilsonii is a species of hawthorn native to the mountains of southwestern China at elevations of 900 to 3000 meters. It is an ornamental tree, intolerant of summer drought, that is rarely cultivated....


The name Crataegus apiifolia
Crataegus apiifolia
Crataegus apiifolia is a name sometimes used for some species of hawthorns. In 1793 Medikus published the name C. apiifolia for a European hawthorn , but the name is illegitimate under the International Code of Botanical Nomenclature. In 1803 Michaux published the same name for an American species,...

has been applied to two different species, but both are illegitimate names
Nomen illegitimum
A nomen illegitimum is a technical term, used mainly in botany. It is usually abbreviated as nom. illeg..-Definition:...

.
Crataegus oxyacantha
Crataegus oxyacantha
The name Crataegus oxyacantha L. has been rejected as being of uncertain application, but is sometimes still used.-Taxonomy:Linnaeus introduced the name Crataegus oxyacantha for a species of Northern European Hawthorn and the name gradually became used for several similar species which were assumed...

is a rejected name, currently thought to be a heterotypic synonym of Crataegus rhipidophylla
Crataegus rhipidophylla
Crataegus rhipidophylla is a species of hawthorn which occurs naturally from southern Scandinavia and the Baltic region to France, the Balkan Peninsula, Turkey, Caucasia, and Ukraine. It is poorly known as a landscape and garden plant, but seems to have potential for those uses. Two varieties are...


See also


Selected hybrids

  • Crataegus × ariifolia
    Crataegus × ariifolia
    Crataegus × ariifolia is an ornamental hybrid hawthorn that is used in horticulture. Its name refers to a similarity of its leaves to the genus Aria .-Taxonomy:...

     (= C. ariaefolia)
  • Crataegus arnoldiana
    Crataegus arnoldiana
    Crataegus arnoldiana is a hawthorn. It is one of the hybrid forms known as C. ×anomala, the name used for all hybrids between C. intricata and C. mollis.-References and external links:* ...

  • Crataegus × dsungarica
    Crataegus dsungarica
    Crataegus × dsungarica is a hawthorn that is a hybrid between C. songarica in C. sect. Crataegus and C. wattiana in C. sect. Sanguineae. It has blackish purple fruit....

  • Crataegus × grignonensis
    Crataegus × grignonensis
    Crataegus × grignonensis is a hybrid hawthorn commonly known as "Grignon Hawthorn". The hybrid originated as a seedling of Crataegus mexicana...

     Grignon hawthorn, an unpublished name
  • Crataegus × lavallei
    Crataegus × lavallei
    Crataegus × lavallei, sometimes simply known as Crataegus lavallei or Lavallée's hawthorn, is a hybrid that arose between cultivated specimens of two species in the genus Crataegus ....

     Lavallée hawthorn, including Crataegus × carrieri
  • Crataegus × macrocarpa
    Crataegus × macrocarpa
    Crataegus × macrocarpa, is a hybrid between two species of hawthorn , C. monogyna and C. rhipidophylla, both in series Crataegus. It is sometimes confounded with C. × media, the hybrid between C. monogyna and C...

  • Crataegus × media
    Crataegus × media
    Crataegus × media, is a hybrid between two species in the genus Crataegus , C. monogyna and C. laevigata, both in series Crataegus...

     the name for C. monogynaC. laevigata hybrids
  • Crataegus × mordenensis
    Crataegus × mordenensis
    Crataegus × mordenensis, Morden Hawthorn, is a hybrid that arose between two species in the genus Crataegus , Crataegus laevigata and Crataegus succulenta...

     Morden hawthorn, including 'Toba' and 'Snowbird'
  • Crataegus × sinaica
    Crataegus × sinaica
    Crataegus × sinaica is a hawthorn that originated as a hybrid between two other hawthorn species, C. azarolus in series Orientales and C. monogyna in series Crataegus. It grows in the central and eastern parts of the Mediterranean region on rocky mountain slopes...

     - Za'rur
  • Crataegus × smithiana
    Crataegus × smithiana
    Crataegus × smithiana, or perhaps more correctly Crataegus 'smithiana', is a hybrid hawthorn commonly known as Red Mexican Hawthorn. The hybrid is said to have originated at the Yarralumla Nursery in Canberra, Australia...

     Red Mexican hawthorn, an unpublished name
  • Crataegus × vailiae
    Crataegus × vailiae
    Crataegus × vailiae is a hawthorn hybrid that primarily occurs in Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina and Georgia. It appears to be a hybrid between C. uniflora and a member of series Macracanthae, probably C. calpodendron....


Propagation

Although it is commonly stated that hawthorns can be propagated by cutting, this is difficult to achieve with rootless stem pieces. Small plants or suckers are often transplanted from the wild. Seeds require stratification
Stratification (botany)
In horticulture, stratification is the process of pretreating seeds to simulate natural winter conditions that a seed must endure before germination. Many seed species undergo an embryonic dormancy phase, and generally will not sprout until this dormancy is broken...

 and take one or two years to germinate. Seed germination is improved if the pyrenes
Pyrena
Pyrena or pyrene is the name for a nutlet resembling a seed, or the kernel of a drupe or drupelet....

 that contain the seed are subjected to extensive drying at room temperature, before stratification. Uncommon forms can be grafted
Grafting
Grafting is a horticultural technique whereby tissues from one plant are inserted into those of another so that the two sets of vascular tissues may join together. This vascular joining is called inosculation...

 onto seedlings of other species.

Culinary use

The fruits of the species Crataegus pinnatifida
Crataegus pinnatifida
Crataegus pinnatifida, also known as Chinese hawthorn or shānzhā , refers to a small to a medium-sized tree as well as the fruit of the tree. The fruit is bright red, 1.5 inches in diameter.-Culinary use:...

(Chinese Hawthorn) are tart, bright red, and resemble small crabapple
Malus
Malus , the apples, are a genus of about 30–35 species of small deciduous trees or shrubs in the family Rosaceae. Other studies go as far as 55 species including the domesticated Orchard Apple, or Table apple as it was formerly called...

 fruits. They are used to make many kinds of Chinese snacks, including haw flakes
Haw flakes
Haw flakes are Chinese sweets made from the fruit of the Chinese hawthorn. The dark pink candy is usually formed into discs one millimeter thick. Some Chinese people take the flakes with bitter Chinese herbal medicine.-History:...

 and tanghulu (糖葫芦). The fruits, which are called shānzhā (山楂) in Chinese, are also used to produce jams, jellies, juices, alcoholic beverages, and other drinks http://www.itmonline.org/arts/crataegus.htm. In South Korea
South Korea
The Republic of Korea , , is a sovereign state in East Asia, located on the southern portion of the Korean Peninsula. It is neighbored by the People's Republic of China to the west, Japan to the east, North Korea to the north, and the East China Sea and Republic of China to the south...

, a liquor called sansachun (산사춘) is made from the fruits.http://www.soolsool.co.kr/English/product.htm

The fruits of Crataegus mexicana
Crataegus mexicana
Crataegus mexicana is a species of hawthorn known by the common names tejocote, manzanita, tejocotera and Mexican hawthorn. It is native to the mountains of Mexico and parts of Guatemala, and has been introduced elsewhere in the Andes. The fruit of this species is one of the most useful among...

are known in Mexico
Mexico
The United Mexican States , commonly known as Mexico , is a federal constitutional republic in North America. It is bordered on the north by the United States; on the south and west by the Pacific Ocean; on the southeast by Guatemala, Belize, and the Caribbean Sea; and on the east by the Gulf of...

 as tejocotes and are eaten raw, cooked, or in jam during the winter months. They are stuffed in the piñata
Piñata
A piñata is a papier-mâché or other type of container that is decorated, filled with toys and or candy and then broken as part of a ceremony or celebration. Piñatas are most commonly associated with Mexico, but its origins are considered to be in China...

s
broken during the traditional pre-Christmas celebration known as Las Posadas. They are also cooked with other fruits to prepare a Christmas punch. The mixture of tejocote paste, sugar, and chili powder produces a popular Mexican candy called rielitos, which is manufactured by several brands.

In the southern United States fruits of three native species are collectively known as mayhaw
Mayhaw
Mayhaw is the name given to the fruit of the species of Crataegus series Aestivales that are common in wetlands throughout the southern United States. The principal species are C. aestivalis, the eastern Mayhaw, and C...

s and are made into jellies which are considered a great delicacy. On Manitoulin Island
Manitoulin Island
Manitoulin Island is a Canadian island in Lake Huron, in the province of Ontario. It is the largest island in a freshwater lake in the world. In addition to the historic Anishinaabe and European settlement of the island, archeological discoveries at Sheguiandah have demonstrated Paleo-Indian and...

 in Canada
Canada
Canada is a North American country consisting of ten provinces and three territories. Located in the northern part of the continent, it extends from the Atlantic Ocean in the east to the Pacific Ocean in the west, and northward into the Arctic Ocean...

, some red-fruited species are called hawberries. They are common there thanks to the island's distinctive alkaline soil. During the pioneer days, white settlers ate these fruits during the winter as the only remaining food supply. People born on the island are now called "haweater
Haweater
Haweater is a nickname given to a person born on Manitoulin Island, Ontario. The name derives from the prevalence of hawberries among the island's vegetation...

s".

In Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

, the fruits of Crataegus azarolus
Crataegus azarolus
Crataegus azarolus is a species of hawthorn known by the common names azarole, mosphilla, and Mediterranean medlar. It is native to the Mediterranean Basin and it is grown there and elsewhere as an ornamental tree and for its fruit. It has been used historically for a number of medicinal purposes.C...

(var. aronia) are known as zalzalak and are eaten raw as a snack, or used as in a jam known by the same name.

The leaves are edible and, if picked in spring when still young, they are tender enough to be used in salads.

Medicinal use

Several species of hawthorn have been used in traditional medicine
Traditional medicine
Traditional medicine comprises unscientific knowledge systems that developed over generations within various societies before the era of modern medicine...

, and there is considerable interest in testing hawthorn products for evidence-based medicine
Evidence-based medicine
Evidence-based medicine or evidence-based practice aims to apply the best available evidence gained from the scientific method to clinical decision making. It seeks to assess the strength of evidence of the risks and benefits of treatments and diagnostic tests...

. The products being tested are often derived from C. monogyna, C laevigata, or related Crataegus species, "collectively known as hawthorn", not necessarily distinguishing between these species, which are very similar in appearance. A meta-analysis
Meta-analysis
In statistics, a meta-analysis combines the results of several studies that address a set of related research hypotheses. In its simplest form, this is normally by identification of a common measure of effect size, for which a weighted average might be the output of a meta-analyses. Here the...

 of previous studies concluded that there is evidence of benefit for an extract
Extract
An extract is a substance made by extracting a part of a raw material, often by using a solvent such as ethanol or water. Extracts may be sold as tinctures or in powder form....

 in treating chronic heart failure. A 2010 review cites the need for further study of the best dosages and concludes that although "many different theoretical interactions between Crataegus and orthodox medications have been postulated ... none have [yet] been substantiated.

The dried fruit
Dried fruit
Dried fruit is fruit where the majority of the original water content has been removed either naturally, through sun drying, or through the use of specialized dryers or dehydrators. Dried fruit has a long tradition of use dating back to the fourth millennium BC in Mesopotamia, and is prized...

s of Crataegus pinnatifida (called shān zhā in Chinese) are used in naturopathic medicine
Naturopathic medicine
Naturopathy, or Naturopathic Medicine, is a form of alternative medicine based on a belief in vitalism, which posits that a special energy called vital energy or vital force guides bodily processes such as metabolism, reproduction, growth, and adaptation...

 and traditional Chinese medicine
Traditional Chinese medicine
Traditional Chinese Medicine refers to a broad range of medicine practices sharing common theoretical concepts which have been developed in China and are based on a tradition of more than 2,000 years, including various forms of herbal medicine, acupuncture, massage , exercise , and dietary therapy...

, primarily as a digestive aid. A closely related species, Crataegus cuneata (Japanese Hawthorn, called sanzashi in Japanese) is used in a similar manner. Other species (especially Crataegus laevigata) are used in herbal medicine where the plant is believed to strengthen cardiovascular function.

Another use of this herb is as a mild sedative
Sedative
A sedative or tranquilizer is a substance that induces sedation by reducing irritability or excitement....

 in promotion of sleep. Hawthorn should not be used during pregnancy.

Active ingredients found in hawthorn include tannin
Tannin
A tannin is an astringent, bitter plant polyphenolic compound that binds to and precipitates proteins and various other organic compounds including amino acids and alkaloids.The term tannin refers to the use of...

s, flavonoid
Flavonoid
Flavonoids , are a class of plant secondary metabolites....

s (such as vitexin
Vitexin
Vitexin is an apigenin flavone glucoside, a chemical coupound found in the passion flower, Vitex agnus-castus and in the Phyllostachys nigra bamboo leaves...

, rutin
Rutin
Rutin, also called rutoside, quercetin-3-O-rutinoside and sophorin, is a citrus flavonoid glycoside found in buckwheat, the leaves and petioles of Rheum species, and asparagus...

, quercetin
Quercetin
Quercetin , a flavonol, is a plant-derived flavonoid found in fruits, vegetables, leaves and grains. It also may be used as an ingredient in supplements, beverages or foods.-Occurrence:...

, and hyperoside
Hyperoside
Hyperoside is a chemical compound. It is the 3-O-galactoside of quercetin. It is a medicinally active compound that can be isolated from Drosera rotundifolia, from the Stachys plant, from Prunella vulgaris, from Rumex acetosella, Cuscuta Chinensis seeds and from St John's wort.In Rheum nobile and R...

), oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs, such as epicatechin, procyanidin
Procyanidin
Procyanidins are members of the proanthocyanidin class of flavonoids. They are oligomeric compounds, formed from catechin and epicatechin molecules....

, and particularly procyanidin B-2), flavone-C, triterpene acids (such ursolic acid
Ursolic acid
Ursolic acid is a pentacyclic triterpene acid, used in cosmetics, that is also capable of inhibiting various types of cancer cells by inhibiting the STAT3 activation pathway and human fibrosarcoma cells by reducing the expression of matrix metalloproteinase-9 by acting through the glucocorticoid...

, oleanolic acid
Oleanolic acid
Oleanolic acid or oleanic acid is a naturally occurring triterpenoid, widely distributed in food and medicinal plants, related to betulinic acid. It can be found in Phytolacca americana , and Syzygium spp, garlic, etc...

, and crataegolic acid), and phenolic acid
Phenolic acid
Phenolic acids are a type of organic compounds. Included in that class are substances containing a phenolic ring and an organic carboxylic acid function ....

s (such as caffeic acid
Caffeic acid
Caffeic acid is a hydroxycinnamic acid, a naturally occurring organic compound. This yellow solid consists of both phenolic and acrylic functional groups...

, chlorogenic acid
Chlorogenic acid
Chlorogenic acid is a hydroxycinnamic acid, a member of a family of naturally occurring organic compounds. These are esters of polyphenolic caffeic acid and cyclitol -quinic acid. It is an important biosynthetic intermediate. It also is one of the phenols found in coffee, bamboo Phyllostachys...

, and related phenolcarboxylic acids).
Standardization of hawthorn products is based on content of flavonoid
Flavonoid
Flavonoids , are a class of plant secondary metabolites....

s (2.2%) and OPCs (18.75%).

Human studies

Several pilot studies have assessed the ability of hawthorn to help improve exercise tolerance in people with NYHA class II cardiac insufficiency compared to placebo. One experiment, at (300 mg/day) for 4 to 8 weeks, found no difference from placebo. The second study, including 78 subjects (600 mg/day) for 8 weeks, found "significant improvement in exercise tolerance" and lower blood pressure and heart rate during exercise. The third, including 32 subjects (900 mg/day) for 8 weeks, found improved exercise tolerance as well as a reduction in the "incidence and severity of symptoms such as dyspnea
Dyspnea
Dyspnea , shortness of breath , or air hunger, is the subjective symptom of breathlessness.It is a normal symptom of heavy exertion but becomes pathological if it occurs in unexpected situations...

" and fatigue decreased by approximately 50%.

In the HERB-CHF (Hawthorn Extract Randomized Blinded Chronic HF Study) clinical study, 120 patients took 450 mg of hawthorn extract twice daily for 6 months in combination with standard therapy and a standardized exercise program. "No effects of hawthorn were seen on either quality-of-life endpoint (Tables 1 and 2), or when adjusted for LVEF".

One research program, consisting of 1,011 patients taking one tablet (standardized to 84.3 mg procyanidin
Proanthocyanidin
Proanthocyanidins, also known as OPCs or condensed tannins, are a subgroup of the flavonoid class of polyphenols...

) twice daily for 24 weeks, found "improvements in clinical symptoms (such as fatigue, palpitations, and exercise dyspnea), performance and exercise tolerance test, and ejection fraction
Ejection fraction
In cardiovascular physiology, ejection fraction is the fraction of Blood pumped out of the Right Ventricle of the heart to the Pulmonary Circulation and Left Ventricle of the heart to the Systemic Circulation with each Heart beat or Cardiac cycle...

".

Side effects

Overdose can cause cardiac arrhythmia and dangerously lower blood pressure. Milder side effects include nausea and sedation.

Other uses

The wood of some hawthorn species is very hard and resistant to rot. In rural North America it was prized for use as tool handles and fence posts.

Grafting
Hawthorn can also be used as a rootstock
Rootstock
A rootstock is a plant, and sometimes just the stump, which already has an established, healthy root system, used for grafting a cutting or budding from another plant. The tree part being grafted onto the rootstock is usually called the scion...

 in the practice of grafting
Grafting
Grafting is a horticultural technique whereby tissues from one plant are inserted into those of another so that the two sets of vascular tissues may join together. This vascular joining is called inosculation...

. It is graft-compatible with Mespilus (medlar), and with pear
Pear
The pear is any of several tree species of genus Pyrus and also the name of the pomaceous fruit of these trees. Several species of pear are valued by humans for their edible fruit, but the fruit of other species is small, hard, and astringent....

, and makes a hardier rootstock than quince
Quince
The quince , or Cydonia oblonga, is the sole member of the genus Cydonia and native to warm-temperate southwest Asia in the Caucasus region...

, but the thorny suckering habit of the hawthorn can be problematic.

Seedling
Seedling
thumb|Monocot and dicot seedlingsA seedling is a young plant sporophyte developing out of a plant embryo from a seed. Seedling development starts with germination of the seed. A typical young seedling consists of three main parts: the radicle , the hypocotyl , and the cotyledons...

s of Crataegus monogyna, have been used to graft multiple species on the same trunk, such as Pink hawthorn
Crataegus × media
Crataegus × media, is a hybrid between two species in the genus Crataegus , C. monogyna and C. laevigata, both in series Crataegus...

, pear tree
Pear Tree
Pear Tree is an inner city suburb of Derby, England. It is situated next to the areas of Normanton, Rose Hill and Osmaston. Pear Tree could be described as a suburb within a suburb because the people of Derby would identify it as an area in its own right, but it could also be described as forming...

 and medlar, the result being trees which give pink and white flowers in May and fruits during the summer. "Chip budding
Budding
Budding is a form of asexual reproduction in which a new organism grows on another one. The new organism remains attached as it grows, separating from the parent organism only when it is mature. Since the reproduction is asexual, the newly created organism is a clone and is genetically identical...

" has also been performed on hawthorn trunks in order to have several branches of several varieties on the same tree. Such trees can be seen in Vigo
Vigo
Vigo is a city and municipality in north-west Spain, in Galicia, situated on the ria of the same name on the Atlantic Ocean.-Population:...

, Spain
Spain
Spain , officially the Kingdom of Spain languages]] under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. In each of these, Spain's official name is as follows:;;;;;;), is a country and member state of the European Union located in southwestern Europe on the Iberian Peninsula...

 and in the north west of France
France
The French Republic , The French Republic , The French Republic , (commonly known as France , is a unitary semi-presidential republic in Western Europe with several overseas territories and islands located on other continents and in the Indian, Pacific, and Atlantic oceans. Metropolitan France...

 (mainly in Brittany
Brittany
Brittany is a cultural and administrative region in the north-west of France. Previously a kingdom and then a duchy, Brittany was united to the Kingdom of France in 1532 as a province. Brittany has also been referred to as Less, Lesser or Little Britain...

).

Folklore

The custom of employing the flowering branches for decorative purposes on the 1st of May is of very early origin; but since the adoption of the Gregorian calendar
Gregorian calendar
The Gregorian calendar, also known as the Western calendar, or Christian calendar, is the internationally accepted civil calendar. It was introduced by Pope Gregory XIII, after whom the calendar was named, by a decree signed on 24 February 1582, a papal bull known by its opening words Inter...

 in 1752, the tree has rarely been in full bloom in England before the second week of that month. In the Scottish Highlands the flowers may be seen as late as the middle of June. The saying "Ne'er cast a cloot til Mey's oot" conveys a warning not to shed any cloots
Clootie
A clootie or cloot in Scots is a strip or piece of cloth, a rag or item of clothing; it can also refer to fabric used in the patching of clothes or the making of proddy rugs . The saying "Ne'er cast a cloot til Mey's oot" conveys a warning not to shed any clothes before the summer has fully...

 (clothes) before the summer has fully arrived and the may flowers (hawthorn blossoms) are in full bloom.

The hawthorn has been regarded as the emblem of hope, and its branches are stated to have been carried by the ancient Greeks in wedding processions, and to have been used by them to deck the altar of Hymenaios
Hymenaios
In Greek mythology, Hymen was a god of marriage ceremonies, inspiring feasts and song. Related to the god's name, a hymenaios is a genre of Greek lyric poetry sung during the procession of the bride to the groom's house in which the god is addressed, in contrast to the Epithalamium, which was sung...

. The supposition that the tree was the source of Jesus
Jesus
Jesus of Nazareth , commonly referred to as Jesus Christ or simply as Jesus or Christ, is the central figure of Christianity...

's crown of thorns gave rise doubtless to the tradition current among the French peasantry that it utters groans and cries on Good Friday
Good Friday
Good Friday , is a religious holiday observed primarily by Christians commemorating the crucifixion of Jesus Christ and his death at Calvary. The holiday is observed during Holy Week as part of the Paschal Triduum on the Friday preceding Easter Sunday, and may coincide with the Jewish observance of...

, and probably also to the old popular superstition in Great Britain and Ireland that ill-luck attended the uprooting of hawthorns. Branches of Glastonbury Thorn
Glastonbury Thorn
The Glastonbury Thorn is a form of Common Hawthorn, Crataegus monogyna 'Biflora' , found in and around Glastonbury, Somerset, England. Unlike ordinary hawthorn trees, it flowers twice a year , the first time in winter and the second time in spring...

, (C. monogyna 'Biflora', sometimes called C. oxyacantha var. praecox), which flowers both in December and in spring, were formerly highly valued in England, on account of the legend that the tree was originally the staff of Joseph of Arimathea
Joseph of Arimathea
Joseph of Arimathea was, according to the Gospels, the man who donated his own prepared tomb for the burial of Jesus after Jesus' Crucifixion. He is mentioned in all four Gospels.-Gospel references:...

.

In Celtic lore, the hawthorn plant was used commonly for rune inscriptions along with Yew
Taxus baccata
Taxus baccata is a conifer native to western, central and southern Europe, northwest Africa, northern Iran and southwest Asia. It is the tree originally known as yew, though with other related trees becoming known, it may be now known as the English yew, or European yew.-Description:It is a small-...

 and Apple
Apple
The apple is the pomaceous fruit of the apple tree, species Malus domestica in the rose family . It is one of the most widely cultivated tree fruits, and the most widely known of the many members of genus Malus that are used by humans. Apple grow on small, deciduous trees that blossom in the spring...

. It was once said to heal the broken heart. In Ireland, the red fruit is, or was in living memory, called the Johnny MacGorey or Magory.

Serbian
Serbs
The Serbs are a South Slavic ethnic group of the Balkans and southern Central Europe. Serbs are located mainly in Serbia, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina, and form a sizable minority in Croatia, the Republic of Macedonia and Slovenia. Likewise, Serbs are an officially recognized minority in...

 and Croatian
Croats
Croats are a South Slavic ethnic group mostly living in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and nearby countries. There are around 4 million Croats living inside Croatia and up to 4.5 million throughout the rest of the world. Responding to political, social and economic pressure, many Croats have...

 folklore notes hawthorn (Serbian
Serbian language
Serbian is a form of Serbo-Croatian, a South Slavic language, spoken by Serbs in Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Croatia and neighbouring countries....

 глог / glog, Croatian
Croatian language
Croatian is the collective name for the standard language and dialects spoken by Croats, principally in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Serbian province of Vojvodina and other neighbouring countries...

 glog) is particularly deadly to vampire
Vampire
Vampires are mythological or folkloric beings who subsist by feeding on the life essence of living creatures, regardless of whether they are undead or a living person...

s, and stakes used for their slaying must be made from the wood of the thorn tree.

In Gaelic
Gaels
The Gaels or Goidels are speakers of one of the Goidelic Celtic languages: Irish, Scottish Gaelic, and Manx. Goidelic speech originated in Ireland and subsequently spread to western and northern Scotland and the Isle of Man....

 folklore, hawthorn (in Scottish Gaelic, Sgitheach and in Irish
Irish language
Irish , also known as Irish Gaelic, is a Goidelic language of the Indo-European language family, originating in Ireland and historically spoken by the Irish people. Irish is now spoken as a first language by a minority of Irish people, as well as being a second language of a larger proportion of...

, sceach) 'marks the entrance to the otherworld
Other World
The Otherworld is a concept in Celtic mythology, referring to a realm of the dead, the home of the deities or spirits....

' and is strongly associated with the fairies
Fairy
A fairy is a type of mythical being or legendary creature, a form of spirit, often described as metaphysical, supernatural or preternatural.Fairies resemble various beings of other mythologies, though even folklore that uses the term...

. Lore has it that it is very unlucky to cut the tree at any time other than when it is in bloom, however during this time it is commonly cut and decorated as a May Bush (see Beltane
Beltane
Beltane or Beltaine is the anglicised spelling of Old Irish  Beltaine or Beltine , the Gaelic name for either the month of May or the festival that takes place on the first day of May.Bealtaine was historically a Gaelic festival celebrated in Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man.Bealtaine...

). This warning persists to modern times; it has been questioned by folklorist Bob Curran whether the ill luck of the De Lorean Motor Company
De Lorean Motor Company
The original DeLorean Motor Company was a short-lived automobile manufacturer formed by automobile industry executive John DeLorean in 1975. It is remembered for the one model it produced — the distinctive stainless steel DeLorean DMC-12 sports car featuring gull-wing doors — and for its brief and...

 was associated with the destruction of a fairy thorn to make way for a production facility.

Hawthorn trees are often found beside clootie well
Clootie well
Clootie wells are places of pilgrimage in Celtic areas. They are wells or springs, almost always with a tree growing beside them, where strips of cloth or rags have been left, usually tied to the branches of the tree as part of a healing ritual...

s; at these types of holy wells they are sometimes known as 'rag trees', for the strips of cloth which are tied to them as part of healing rituals.
'When all fruit fails, welcome haws' was once a common expression in Ireland.

External links

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