Hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna)
May, Whitethorn Irish Sceach geal (family - Rosaceae)
Deciduous tree dense leaved and thorny with short trunk. Commonly used for stock proof hedging. New shoots and leaves are reddish. Distinctive white blossom with strong scent and red berries (haws) later. Height 10 - 15m. Age long lived - 250 years
Found on all soil types. Protects seedlings of other broadleaved trees particularly oak from predation and hence aids natural regeneration. Natural distribution throughout British Isles and Europe to 500m.
Flowers Leaves Fruit Ripen Fall
May-June Mar-April Jul-Aug Oct-Nov Nov
White streaky or pale pinkish. Tough hard and heavy wood. Uses of wood - Walking sticks, tool handles, engraving and all turnery. Good firewood. Food and drink
Haws attractive to birds and spread in this way.
Growth & Propagation:
Seed is deeply dormant - treat as for Acer campestre. Approx 8000 germinable seeds per Kg. lso grown from cuttings. Grows rapidly for first 15 years or so. For hedges grow in seed beds for 2 years and then transplant into rows. Ready to plant into hedges at 4 years. Weeding improves growth significantly. Laying hedges to make them stockproof is an old country skill