Common Hawthorn

Common Hawthorn


Botanical name: Crataegusmonogyna

Common names: Common hawthorn, hawthorn (Burn’s times), May tree


  • Commonest hedging plant. Tree if not trimmed. Trees can reach 15m. Bark is brown grey, and the slender brown branches covered in thorns
  • Leaves: around 6cm long with comprised toothed lobes.
  • Flowers: clusters of small white (or pink) flowers with 5 petals. Hawthorns are hermaphrodites (both male and female organs within each flower
  • Young leaves and flowers are edible.
  • Fruits: once pollinated by insects, they develop into red berries known as haws. Berries contain antioxidants and are eaten by small mammals and migrating birds. Haws can be eaten raw but may cause mild stomach upset. Used to make jellies, wines and ketchup.

The thorny foliage makes good nesting shelter for birds. Very good for wildlife

Dying Properties

  • Colour: Flowers: Light yellow. Haws, leaves & branches: Pink.
    With Iron mordant: warm grey, soft maroon
  • Parts used/Foraging Season: Haws (berries), leaves and branches: Late summer


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