CRATAEGUS MONOGYNA, known as COMMON HAWTHORN or SINGLE-SEEDED
HAWTHORN, is a species of hawthorn native to
Other common names include MAY, MAYBLOSSOM, MAYTHORN, QUICKTHORN,
WHITETHORN, MOTHERDIE, and HAW. This species is one of several that
have been referred to as
* 1 Description
* 2 Uses
* 2.1 Medicinal use * 2.2 In gardening and agriculture * 2.3 Edible "berries", petals, and leaves
* 3 Notable trees * 4 See also * 5 Notes * 6 References * 7 Further reading * 8 External links
The common hawthorn is a shrub or small tree 5–14 metres (15 to 45 feet) tall, with a dense crown. The bark is dull brown with vertical orange cracks. The younger stems bear sharp thorns, approximately 12.5mm (half an inch) long. The leaves are 20 to 40mm (1 to 1½ inches) long, obovate and deeply lobed, sometimes almost to the midrib, with the lobes spreading at a wide angle. The upper surface is dark green above and paler underneath.
The hermaphrodite flowers are produced in late spring (May to early June in its native area) in corymbs of 5-25 together; each flower is about 10mm (half an inch) diameter, and has five white petals, numerous red stamens, and a single style; they are moderately fragrant. The flowers are pollinated by midges , bees and other insects and later in the year bear numerous haws. The haw is a small, oval dark red fruit about 10mm (half an inch) long, berry -like, but structurally a pome containing a single seed . Haws are important for wildlife in winter, particularly thrushes and waxwings ; these birds eat the haws and disperse the seeds in their droppings.
The common hawthorn is distinguished from the related but less widespread Midland hawthorn (C. laevigata) by its more upright growth, the leaves being deeply lobed, with spreading lobes, and in the flowers having just one style, not two or three. However they are inter-fertile and hybrids occur frequently; they are only entirely distinct in their more typical forms.
Common Hawthorn flowers *
Common Hawthorn thorns, leaves, and stipules *
Common Hawthorn fruit *
Bole of ancient hawthorn at Saint-Mars-sur-la-Futaie , France *
General view of the Saint-Mars tree *
Replacement of the Glastonbury or Holy Thorn cut down by vandals in 2010 *
IN GARDENING AND AGRICULTURE
Common hawthorn is extensively planted as a hedge plant, especially for agricultural use. Its spines and close branching habit render it effectively stock- and human-proof, with some basic maintenance. The traditional practice of hedge laying is most commonly practised with this species. It is a good fire wood which burns with a good heat and little smoke.
Numerous hybrids exist, some of which are used as garden shrubs. The
most widely used hybrid is C. × media (C. monogyna × C. laevigata),
of which several cultivars are known, including the very popular
'Paul's Scarlet' with dark pink double flowers. Other garden shrubs
that have sometimes been suggested as possible hybrids involving the
common hawthorn, include the various-leaved hawthorn of the
EDIBLE "BERRIES", PETALS, AND LEAVES
The fruit of hawthorn, called haws, are edible raw but are commonly made into jellies , jams , and syrups , used to make wine, or to add flavour to brandy. Botanically they are pomes , but they look similar to berries . A haw is small and oblong , similar in size and shape to a small olive or grape, and red when ripe . Haws develop in groups of 2-3 along smaller branches. They are pulpy and delicate in taste. In this species (C. monogyna) they have only one seed, but in other species of hawthorn there may be up to 5 seeds.
Petals are also edible, as are the leaves, which if picked in spring when still young are tender enough to be used in salads. Hawthorn petals are used in the medieval English recipe for spinee, an almond-milk based pottage recorded in ' The Forme of Cury ' by the Chief Master-Cook of King Richard II , c. 1390.
An ancient specimen, and reputedly the oldest tree of any species in
France, is to be found alongside the church at Saint Mars sur la
A famous specimen in England was the Glastonbury or Holy Thorn which,
according to legend, sprouted from the staff of Joseph of Arimathea
after he thrust it into the ground while visiting Glastonbury in the
1st century AD . The tree was noteworthy because it flowered twice in
a year, once in the late spring which is normal, but also once after
the harshness of midwinter had passed. The original tree at
Glastonbury Abbey, felled in the 1640s during the
English Civil War
The oldest known living specimen in
* Trees portal
* The hawthorn button-top gall on Hawthorn, is caused by the dipteron gall-midge Dasineura crataegi . * Haweater * List of Lepidoptera that feed on hawthorns * Folklore about hawthorns, primarily the European species C. laevigata and/or C. monogyna and hybrids between these two species.
* ^ Christensen, K.I. (1992). Revision of
* ^ Oztürk N, Tunçel M (2011). "Assessment of Phenolic Acid
Content and In Vitro Antiradical Characteristics of Hawthorn". J Med
* ^ "The burning properties of wood" (PDF). Scouts.
* ^ "
* Philips, R. (1979). Trees of North America and Europe, Random House, Inc., New York. ISBN 0-394-50259-0 .
* Bahorun, Theeshan, et al. (2003). "Phenolic constituents and
antioxidant capacities of