A Red Fruit Growing On A Thorny Flower Bush Common Hawthorn Tree History and Facts

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Common Hawthorn Tree History and Facts

Also known as common hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna), It is a deciduous tree and is native to Britain and most of Europe.

The tree is often found growing in scrub, hedgerows and forests. It is tolerant of most soils but grows best in full sun. Hawthorns often hybridize with other native species of hawthorn, such as the Midland HawthornCrataegus laevigata). They are very similar plants and difficult to tell apart.

What does hawthorn look like?

A mature tree will grow up to 15 meters tall and is characterized by its dense and spiny habit, although it can grow with a single stem as a small tree. The bark is rough, fissured, and gray to brown in color. The branches are slender and brown in color and mostly spiny.

The leaves are about 6 cm long and have tooth-shaped lobes. They turn a dull yellow color before falling in autumn.

Hawthorn plants are hermaphrodite; This means male and female reproductive organs are found in the same flower. The white or sometimes pink flowers are sweetly scented and have five petals that grow in clusters at the top. Insects pollinate them and they turn into red fruits called ‘haus’.

Fun fact: Hawthorn is known as the May-tree because of the flowering period of the trees. It is the only English tree named after the month in which it blooms.

Value for wildlife

Many different insects support this plant, estimated at over 300. Many caterpillars of many moth species feed on foliage, including garden ermine, light emerald, vapor, rhomboid torticollis, and small agar. The flowers are a source of pollen and nectar for bees and dormice also feed on them.

Mythology and Symbolism

In medieval times, it was believed that bringing hawthorn flowers into the house would bring sickness and death, it was also said to smell like the great plague.

How do we use hawthorn?

The wood is cream to brown in color and has a fine-grained texture that is very strong. It was used for engraving and turnery as well as for making veneers, boxes, cabinets and boat parts. The wood burns well and is often used for charcoal and firewood. Today it is a popular hedging plant and is used in a variety of settings such as wildlife parks.

threats

Hawthorn can be susceptible to aphid attack, gall mites and bacterial disease, fire blight.

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