Common Hawthorn

Crataegus monogyna

Crataegus monogyna the Common Hawthorn is also known as quickthorn, thornapple, whitethorn, hawberry and May-tree, or simply ‘May’. It is native to the temperate northern hemisphere. Hawthorns are a very important hedgerow species for many animal species from birds and small mammals favouring the berries to a great many insects, especially the nectar feeding ones. The leaves are used by the larval stages of a large number of moth species such as the Small Eggar Eriogaster lanestris. Young leaves can be used in salad and wine or jam made from the fruit.

Hawthorn is among those shrubs and trees most widely recommended for water conservation landscapes.

Funky Fact File: The berries are commonly called haws and comes from the old english term for a hedge. And in Anglo-Saxon haguthorn meant a hedge with thorns. The young leaves and buds are edible and known in rural England as ‘bread & cheese’. Different members of the genus are widely used in traditional medicines.