Washington Thorn

Crataegus phaenopyrum

Crataegus phaenopyrum (Washington Thorn) - berries, leaf & fall foliage

Foliage detail

Crataegus phaenopyrum (Washington Thorn) - berries & leaf

Foliage detail

  • Size:

    Height: 25'; Spread: 20'

  • Growth:

    Moderate

  • Character:

    Deciduous; round form; light canopy.

  • Foliage:

    Dark green, serrated, lobbed leaves, 2-3" long. Fall foliage is yellow to orange to bright scarlet; tree is bare November - February.

  • Flower:

    White flowers, 1/2" across, hang in clusters 2-3" long, bloom March - May. 

  • Fruit:

    Bright red berries form in fall and drop in winter. 

  • Bark:

    Rough, brown bark with slender 1-3" long thorns on branches. 

  • Watering:

    In general, 15-20 gallons per week for the first 2 years; 15-20 gallons twice a month for the 3rd year; as needed after 3 years (varies by soil, sun, and wind conditions).

  • Tree Care:

    Moderate. Requires regular pruning to establish and maintain central leader and to train a good shape, and removal of suckers. Can require pest control. You may wish to cut off thorns from lower branches to prevent injuries.

  • Tolerance:

    Sandy soils. 

  • Special Considerations:

    Prefers sun and warmth. Needs good drainage. Does not tolerate strong winds, fog or salt air, but is more tolerant of wind than C. laevigatum, English hawthorn. 

  • Notable Traits:

    Native to southeastern US. Attractive changing display all year long, reflects seasonal changes. Good tree for 2x3' basins, beneath overhead wires. Attracts birds.