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Pasture Hawthorn Crataegus spathulata

Phonetic Spelling
krah-TEE-gus spath-yoo-LAY-tuh
Description

Crataegus, or Hawthorn, is a small deciduous tree or shrub that includes many species and varieties and is commonly found throughout North Carolina in the low swamps and river bottoms of the east to the high mountain ridges in the west. Crataegus spathulata, or Littlehip Hawthorn, is a native large shrub or small evergreen tree with slender branches, large thorns, white flowers that bloom in the spring, dark green toothed leaves, and bright red, edible fruits. It is found naturally in forests, and can extend up slopes to drier or rockier sites.Littlehip Hawthorn is a rare species, but is not endangered.

Littlehip Hawthorn's delicate leaves with a bluish tinge and red to orange fruit in the fall make it an attractive ornamental shrub.

Diseases, Insects, and Other Plant Problems:

No known diseases or pest problems.

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#hummingbirds#evergreen#small tree#heat tolerant#white flowers#wildlife plant#native tree#native shrub#showy fruits#NC native#red fruits#late spring flowers#evergreen shrub#larval host plant#evergreen tree#mid-spring flowers#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#Coastal FAC#Piedmont Mountains FAC#bird friendly#nectar plant late spring#mammals#food source soft mast fruit#butterfly friendly#nectar plant mid-spring#butterfly larvae#moth larvae#pollinators#pollinator garden#bee friendly#non-toxic for horses#non-toxic for dogs#non-toxic for cats#audubon#woodland garden#red-spotted purple butterfly#gray hairstreak butterfly#viceroy butterflies
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#hummingbirds#evergreen#small tree#heat tolerant#white flowers#wildlife plant#native tree#native shrub#showy fruits#NC native#red fruits#late spring flowers#evergreen shrub#larval host plant#evergreen tree#mid-spring flowers#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#Coastal FAC#Piedmont Mountains FAC#bird friendly#nectar plant late spring#mammals#food source soft mast fruit#butterfly friendly#nectar plant mid-spring#butterfly larvae#moth larvae#pollinators#pollinator garden#bee friendly#non-toxic for horses#non-toxic for dogs#non-toxic for cats#audubon#woodland garden#red-spotted purple butterfly#gray hairstreak butterfly#viceroy butterflies
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Crataegus
    Species:
    spathulata
    Family:
    Rosaceae
    Uses (Ethnobotany):
    Wood is strong, hard, and heavy, but with little commercial value.
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    South East and South Central United States
    Distribution:
    AL , AR , FL , GA , IL , KY , LA , MO , MS , NC , OK , SC , TN , TX , VA
    Wildlife Value:
    This plant provides nectar for pollinators. It is a larval host plant for Gray Hairstreak (Strymon melinus), Red-spotted Purple (Limenitis arthemis astyanax), and Viceroy (Limenitis archippus). Red-spotted Purple and Viceroy rarely use this host plant in North Carolina. Plant provides nesting protection.
    Edibility:
    Fruit is edible, but usually left for the birds.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 15 ft. 0 in. - 36 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 15 ft. 0 in. - 25 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Shrub
    Tree
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Dense
    Erect
    Multi-stemmed
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Appendage:
    Thorns
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Deep shade (Less than 2 hours to no direct sunlight)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Sand
    Soil Drainage:
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    7b, 7a, 8b, 8a, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Red/Burgundy
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Showy
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Type:
    Pome
    Fruit Description:
    Bright red fruits become available September and October.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Corymb
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Shape:
    Cup
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    White flowers with pale yellow anthers, in flat-topped clusters, with up to 20 small stamens that bloom from April to May. May have an initial unpleasant odor that attracts midges for pollination.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Smooth
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Obovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Crenate
    Serrate
    Hairs Present:
    No
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Description:
    Dark green, notched on the edges, typically 2 to 3 inches long. Leaves veined, not needle-like or scale-like.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Light Gray
    Surface/Attachment:
    Exfoliating
    Fissured
    Scaly
    Bark Description:
    This plant has attractive, exfoliating bark. Typically thin and gray that becomes scaly on older stems.
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Form:
    Zig Zags
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Design Feature:
    Flowering Tree
    Small Tree
    Attracts:
    Bees
    Butterflies
    Hummingbirds
    Moths
    Pollinators
    Small Mammals
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Drought
    Heat