Paul's Scarlet Hawthorn Crataegus × media

☠ Toxic to humans
🐾 Toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
Crataegus flexilis


The plant commonly known as Hawthorn is a broadleaf decidarious shrub with a compact and rounded shape. Its branches grow dense and may bear thorns. The leaves are typically glossy, deep green, and have a lobed shape, resembling that of a small oak leaf. In the spring, the plant becomes highly ornamental with an abundance of white flowers that have a distinctive, sweet scent, attracting pollinators such as bees and butterflies. Following the flowering period, it produces small red fruits known as haws, which can be a food source for wildlife. The fruits may persist into winter, providing interest in the otherwise barren landscape. The bark of the Hawthorn is generally rough and gray, adding texture to its appearance.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Synonyms

      English Hawthorn, Midland Hawthorn

    • Common names

      Crataegus × media.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      The plant in question is commonly known as Hawthorn. The Hawthorn is not considered toxic to humans. In fact, parts of the plant such as the berries, leaves, and flowers have been used in traditional medicine. However, excessive consumption is not recommended, as it could lead to stomach upset, headache, and other side effects due to the active biological compounds present. Always consult with a healthcare provider before consuming plant-based supplements or large quantities of plant material.

    • To pets

      Hawthorn is not generally considered toxic to pets either. While the berries, leaves, and flowers are used in traditional human medicine, pets may experience gastrointestinal upset if they consume parts of this plant in significant quantities. It is always best to prevent pets from ingesting plant material to avoid any potential digestive issues or unforeseen reactions, since individual sensitivity can vary among animals. If you suspect your pet has consumed a large amount of Hawthorn and is showing adverse symptoms, it is advisable to consult your veterinarian.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      15-25 feet (4.6-7.6 meters)

    • Spread

      15-25 feet (4.6-7.6 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area



  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Aesthetic Appeal: Adds ornamental value to landscapes with its attractive flowers, fruits, and foliage.
    • Wildlife Support: Provides food and habitat for birds and other wildlife species.
    • Tolerance to Conditions: Adapts well to a variety of soil types and urban pollution.
    • Shade and Shelter: Offers shade and shelter in gardens and urban areas.
    • Privacy and Noise Reduction: Can be used as a hedge or screen for privacy and noise abatement.
    • Erosion Control: Helps in stabilizing soil and preventing erosion with its robust root system.
    • Seasonal Interest: Offers year-round visual interest, especially with its spring blossoms and autumn berries.
    • Low Maintenance: Generally requires minimal upkeep once established in an appropriate site.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    • Cardiovascular support: Crataegus × media, commonly known as the English hawthorn, has been traditionally used to support cardiovascular health, including heart function, blood circulation, and blood pressure regulation.
    • Antioxidant potential: The plant may contain antioxidants that help in protecting the body against oxidative stress and reducing inflammation.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Woodworking: The dense wood of Crataegus × media, commonly known as the Midland Hawthorn, can be used for carving or making small wooden objects such as handles and tool parts.
    • Hedging: The thorny nature of Midland Hawthorn makes it suitable for creating defensive or livestock-proof hedgerows.
    • Wildlife Habitat: The dense foliage and thorny branches provide excellent shelter and nesting sites for birds and small mammals.
    • Ornamental Use: With its attractive flowers and often colorful berries, Midland Hawthorn is popular for decorative purposes in gardens and parks.
    • Fruit Leather: The berries of Midland Hawthorn can be dried and processed into a tangy fruit leather for a unique snack.
    • Natural Barriers: Planting Midland Hawthorn can be a natural method for guiding pedestrian flow in public spaces due to its thorny branches.
    • Erosion Control: The root system of Midland Hawthorn helps stabilize soil, making it beneficial for planting on slopes prone to erosion.
    • Dye Production: The leaves and berries of Midland Hawthorn can be used to produce natural dyes for textiles.
    • Insect Repellent: The strong scent of the leaves and flowers may act as a natural insect deterrent.
    • Bonsai: With proper training and pruning, Midland Hawthorn can be cultivated as a bonsai tree.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Paul's Scarlet hawthorn is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Paul's Scarlet hawthorn is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Hope: Crataegus × media, commonly known as the Paul's Scarlet Hawthorn, often symbolizes hope, as it blooms brightly with vitality and resilience.
    • Love and Protection: The thorns of the Paul's Scarlet Hawthorn are thought to represent both love's ability to pierce the heart and its protective qualities.
    • Happiness: The lush flowers of the Hawthorn are associated with happiness and contentment, inviting joy into one's life.
    • Renewal: The Hawthorn's cycle of blooming in spring represents renewal and the idea of starting afresh.
    • Defense: Historically, Hawthorns are planted as hedges, which symbolize boundaries and defense against negative forces.

Every 1-2 weeks
500 - 2500 Lux
Every 2-3 years
Spring-Early Summer
As needed
  • water dropWater

    The Paul's Scarlet Hawthorn should be watered deeply but infrequently to encourage strong root growth. During the first growing season, water once a week with about 2 gallons per session to establish the plant. After establishment, reduce watering to every two to three weeks, depending on weather conditions, with 1 to 2 gallons per watering. During drought or extremely hot conditions, increase watering frequency to prevent stress. Allow the soil to dry out between waterings to avoid root rot.

  • sunLight

    Paul's Scarlet Hawthorn thrives best in full sun conditions, needing at least six hours of direct sunlight daily. The ideal spot for this plant is in an open area away from taller structures or trees that could shade it, ensuring it gets uninterrupted sunlight throughout the day.

  • thermometerTemperature

    Paul's Scarlet Hawthorn is hardy and can withstand a range of temperatures; it can survive minimum winter temperatures down to -20° Fahrenheit, while hot summer temperatures of up to 100° Fahrenheit are generally well-tolerated. The ideal growing temperature for this hawthorn is between 60° and 80° Fahrenheit.

  • scissorsPruning

    Paul's Scarlet Hawthorn should be pruned to maintain shape, remove dead or diseased branches, and to promote air circulation within the canopy. The best time for pruning is in the late winter or early spring before new growth starts. This hawthorn may need occasional corrective pruning throughout the growing season to remove any water sprouts or suckers.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    Paul's Scarlet Hawthorn thrives in well-drained loamy soil with a pH range of 6.0 to 7.5. A good soil mix for this plant would be equal parts garden soil, compost, and gritty material such as perlite or coarse sand to improve drainage.

  • plantRepotting

    Paul's Scarlet Hawthorn, being a tree, is typically not repotted as it is usually planted directly in the ground. However, young trees can be repotted every 2-3 years or when rootbound in their early growth stages if they are being grown in containers.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Paul's Scarlet Hawthorn tolerates a wide range of humidity levels and does not have specific humidity requirements. It is adaptable to both dry and humid conditions as long as it is planted in an outdoor environment.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Not suitable for indoor growth; needs full sun.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in full sun, well-drained soil, and space adequately.

    • Hardiness zone

      5-8 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The life cycle of Crataegus × media, commonly known as the Paul's Scarlet hawthorn, begins with seed germination, which requires a period of cold stratification to break dormancy. The seedlings develop into juvenile plants with a set of true leaves, and in this stage, the plant establishes a root system and begins vegetative growth. As the hawthorn matures, it enters the adult stage and starts to produce flowers in late spring; these flowers are hermaphroditic and are pollinated by insects, leading to fruit development. The fruits, or haws, ripen in the autumn, turning reddish and containing seeds for potential dispersal. After several years, the hawthorn reaches full maturity and can continue to flower and fruit annually for many years, often living several decades. The plant will eventually enter a senescence phase, showing reduced growth and reproductive output until it dies.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Spring-Early Summer

    • The most popular method of propagating the Hawthorn (Crataegus × media) is through softwood cuttings. This entails taking a cutting from a new growth which is not yet firm, typically in late spring or early summer. The cutting, usually about 4 to 6 inches long (10 to 15 centimeters), should have at least two or three sets of leaves and be taken just below a leaf node. The lower leaves are removed, and the cut end is often dipped in rooting hormone to encourage root development. The cutting is then placed in a moist growing medium such as potting soil or perlite. To maintain humidity, a plastic bag or a propagator can cover the cutting, ensuring it does not dry out. It is kept in indirect light until roots have developed, after which it can be transplanted outdoors.