Plant types and subtypes: Trees & Shrubs, Trees, Deciduous
Light Requirements: sun, part-sun
Water Use: low
Soil Moisture: dry, moist
Soil Description: acid, neutral, rich, average, poor, loam, clay, sand
Bloom Time: May, June
Bloom Color: white, pink
Leaf Color: green
Hardiness Zone: 5, 6, 7, 8
Additional Tags: attracts birds, attracts butterflies, drought tolerant, fall interest, fragrant flowers, salt-spray tolerant, showy fruit
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Crataegus crus-galliAlso known as:
Crataegus acutifolia, Crataegus algens, Crataegus barrettiana, Crataegus bushii, Crataegus canbyi, Crataegus cherokeensis, Crataegus cocksii, Crataegus danielsii, Crataegus denaria, Crataegus fecunda, Crataegus fontanesiana, Crataegus hannibalensis, Crataegus mohrii, Crataegus operta, Crataegus palliata, Crataegus palmeri, Crataegus permixta, Crataegus pyracanthoides, Crataegus regalis, Crataegus sabineana, Crataegus schizophylla, Crataegus signata, Crataegus subpilosa, Crataegus tantula, Crataegus tenax, Crataegus triumphalis, Crataegus uniqua, Crataegus vallicola
Crataegus crus-galli is a highly ornamental small deciduous tree, that can reach a height of 35' at maturity, and will be of equal spread. It can be multi-stemmed, though these will develop into stocky, sturdy trunks as the tree matures. It develops an umbrella like canopy with just a few feet of clearance from the ground. The flowers appear in dense clusters, are whitish or pinkish, fragrant but of considered malodorous. They give way to clusters of apple-like (pomes) small, 1/2" fruit that turn from green to red as they ripen. These will persist on the tree well into winter if not first eaten by wildlife. The leaves are deep-green, waxy, leathery and finely serrated, and turn brilliant shades of orange and red in fall. One its distinguishable features are the long, sharp needle-like thorns born on the stems.
Crataegus crus-galli is very easy to grow and adaptable to challenging conditions. It prefers rich, moist well-drained soil, but tolerates drought, poor and compacted soils, and is even resistant to salt spray. A location in full sun is best, but it will tolerate moderate amounts of shade or part-sun. Any pruning is best done in late winter to early spring. Trees will tend to produce suckers which should be promptly removed. It makes a good specimen for use in open areas, and its hardiness makes it a good choice for urban areas though the thorns are a liability and it should be kept away from areas with heavy foot traffic. Flowering occurs in May and June. Zones 5-8
It is easiest to propagate from freshly collected seeds. Seeds that have been dried and stored will require a series of stratification periods spread over the better part of a year. Is a good candidate for grafting. The genus name "Crataegus" means "flowering thorn".
Crataegus crus-galli provides valuable cover, and food for a variety of wildlife. Young plants quickly develop a taproot and are difficult to transplant. These should be placed in a permanent location as soon as possible.
Native Range & Classification
Recorded County Distribution: USDA data
AL, AR, CT, DC, DE, FL, GA, IA, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, NC, NJ, NY, OH, OK, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX, VA, VT, WI, WV
|Species||Crataegus crus-galli||cockspur hawthorn|