Sketching Out Blog: Sketches of art, watercolor, photos, recipes, books, interviews, Jewish topics, and Highland Park, New Jersey

Red Berry Hawthorn Tree

red berry tree
A tree of red berries is around the corner from my home. I first noticed it for a Sky Watch post.

One of the members of our local Shade Tree Advisory Committee identified the tree for me as a hawthorn tree. She called me from the tree and said, “Leora, did you see the thorns on this tree?” I hadn’t, but in the above photo I circled in pale yellow where the thorns are, close to the tree and not obvious.

Another way she could tell it was a hawthorn was from the bark.

I had just learned about hawthorn berries from Mimi’s post. It seems that they are edible!

For more photos of my tree, go to my Flickr account. There’s another hawthorn berry tree in Highland Park on South Fourth Avenue.

Ilana-Davita says

I think that another element in tree-identification is the leaves.
Wonderful series.
Shabbat Shalom!

Leora says

Ilana-Davita, all the leaves are gone from the tree, so we couldn't use the leaves. I photographed what was under the tree, which is on Flickr, but I think those were all leaves from nearby trees, not from this one. I'll photograph the leaves in the spring. I'm going to follow this tree through its seasons.

Jientje says

How interesting, I've never heard of it before!

Lorri says

What lovely photos, and informative post! Hawthorn trees are found all throughout England. They were used as hedgerows in centuries past to keep enemies or peasants off of land.

The Jewish Side says

very cool, I like the 3rd to last one, where it looks like the berries are 3D, coming at you from the tree.

Leora says

Lorri, thanks for telling us more about hawthorns.
Jewish Side, yeah, I like that one, too!

Jannie says

I like the 3rd from the last one too. Such a pretty neighborhood too.

ramblingwoods says

Now I learned something today and I have much to learn about anything green...

Mimi says

Those berries and thorns sure look like hawthorns, but until the leaves and flowers come out, you can't know for sure. But assuming this is a hawthorn, those berries would not only be edible and medicinal, but tasty, too, like apples. We don't get berries that big here - I'd go wild making jam and wine from them.

Leora says

ramblingwoods, you know so much more about birds than I do.

Mimi, I'm going with what Karen Swaine told me, as she seems to know her trees. She said can't be sure about the kind of hawthorn, however; she emailed me that Washington Hawthorn and Winterking Hawthorn are popular varieties. I'm not too comfortable with eating them, even if I'm told they are edible. Maybe if yet another local nature person says, oh, yeah, go ahead.


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