Red hawthorn Crataegus Paul’s ScarletBritish Grown
CRATAEGUS PAULS SCARLET – Red Hawthorn
Double red flowers in May sing out from the branches of this robust little tree which is otherwise indistinguishable from the white hawthorn until this burst of cheerful colour, announcing the arrival of summer. Paul’s Scarlet grows to 6m (20ft) with a generally rounded shape. Although the lobed leaves are only small they are densely packed, forming a good screen during spring and summer. Even in winter the framework of stout, interweaving branches still offers useful cover. Birds often nest among the thorns and eat the red autumn berries.
Where to grow
Hawthorns extend the spring blossom season by flowering shortly after the cherries so would certainly add interest to larger planting schemes. Paul's Scarlet in particular provides an ornamental twist on an otherwise native tree with its eye-catching double red flowers and would therefore be good planted in or near a natural mixed hedge bordering the garden. This tree tolerates exposed sites and grows in full sun or partial shade on a wide range of soil types, even on soils over chalk.
Did you know?
This tree dates from 1858 and is a sport (mutation) of pink hawthorn that was found in Herfordshire and was noted to have flowers of a more vibrant and far deeper shade.
- Mature height
- Small - 5-10 metres
- 0-5 meters
- Round Headed
- Growth rate
- Soil type
- All soil types
- Sun levels
- Full sun
- Partial shade
- Difficulty/hard to grow
- Season of interest
- Autumn colour
- Small leaves
- Flower colour
- Flowering type
- Flowering month
- Scented Flowers
- Berries/fruit colour
- Garden Tree
- Small garden Tree
- City/Urban Sites
- Bird Food
Pruning Crataegus Paul’s Scarlet
Crataegus Paul’s Scarlet will naturally branch from the base, but can be trained as a standard with a clear stem of up to 2m. Train over several years, annually removing the lowest lateral stems. Congestion of the crown is something to watch out for; remove stems that are severely crossing to limit any damage.
What time of year is best to prune? Prune in winter, or light prune in spring after flowering.
For the continued healthy growth of your trees, shrubs or hedging it is vital that you follow the advice below.
The main reason that plants die within 12 months of having been planted is lack of water. It is essential throughout the spring and summer, to give a heavy enough watering to enable the water to penetrate right down to the deepest root level of the tree. In hot dry spells give the equivalent of 2 bucketfuls every three days.
One of the most common causes of lack of water is competition from grass. When trees are first establishing, the grass roots would be at the same level as the tree roots and are far more efficient at taking up water and thus choke the tree. It is vital for 3 years after planting that your tree or hedge has a circle or strip one metre wide completely free of grass. The way to eliminate grass in order of effectiveness is:
- Spray off the grass with a glyphosate based weed killer such as Roundup. Apply each year for the first 3 years. It is best applied when the tree is dormant as it is absorbed through green leaves and kills the plant off at the roots.
- Firmly fit a mulch mat around the base of the tree by tucking the edges into the soil and put a thick layer of bark mulch on top of this. This can be done after the initial spraying with glyphosate and should avoid the need for further spraying.
Mowing or strimming is NOT an answer to the problem. Each time you mow, the grass will grow back more vigorously and strimming invariably leads to lacerated trunks.
If trees are not correctly secured they will rock in the planting pit. Roots not firmly in contact with the soil are unable to take up moisture and nutrients, resulting in die back or death of the tree. Check, particularly after windy weather, that stakes are still solidly in the ground keeping the base of the trunk firm. The purpose of the stakes is to anchor the roots. Flexing in the wind, higher up the trunk, is not necessarily a problem if the roots are firm.
Bellow is list of the correct system to use to secure your trees.
- 40/60, 60/80, 80/100 whips - Unless rabbit/deer problem no need to stake.
- 100/125, 125/150 1.2m Cane and Easi tie.
- 150/175 1.2m square stake and a buckle tie and spacer.
- 175/250, 6/8, 8/10 15L 1.65 Tree stake and a buckle tie and spacer.
- All larger trees. 2 x 1.65 Tree stake and cross rail with 38mm cushion spacer and 1m of 38mm strapping.
Always use our recommended tree ties or strapping. These are designed and manufactured with the correct amount of give to hold the tree firm without strangling it. They should be checked at the end of each growing season for adjustment as the trunk thickens. Non proprietary materials such as baler twine will cut into the bark and should not be used.
Protection from Animal Damage
Rabbits, deer, sheep, cattle and horses can all potentially damage trees. Ask us for advice on the most appropriate guards for your trees or hedge. Squirrels are also a terrible pest when trees get to about 20ft tall but there is no protection available.