Latin: Crataegus Oxyacanthus
Part Used: fruit, flower, leaf, young twigs
Constituents: flavonoids, vitamin B, vitamin C, choline, acetylcholine, quercetin, triterpenoids, cratetegin, rutin, procyanidin
Medicinal Actions: cardiac tonic, hypotensive, astringent, diuretic
Uses & Combinations
Hawthorn is a hardy plant that can live up to 200 years. Some varieties grow as short, thick hedgerows, while others are stately trees. It will tolerate a variety of conditions, but it helps to choose a species that will thrive in your growing zone.
The berries, leaves, and flowers of the Hawthorn plant are rich in bioflavonoids, antioxidants, and procyanidins, all of which tone the heart. It dilates the arteries and veins, allowing for increased blood flow and the release of blockages. Hawthorn strengthens the heart muscle, regulates blood pressure, and helps to maintain healthy cholesterol levels.
As a tonic, Hawthorn is wonderful for preventing heart problems, but it can also be used as a treatment for heart disease, edema, angina, heart arrhythmia, and blood pressure, both high and low. Hawthorn is particularly valuable for restoring the heart to normal function, as in the case of blood pressure, where it will help to lower that which is too high, or heighten that which is too low. And it does so gently.
In addition to its heart health benefits, Hawthorn aids in stabilizing collagen and supporting ligament, tendon, and muscle health. For those who bruise easily, it will help strengthen the capillaries. It also has value in supporting the emotional heart, to ease grief and sadness.
For high blood pressure, combine Hawthorn with Lime Blossom, Mistletoe, and Yarrow. For the grieving heart, combine with Lemon Balm, Milky Oat Tops, and St. John’s Wort.
Features & Cultivation
In the spring, it flowers with small, clustered white blossoms, which you can harvest when fully developed. In the fall, it bears small red berries, which can be harvested and used fresh, or dried to later use. Harvest the leaves beginning in mid-spring and through early autumn.