Hawthorn Herb or (Crataegus species) is a thorny shrub in the rose family that grows up to 5 feet tall in sunny wooded hillsides throughout the world. Its flowers grow in small white, red, or pink clusters and bloom in May. Small red or black berries, called haws, sprout and ripen after the flowers. Hawthorn leaves are shiny and grow in a variety of shapes and sizes. The berries have been used to treat various heart problems including irregular heartbeat, high blood pressure, chest pain, hardening of the arteries, and heart failure. Hawthorn contains many substances that than assist the heart in it’s function. The leaves and flowers are used medicinally more often than the berries.
Medicinal properties include: Antispasmodic, sedative, tonic.
Hawthorn is useful in high blood pressure treatment as well as low blood pressure because of it’s ability to strengthen the heart. Also good for nervous tension and sleeplessness.
Common dosage is 1 or 2 capsules daily or if making a tea, steep 1 teaspoonfiul of the flowers to a one-half cup of water.
Other common names include: English Hawthorn, May bush, May tree, quick-set, thorn-apple tree, whitethorn, haw.