TG2203 : Ancient hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna)

taken 1 year ago, near to Dunston, Norfolk, Great Britain

Ancient hawthorn  (Crataegus monogyna)
Ancient hawthorn (Crataegus monogyna)
Mature hawthorn trees > LinkExternal link can grow 15m high and are characterised by their dense, thorny habit and commonly found growing in hedgerows, woods and scrub. The bark is brown-grey, knotted and fissured, and twigs are slender and brown and covered in thorns. Hawthorn is also known as the May-tree, due to its flowering period, and is the only British plant named after the month in which it blooms > LinkExternal link.

Common hawthorn is the foodplant for the caterpillars of many moths, including the hawthorn, orchard ermine, pear leaf blister, rhomboid tortrix, light emerald, lackey, vapourer, fruitlet mining tortrix, small eggar and lappet moths. Its flowers are eaten by dormice and provide nectar and pollen for bees and other pollinating insects. The haws > LinkExternal link are rich in antioxidants and are eaten by many migrating birds such as redwings, fieldfares and thrushes, as well as small mammals. The dense thorny foliage makes excellent nesting shelter for many species of bird.

In Britain, it was believed that bringing hawthorn blossom into the house would be followed by illness and death, and in Medieval times it was said that hawthorn blossom smelled like the Great Plague. Botanists later learned that the chemical trimethylamine in hawthorn blossom is also one of the first chemicals formed in decaying animal tissue, so it is not surprising that hawthorn flowers are associated with death. LinkExternal link
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TG2203, 174 images   (more nearby )
Photographer
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Date Taken
Wednesday, 16 August, 2017   (more nearby)
Submitted
Wednesday, 16 August, 2017
Geographical Context
Wild Animals, Plants and Mushrooms 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TG 2279 0337 [10m precision]
WGS84: 52:34.9478N 1:17.2238E
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! TG 2279 0335
View Direction
NORTH (about 0 degrees)
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