Crataegus monogyna – Common hawthorn


Family: Rosaceae
Latin name: Crataegus monogyna 
English name: Common Hawthorn, one-seed Hawthorn
Chinese name: 
Ayurveda name:
Unani name:
Greek name: Κράταιγος
Japanese name: 
Korean name:

Parts used : Berries, Leaves, Flowers

Crataegus monogyna along with Crataegus laevigata are used in the Western herbal tradition. It also happens that these two species are able to hybridize. Sometimes Crataegus pentagyna, which is native to the Balkans, is used instead of the former two.


Found throughout the temperate zones of the North Hemisphere.


Berries, leaves, and flowers of hawthorn are phytochemically similar in composition, differing primarily in the ratio of specific flavonoids and procyanidins present.[1] Crataegus fruit contain less of the major flavones (vitexin-2-rhamnoside, rutin and hyperoside) found in the flowers and leaves. [2]

The major components are:

  • Rutin
  • Vitexin
  • Vitexin-2 Rhamnoside
  • Acetylvitexin-2 Rhamnoside

In the inflorescence: flavonol glycosides, mainly in the form of
hyperoside, spiraeoside and rutin, are present. The primary flavonoid
derivatives in the leaves are epi-catechin (epi-catechol) and/or catechin (ca-
techol), and the related procyanidins formed during condensation of 2–8
monomeric units of the above catechins , together with oligomeric

These anthocyanidins and proanthocyanidins  have a bioactive action and one of their functions is increasing intracellular Vitamin C  levels. They are able to stabilizlize and protect Vitamin C from oxidation. [4]

It also contains Cardiotonic amines (e.g., phenylethylamine, o-methoxy-phenylethylamine, tyramine, isobutylamine)




In traditional chinese medicine they use Crataegus pinnatifida.


Rasa (taste):
Virya (energy):
Vipaka (post-digestive effect) :
Guna (quality):
Dhatu (tissue):
Srotas (channels):

Dosha Effect:


It is usually prescribed by herbalists for

Crataegus while normally is not considered a nervine it has shown an efficacy to reduce cardiac symptoms of anxiety such as palpitations and increased blood pressure. When used in combination with Passiflora patients have shown a lower score in the Hamilton Anxiety Rating scale (HAM-A). [3]

Other Cultures:


Mechanisms of action of Crataegus postulated to date reveal a remedy with potentially broad-based influence on the cardiovascular system. These effects include a hypotensive activity via vasorelaxation resulting from nitrous oxide stimulation, significant antioxidant activity, and a tonic action on cardiac myocytes. [1]

One of the actions of Crataegus is the stabilizing of Collagen it achieves that by:

  • Reinforcement of the natural cross-linking of collagen that
    forms the collagen matrix of connective tissue (e.g., ground sub-
    stance, cartilage, tendon)[4]
  • Prevention of free radical damage due to potent antioxidant
    and free radical scavenging action.[4]
  • Inhibition of enzymatic cleavage by enzymes secreted by leuko-
    cytes during inflammation.[4]
  • Prevention of the release and synthesis of compounds that pro-
    mote inflammation, such as histamine, serine proteases, prosta-
    glandins, and leukotrienes.[4]


Other Uses:


Pest management:


A juice is made from the berries that is very acidic, something that is not very agreeable with some people. Also  a liquor can be made from the berries.

Buds and young leaves have a delicate taste and can be used in salads.

Safety Toxicity:

Generally it is considered very safe by practitioners. In fact there is no known overdose quantity. It has a mild effect and it is recommended for long term usage in order to show any beneficial effects. [3] It is usually taken for 4 to 8 weeks to show positive results. [5]


  1. Tassell MC, Kingston R, Gilroy D, Lehane M, Furey A. Hawthorn (Crataegus spp.) in the treatment of cardiovascular disease. Pharmacognosy Reviews. 2010;4(7):32-41. doi:10.4103/0973-7847.65324.
  2. Janick, Jules, and Robert E. Paull. The encyclopedia of fruit & nuts. Wallingford, U.K. Cambridge, Mass: CABI North American Office, 2008. Print.
  3. Yarnell, Eric, Kathy Abascal, and Bob Rountree. Clinical botanical medicine. New Rochelle, NY: Mary Anne Liebert, 2009. Print.
  4. Pizzorno, Joseph E., and Michael T. Murray. Textbook of natural medicine. St. Louis, Mo: Elsevier/Churchill Livingstone, 2013. Print.
  5. Jie Wang, Xingjiang Xiong, and Bo Feng, “Effect of Crataegus Usage in Cardiovascular Disease Prevention: An Evidence-Based Approach,” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, vol. 2013, Article ID 149363, 16 pages, 2013. doi:10.1155/2013/149363

Post Author: costas358

Leave a Reply