Crataegus 'Vaughn'
Common Name: cockspur thorn 
Type: Tree
Family: Rosaceae
Zone: 4 to 7
Height: 15.00 to 30.00 feet
Spread: 15.00 to 30.00 feet
Bloom Time: April to May
Bloom Description: White
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium
Suggested Use: Street Tree, Flowering Tree
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Leaf: Good Fall
Attracts: Birds
Fruit: Showy, Edible
Other: Thorns


Best grown in moist but well-drained soils in full sun. Tolerates light shade.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Crataegus is a genus of more than 200 species of mostly deciduous trees and shrubs from north temperate areas.

Genus name comes from the Greek name for the tree. From kratos meaning strength for its strong, hard wood.

'Vaughn' is a thorny hybrid hawthorn tree that typically grows to 15-20' (sometime to 30') tall with a rounded crown and horizontal branching. It is reportedly a cross between Crataegus phaenopyrum (Washington hawthorn) and Crataegus crus-galli (cockspur hawthorn). It was originally selected around 1954 from a group of C. phaenopyrum seedlings at the New Augusta Nursery in Indianapolis, Indiana, and subsequently was introduced into commerce in 1968-69 by the Simpson Orchard Company of Vincennes, Indiana. Fragrant, 5-petaled, white flowers (1/2" diameter) bloom in clusters (corymbs) in spring. Flowers are followed by abundant, glossy, red fruits (1/4" diameter) that ripen in fall. Fruits may persist on the tree throughout winter. Fruits are attractive to birds. Lobed, dark green leaves (to 3" long) with serrate margins sometimes produce showy red fall color. The fruits of hawthorn trees are sometimes called haws.


'Vaughn' is susceptible to cedar hawthorn rust. Fire blight, fungal leaf spots, powdery mildew, cankers and apple scab are occasional problems. Insect pests include borers, caterpillars, lacebugs, leafminers and scale.


Small flowering landscape tree for lawns or streets. Specimen, small groups or screen. May be pruned as a hedge. Containers.