Sunday, 13 September 2015

Prunus spinosa

Prunus spinosa Blackthorn/Sloe


This deciduous shrub or small tree is native to Europe, Asia and NW Africa. It has now naturalised in New Zealand and eastern United States. It can grow to an height of 5 metres and has very thorny branches. It has creamy white flowers that appear in early spring before the Hawthorn, and produces drupes, or sloes in the autumn. They can be used to make Sloe Gin as it is called in the UK, or a liquor in other parts of the world. The bark of the shrub is very dark, hence its name, and makes good fire wood.

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