The Crataegus laevigata also known as the Midland Hawthorn is native to Central and Western Europe. Growing in dense woodlands, hedge banks and heavy soils, the shrub belongs to the Rosaceae family and goes by the common name Mayflower. This large shrub has the ability to grow into a small tree, which is dense, has a thorny cover and can be up to 8 to 10 m in height. The leaves are shiny, three-lobed and dark green in colour. The flowers look creamy-white and appear in clusters sometime in the middle of April. The fruits are oval in shape and red-coloured berries containing two seeds.
The genus of this plant has around 280 species out of which 60 belong to Europe and Asia. The hawthorn berries are widely used in herbal medicinal preparations. The leaves and flowers contain more active substances and are used in the treatment of several ailments:
Heart and blood vessel conditions
Preventive therapy for impaired cardiac function
Can be successfully administered at early stages of heart failure
For the prevention of angina pectoris
Improves blood circulation
Induces better digestion
Known to dissolve kidney stones
Soothe the nerves to provide a good sleep
The Crataegus laevigata contains ingredients that can promote hair growth. The size and number of hair follicles are increased proving it to be a promising remedy for hair loss.