Plant Base Online (beta)
common name: Blackthorn, Sloe, Draenen ddu
full sun, part shade
moist soil, clay soil, sandy soil, coastal
preferred soil pH: any
minimum temp: -23°C
USDA zone: 5 to 9
Large densely branched shrub or a small bushy tree. The spiny branches are covered in numerous small white flowers in March or early April, before the leaves appear. Produces edible but tart, blue-black fruits in autumn. Dark grey-brown bark.
Likes a moist soil and sun or part shade. Not fussy.
From seed or by cuttings. Also by separation of rooted suckers where available.
A traditional country hedgerow plant. The fruits are used in making preserves and for flavourings.
Wood is used for walking sticks and the Irish shillelagh. In folklore blackthorn is favoured by witches for making staffs or wands. Also makes good firewood, burns slowly and with little smoke.
A British native tree and widely distributed throught Europe to Russia.