I was looking to plant this Washington Hawthorne when I found the Variable Skink. I found a place uphill in the food forest that was damp and partly shady.
This nice wildlife tree is native to the southeastern US, not my first pick for the mountains of New Mexico, although Washington Hawthorne is quite widespread throughout the country.
It maxes out at about 30×30 feet, but more likely to stay under 12 feet here. It is beloved of squirrels and birds for its berries and butterflies for its panicles of white flowers. I planted it within sight of my garden and hope it makes it. Several native shrubs, a tiny pinyon, and grasses are growing there in the extra moisture. It grows faster than the rrest and is short lived. By the time the Pinyon Pine dominates it will be gone.
The berries are red and edible, steam extracted for jelly or dried for teas. I just boiled and strained the berries in the past and made jelly that way.
The fruits and flowers both have a hypotensive effect and are considered a direct heart tonic best for a weak heart with high blood pressure. For this mild tonic, use as a tea or tincture over a long period.
I have made a pleasant tea from Washington Hawthorne both in Dallas and Seattle where it is common in suburban gardens. I would not say that I need a heart tonic, but as we all get older, you never know. It takes several years to mature enough for flowering and berry making.
In the right conditions, Washington Hawthorne is very easy and quick. I admit that our long drought makes it seem as though none of these new trees and shrubs have a chance; however the drought seems broken for now and seedlings are coming up throughout the food forest.