Book of Mediterranean Trees, Shrubs and Climbers


Crataegus azarolus  Azarole
Family Rosaceae
Genus Crataegus  [kra-TE-gus]  Gr. krataigos, believed to be derived from kratos, strength, alluding to the hardness of the wood
Species azarolus   
Properties tree
Crataegus azarolus is a species of hawthorn known by the common names azarole, azerole, and Mediterranean medlar. It is native to the Mediterranean Basin and is a common plant there, growing on sites comparable to those the European common hawthorn grows on. In the Arabic-speaking countries it is the commonest of the hawthorn species; in the Arabic language the term "common hawthorn" means the azarole hawthorn. When growing in the wild the azerole bears plentiful crops of haw fruits, which are similar to the haws of the European common hawthorn, but plumper. C. azarolus is often divided into subspecies or varieties, for example Christensen in his monograph uses four varieties: * C. azarolus var. azarolus has orange fruit. * C. azarolus var. aronia L., has yellowish fruit often with some red tinges * C. azarolus var. chlorocarpa (Moris) K.I.Chr. has yellowish fruit * C. azarolus var. pontica (K.Koch) K.I.Chr. has yellowish or orange fruit C. azarolus has been used historically for a number of medicinal purposes.
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ripe fruit
green fruit