Pronounciation: Ra-fee-o-LEP-is IN-di-a
Sunset 8-10, 12-24
USDA 8 (sometimes foliage in winter is damaged by cold)-11
Landscape Use: In Phoenix, Indian hawthorn is a serviceable shrub for many types of mesic and oasis design themes such as a flowering accent, foundation plantings, border shrub, small informal hedge, tree standards (mostly seen in southern California landscapes), and bonzai.
Form & Character: Rounded, informal, clean, well behaved.
Growth Habit: Evergreen woody perennial shrub, moderate to slow growth habit ranging in height from 2 to 8 feet in height depending on cultivar.
Foliage/texture: Leathery green, new growth often reddish, oblong to lanceolate to 2 to 3 inches long, sometimes tinged with purple, oval leaves with sometimes crenate margins; medium texture.
Flowers & fruits: Flowers grown on many 1 to 2 inch terminal panicle clusters, individual flowers small, ranging in color from white, pink to wine red; fruit is a small black drupe borne in summer and fall.
Seasonal color: Brilliant display of flowers mostly in Phoenix during March.
Temperature: Indian hawthorn is tolerant to 10oF, but foliage is damaged if temperatures exceeds 115oF.
Light: Full sun to partial shade, not for full shade, eastern exposure best in Phoenix.
Soil: Tolerant except of high alkalinity where intervenal chlorosis will develop.
Watering: Mildly drought tolerant, but looks much better with some regular water especally during summer.
Pruning: Little, except to rarely use heading cuts to promote shape. Prune in May only after bloom.
Propagation: Seed, though vegetative softwood cuttings are best.
Disease and pests: Aphids, firelight, and bacterial leaf spot during periods of moist cool weather (like that ever happens in Phoenix).
Additional comments: Indian Hawthorn is an outstanding and serviceable landscape shrub that is widely used across the entire southern half of the United States. There are many terrific cultivars for various forms (upright to prostrate) and flower colors (white to wine red). Some of the older, reliable cultivars include:
'Ballerina' (dwarf and prostrate)
'Cosmic White' - giant white flowers introduced from Australia
'Jack Evans' (medium size and mounding, purple foliage and deep pink flowers) - this IS my all time favorite Indian hawthorn cultivar.
'Enchantress' (vigorous and upright, pink flowers)
'Clara' (dense, very rounded and symmetrical, white flowers)
'Pink Cloud' (vigorous and asymmetrical, pink flowers)