9 Causes of Hawthorn Tree Leaves Turning Brown- Solutions

After noticing my plants for the last few days, I came to understand that my hawthorn tree leaves are turning brown due to light problems, underwatering, cultural management problems, sapwood injury, imperfect soil, cold stress, temperature shock, insect attack, disease susceptibility. 

To save my plant, I tried several ways. Among them, some steps worked surprisingly and I found my plant back along with its beautiful foliage. That’s why I also want to share those with you so that you may also save your plant easily.

Before entering the detailed discussion, I have presented them shortly in the below table.

Light ProblemAllow full sunlight to partial shade
UnderwateringWater the plant properly
Cultural Management ProblemsBe conscious while performing these activities 
Sapwood injuryUse fence or hedge shrubs around the tree
Imperfect soilPlant in sandy loam and nutrient-enriched enriched soil
Cold stressCover the plant and water regularly 
Transplant shockMake the elements available so that the plant can adjust to the new environment 
InsectsUse industrial insecticides or homemade solutions
Disease affectionUse bactericide, fungicide or homemade recipes 

Why Are the Hawthorn Tree Leaves Turning Brown- 9 Causes With Solutions

Hawthorn Tree Leaves Turning Brown

1. Light Problem

Light is a mandatory criterion for a plant and that’s why I always check the light issue when I notice any problem with my hawthorn plant. I several times observed that my plant gets disturbed when they face excessive scorching sunlight or too much shade.

The hawthorn tree leaves become brown due to too much sunlight. In maximum cases, the entire portions or edges of the leaves are found brown and look like they are burnt with fire. 

Control Measures

The Hawthorn tree thrives in direct sunlight in the morning. After that, they need partial shade during the afternoon time as the sunlight of that time scorches the leaves. So, try to provide such sunlight to your plant.

2. Underwatering

Next, I can mention the underwatering problems as the reason behind hawthorn tree leaves turning brown. Sometimes, you may find that the Leaf tips are getting brown even though you have provided sunlight to the plant. At the time, the problem occurred due to underwatering.

The leaves cannot tolerate drought or the absence of water. As a huge rate of transpiration process remains always active, they need a continuous supply of water. 

If they cannot get the water, the leaves become stressed and that is expressed through the leaf tips. The stomata of those portions are destroyed and such color appears instead of green color.

Control Measures

Water your plant regularly. You may check the soil dryness by pinching your finger inside them. They need more water during summer times than in winter. Hence, make the best supervision that the top soil should always be wet.

3. Cultural Management Problem

Also, unplanned cultural management practices may cause the problem of leaves browning in Hawthorne. Cultural operation means weeding, mulching, thinning, earthing, etc. activities that are done to improve the soil condition as well as the plant environment. 

Whenever these practices are not properly performed, it creates a negative impact on the plant. The plant remains under stress and as a result, the leaves become brown and look pale.

Control Measures

In the case of mulching, there are several components, but they are specific to certain points. That’s why you have to choose mulches carefully after studying their activities. 

Such as, in summer, you need to conserve moisture in the soil. But if you use carbon in this case, it will reserve the radiation in the soil and will keep the soil hot which is deteriorating for the plant. So you have to choose water hyacinth, rice husk, or straw in this case.

On the other hand, you should be careful while weeding and earthing up so that your hand hoe or spade may not damage the root system. Training or pruning should also be done carefully to keep the plant unstressed. 

4. Sapwood Injury

Sapwood means the softer portion of the trunk that remains outside of the central heartwood. Sometimes sapwood is injured due to different mechanical issues or human activities. In such a condition, the vascular bundles are hampered.

Consequently, the xylem and phloem tissues cannot complete their activities as they are injured. Thus, the water, nutrients, and food conducting processes are hampered. Also, the leaves cannot get proper materials for their food production and improvement and become brown.

Control Measures

The hawthorn tree should be free from any kind of injury. You can make a fence around the tree so that the plant may not face any type of injury or other problems. Planting small hedge crops may also protect your plant from damage.

5. Imperfect Soil

Soil medium is the most important issue for the plant. Inappropriate soil conditions may initiate brown leaves. If the soil has not had enough nutrient properties, it cannot provide enough nutrient materials. 

Again, soil moisture and aeration level also determine the growth and development of the soil. In case of excessive moisture, plants cannot transpire or respire perfectly. At the same time, they cannot conduct adequate materials for photosynthesis. As a result, the plant gets stressed and brown leaves are initiated.

Control Measures

Sandy loam and well-drained soil are perfect for a hawthorn plant. The aeration and water retaining quality are better in sandy loam soil. You can also mix coco-peat, perlite, bone meal, and sphagnum moss to increase the nutrient content in the plant. 

6. Cold Stress

Cold stress is a common problem in temperate regions. Though it can withstand a wide range of temperatures, too low a temperature can create obstacles in plant improvement. 

Cool temperature makes the water freeze in the soil. As a result, plant roots cannot supply that water to the plant due to the ice or snow forming. Thus, water shortage is created in the plant. 

Control Measures

Cover your tree with polythene shades or any other shades during frost so that the frost cannot fall on the leaves. Water your plant perfectly so that ice bars cannot stand in the soil.

7. Transplant Shock

Transplant shock occurs at that time when you fail to provide a perfect environment for the plant. Consequently, the plant cannot get enough favorable surroundings to adjust and again improve and the leaves start to become brown.

Control Measures

Transplanting is a matter of skills and experience. If you are transplanting a plant for the first time, you need to be very conscious so that the root system is not disturbed. 

Again, as the plant has to adjust to a new environment, you have to provide all necessary elements like temperature, water, light, and humidity correctly. 

8. Pests

At this phase, I will describe one of the most deteriorating causes of hawthorn leaves browning. The most common pests that attack this plant are-

  • Aphid
  • Mealybug
  • Mites
  • Brown Plant Hoppers 

They eat the tender leaves and suck the cell sap of the leaves. That’s why the green parts of the leaves are disturbed and due to inadequate food production, the leaves become brown.

Control Measures

To save your plant from insects, the first thing you may do is to remove them by handpicking if they are small in population. You may also huge a strong water stream to remove them.

But if they are huge in number, you cannot remove them in this way. At this time, you have to use the Best Hawthorn fertilizers (Our pick: Miracle-Gro 3002010 Shake ‘N Feed All Purpose Continuous Release Plant) or homemade recipes. In the case of using pesticides, follow the precautionary rules described on the label of the bottle.

Otherwise, if chemicals are not available near you, you can also make remedies in your home by making homemade solutions. I have mentioned two of them here-

  • Solution 1: Baking soda

Mix 4 tablespoons of baking soda in 1 gallon of water. After mixing properly, pour or spray them in the affected parts. 

  • Solution 2: Neem oil 

Take 1 teaspoon of concentrated neem oil, ¼ teaspoon of aloe vera powder, a few drops of essential oil, and 1 tablespoon of liquid soap. Mix them properly in 1 gallon of water and spray on the plant. Don’t use much of the elements as excessive liquid soap will create toxicity to the plant.

9. Diseases

Besides the pests, some diseases also may attack the plant and can make the leaves brown. Some common diseases are-

  • Verticillium wilt 
  • Fire blight 

Control Measures

Remove the affected parts fast so that the spores cannot spread more. Then apply fungicides or bactericides to the plant. You can also use homemade recipes that I explained in the pest section.

Can Hawthorn Leaves Become Green Again?

Green Hawthorn Leaves

A fully brown hawthorn leaf cannot be green again. As the pigments destroy and the leaves cannot produce new chlorophyll in the affected parts, the leaves cannot get their past appearance. 

On the contrary, if a leaf is affected a little and just has started to brown a small portion, it may revive again. Intensive caring of the plant can make those leaves vibrant and green perfectly. But daily caring is needed for that purpose. 

Otherwise, the leaves will become completely brown and it is better to remove the brown leaves for plant growth purposes. 

How To Revive The Hawthorn Leaves?

Revive Hawthorn Leaves

In the case of reviving the hawthorn leaves, the first activity should be pruning. Pruning indicates the cutting of the affected parts. Such cultural management will help to stop the dissemination of pests or diseases. 

Again, when these parts are removed, the plant will no longer need to provide nutrients and food to those places. As a result, it can use these foods for producing energy to initiate new leaves and stems. Thus, the plant can be saved. 

Else, you should be careful about the microclimate if all the mandatory elements are perfect or not. Make favorable conditions around the plant so that it doesn’t need to focus or use its energy to compete for survival. 

Make a sound surrounding in which they can only concentrate on their growth and development. Thus, they can accumulate more dry matter and will become vigorous again.

Caring Guides For Hawthorn tree

Soil typeSandy loam soil with good aeration quality and enough nutrients 
Watering Water regularly in case of the soil is dry
Sunlight Direct full sunlight to a little shading
Temperature The optimum temperature is 10°F to 115°F
Humidity  60% or more
PruningThe disease-affected or pest-infected parts should be removed
Fertilizer Apply chemical fertilizers or bone meal and fish meal once a year
Pest attack Use pesticide or homemade recipes to eradicate pests


Can A Hawthorn Grow Well In Alkaline Soil?

No. The soil pH should be slightly acidic or neutral for the good development of a hawthorn plant. Too much alkaline soil creates toxicity and lacks enough nutrients which is deteriorating for a hawthorn plant. 

Can Hawthorn Plants Grow In Clay Soil?

No. A hawthorn plant cannot be grown perfectly in clay soil. Clay soil can retain an excessive amount of water which reduces the air percentage and this hinders the growth of the plant.

How Long Can A Hawthorn Tree Grow?

A mature hawthorn plant may grow almost 15 meters. It is a fast-growing plant that may grow almost 15-25 cm per year. In favorable conditions, they can produce more foliage and can live many years.

Final Thoughts

Meanwhile, I am at the end point of my suggestions. I tried to reflect all the small things of my experience here so that you can relate to your plant and may apply them if necessary. As the explained matters are common to many hawthorn plants, maybe the suggestion will be helpful for you.

You can gain knowledge about the hawthorn tree leaves turning brown and further use it if your plant also faces such unsuitable situations. You are always welcome to apply any of these techniques if you think they will be helpful for your plant. Thus, you can maintain a good-growing hawthorn tree in your yard.

James Rivenburg
James Rivenburg
James Rivenburg

James Rivenburg is the founder of plantandpest.com, a passionate gardener with valuable experience and knowledge gained through trial and error. The website has a large community of followers who trust his tips and techniques and have succeeded with his advice. He is always Committed to helping others create a beautiful and healthy garden.

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