Spindle Tree in Autumn with all images and text taken from the book Field Guide to the Trees of Britain and Europe published by Reed New Holland in 2017, author Alan Birkett and ISBN 9781921517839
Spindle Tree in autumn
Spindle Tree fruit in autumn


The Spindle Euonymous europaeus is a bushy tree native to Europe, including Britain, Turkey and the Caucasus. The first photo shows a Spindle tree in a churchyard in September. The second photo shows the fruit in September. The Spindle is common in hedges and woods on lime-rich soils and has been planted in many gardens. Its wood is hard and fine-grained and was used to make spindles for wool spinning. The small white flowers appear in May. It has a very unusual looking fruit, which is in the form of orange berries in a 4-lobed pink capsule. The leaves are similar to Blackthorn but paired and opposite. It is a member of the Euonymus genus, from which a huge number of ornamental garden plants have been developed. 

Spindle Tree fruit
Spindle Tree leaves
The first photo shows the unusual fruits in autumn. The second photo shows that the leaves are Blackthorn-shaped but arranged opposite one another on the shoot. Blackthorn leaves are alternate.