Spindle tree identification
The Spindle Euonymous europaeus is a bushy tree native to Europe, including Britain, Turkey and the Caucasus. It 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 and butchers skewers. Many parts of the tree are poisonous, especially the fruit. It is a member of the Euonymus genus, from which a huge number of ornamental garden plants have been developed.
Spindle tree identification – opposite blackthorn-like leaves, tiny flowers in spring and unique 4-lobed pink fruit capsules in autumn. 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.
The leaves are Blackthorn-shaped but arranged opposite one another on the shoot. Blackthorn leaves are alternate.
The flower is tiny. Each flower has 4 yellow-green petals and 4 upright green stamens tipped with yellow anthers
In some years the trees are heavily loaded with fruit in late October. It has a very unusual looking fruit which is in the form of orange berries in a 4-lobed pink capsule.