Holes in Hawthorn Leaves: Reasons and Solutions

Do you have a Hawthorn tree in your yard and are wondering why the leaves have holes in them? You’re not alone. Many people have been asking this question lately. There can be several reasons why this is happening, but don’t worry, we’ve got solutions for you! In this blog post, we will discuss the possible reasons for holes in Hawthorn leaves and how to fix the problem.

Why Are There Holes in Hawthorn Leaves?

The hawthorn leafminer (Phyllonorycter oxyacanthae) is usually the culprit for holes in Hawthorn leaves. The larvae of this moth hatch and tunnel their way into the leaf, causing the characteristic holes. This insect is most active in late spring and early summer.

Other pests that can cause holes in Hawthorn leaves include aphids, caterpillars, leafhoppers, and beetles. All of these pests feed on the leaves of the hawthorn tree, causing damage that results in holes.

You may not even realize that your Hawthorn tree is infested with pests until you see the holes in the leaves. If you suspect that pests are to blame for the holes in your Hawthorn leaves, it’s essential to act quickly to get rid of the pests and prevent further damage.


The second most common reason for holes in hawthorn leaves is a disease. diseases such as rust, scab, and powdery mildew can cause holes to form in the leaves of the Hawthorn tree. These diseases are caused by fungi that attack the leaves of the tree, causing them to turn yellow or brown and eventually fall off.

Fungal diseases are more common in humid climates and during wet weather. If you live in an area with high humidity, it’s important to take steps to prevent fungal diseases from attacking your hawthorn tree.

How to Treat Hawthorn Leaves with Holes?

Pests need to be removed as soon as possible to save the hawthorn tree. You can do this by spraying the leaves with a strong stream of water from a hose to remove the pests. You can also use an insecticide that is specifically designed to kill the type of pest that is infesting your tree.

I’ve had good success with Neem oil, which is antibacterial, antifungal, antiviral, and antiparasitic. It has been shown to be effective against a wide range of pests and diseases, including all of the pests we have discussed today.

Simply take your neem oil and mix it with water according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Then, use a garden sprayer to apply the neem oil solution to the leaves of your hawthorn tree. Be sure to thoroughly cover all of the affected leaves.

How to Keep Pests Away From Hawthorn Leaves?

Once the pests are gone, you’ll need to take steps to prevent them from coming back. One of the best ways to do this is to keep your hawthorn tree healthy. A healthy tree is more resistant to pests and diseases.

It’s a good idea to keep your garden free of debris and fallen leaves. This will remove potential hiding places for pests. You should also prune your hawthorn tree regularly to remove any dead or diseased branches.

Applying neem oil as a preventative measure can also help to keep pests away. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application and always apply the neem oil solution to the leaves of your hawthorn tree when they are dry.

What Else Causes Holes in Hawthorn Leaves?

There are a few other potential causes of holes in hawthorn leaves, but they are much less common:


Birds, deer, and rabbits can all cause holes in hawthorn leaves. If you suspect that animals are responsible for the holes in your hawthorn leaves, you’ll need to take steps to keep them away from your tree. This may include erecting a fence around your property or using repellents.


Hail, high winds, and severe storms can all cause holes to form in hawthorn leaves. This happens when the leaves are blown around and hit by objects. There is not much you can do to prevent this type of damage, but it is not usually too harmful to the tree.

If you have a juvenile hawthorn tree and a big storm is coming, you may want to cover the tree with a tarp or burlap sack to protect it.

If you have holes in your hawthorn leaves and you’re not sure what’s causing them, it’s a good idea to consult with a professional. They will be able to help you identify the cause of the holes and recommend the best course of treatment.

Should I Prune Hawthorn Leaves with Holes?

Pruning damaged hawthorn leaves can be a good idea if fungal diseases or pests are responsible for the holes. This will remove the affected leaves and help to prevent the spread of disease. Pruning also provides an opportunity for you to inspect the tree for other signs of damage.

If you have a severe infestation of pests, you may need to prune away heavily damaged branches. This will help to prevent the infestation from spreading to other parts of the tree.

When pruning, be sure to use sharp, clean pruning shears. This will help to prevent the spread of disease. Make sure to dispose of all affected leaves and branches in a trash bag. Do not compost them!


In conclusion, holes in hawthorn leaves are usually caused by pests, especially the hawthorn leafminer larvae. However, there are a few other potential causes of holes, including weather damage and animals.

Neem oil fixes most issues with pests that cause holes and it can be used as a preventative measure to keep pests away. Just make sure to keep a close eye on your hawthorn tree and consult with a professional if you are unsure of the cause of the holes or how to treat them.

Happy gardening!

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