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English Whitebeam

Sorbus anglica

Please keep in mind that it is illegal to uproot a plant without the landowner's consent and care should be taken at all times not to damage wild plants. Wild plants should never be picked for pleasure and some plants are protected by law.
For more information please download the BSBI Code of Conduct PDF document.


Plant Profile

Flowering Months:
Rosaceae (Rose)
Also in this family:
Acute Leaf-lobed Lady's-mantle, Alpine Cinquefoil, Alpine Lady's-mantle, Ampfield Cotoneaster, Arran Service Tree, Arran Whitebeam, Barren Strawberry, Bastard Agrimony, Bastard Service Tree, Bearberry Cotoneaster, Bird Cherry, Blackthorn, Bloody Whitebeam, Bramble, Bristol Whitebeam, Broad-leaved Whitebeam, Broadtooth Lady's-mantle, Bronze Pirri-pirri-bur, Bullace Plum, Bullate Cotoneaster, Burnet Rose, Catacol Whitebeam, Caucasian Lady's-mantle, Cheddar Whitebeam, Cherry Laurel, Cherry Plum, Chinese Photinia, Cloudberry, Clustered Lady's-mantle, Common Agrimony, Common Hawthorn, Common Lady's-mantle, Common Medlar, Common Ninebark, Common Whitebeam, Crab Apple, Creeping Chinese Bramble, Creeping Cinquefoil, Crimean Lady's-mantle, Cultivated Apple, Cultivated Pear, Cut-leaved Blackberry, Damson, Devon Whitebeam, Dewberry, Diel's Cotoneaster, Dog Rose, Doward Whitebeam, Dropwort, Elm-leaved Bramble, Entire-leaved Cotoneaster, False Salmonberry, Field Rose, Firethorn, Fodder Burnet, Fragrant Agrimony, Franchet's Cotoneaster, Garden Lady's-mantle, Garden Strawberry, Giant Meadowsweet, Glaucous Dog Rose, Goatsbeard Spiraea, Gough's Rock Whitebeam, Great Burnet, Greengage Plum, Grey-leaved Whitebeam, Hairless Lady's-mantle, Hairy Lady's-mantle, Hautbois Strawberry, Himalayan Blackberry, Himalayan Cotoneaster, Himalayan Whitebeam, Hoary Cinquefoil, Hollyberry Cotoneaster, Hupeh Rowan, Hybrid Cinquefoil, Hybrid Geum, Irish Whitebeam, Japanese Cherry, Japanese Quince, Japanese Rose, Jew's Mallow, Juneberry, Lancaster Whitebeam, Late Cotoneaster, Least Lady's-mantle, Least Whitebeam, Leigh Woods Whitebeam, Ley's Whitebeam, Liljefor's Whitebeam, Littleleaf Cotoneaster, Llangollen Whitebeam, Llanthony Whitebeam, Lleyn Cotoneaster, Loganberry, Many-flowered Rose, Margaret's Whitebeam, Marsh Cinquefoil, Meadowsweet, Midland Hawthorn, Mougeot's Whitebeam, Mountain Ash, Mountain Avens, Mountain Sibbaldia, Moupin's Cotoneaster, No Parking Whitebeam, Ocean Spray, Orange Whitebeam, Pale Bridewort, Pale Lady's-mantle, Parsley Piert, Pirri-pirri-bur, Plymouth Pear, Portuguese Laurel, Purple-flowered Raspberry, Quince, Raspberry, Rock Cinquefoil, Rock Lady's-mantle, Rock Whitebeam, Round-leaved Dog Rose, Round-leaved Whitebeam, Rum Cherry, Russian Cinquefoil, Salad Burnet, Sargent's Rowan, Scannell's Whitebeam, Service Tree, Sharp-toothed Whitebeam, Sherard's Downy Rose, Shining Lady's-mantle, Ship Rock Whitebeam, Short-styled Rose, Shrubby Cinquefoil, Silver Lady's-mantle, Silverweed, Slender Parsley Piert, Slender-spined Bramble, Small-flowered Sweetbriar, Small-leaved Sweetbriar, Soft Downy Rose, Somerset Whitebeam, Sorbaria, Sour Cherry, Southern Downy Rose, Southern Lady's-mantle, Spineless Acaena, Spring Cinquefoil, St. Lucie's Cherry, Steeplebush, Stern's Cotoneaster, Stirton's Whitebeam, Stone Bramble, Sulphur Cinquefoil, Swedish Service Tree, Swedish Whitebeam, Sweet Briar, Symond's Yat Whitebeam, Tengyueh Cotoneaster, Thimbleberry, Thin-leaved Whitebeam, Tibetan Cotoneaster, Tormentil, Trailing Tormentil, Tree Cotoneaster, Trefoil Cinquefoil, Twin-cliffs Whitebeam, Two-spined Acaena, Wall Cotoneaster, Water Avens, Waterer's Cotoneaster, Waxy Lady's-mantle, Welsh Cotoneaster, Welsh Whitebeam, White Burnet, White's Whitebeam, White-stemmed Bramble, Wild Cherry, Wild Pear, Wild Plum, Wild Service Tree, Wild Strawberry, Willmott's Whitebeam, Willow-leaved Bridewort, Willow-leaved Cotoneaster, Wineberry, Wood Avens, Wye Whitebeam, Yellow-flowered Strawberry
Deciduous tree
Life Cycle:
Maximum Size:
8 metres tall
Cliffs, scrub, woodland.

White, 5 petals
Clusters of white flowers. Flowers have pink anthers.
Reddish purple berries with small lens-shaped scars (lenticels).
Oval leaves with small lobes and large teeth. The leaves are greyish beneath and are wider than those of most Whitebeam species.
Frequency (UK):
Rarely seen  

Similar Species

Other Information


Sorbus anglica, also known as the English Whitebeam, is a species of whitebeam tree that is native to the United Kingdom. It is a small to medium-sized tree, growing up to 25 feet tall, with white flowers and red berries. The leaves are glossy green, turning yellow and orange in the fall. The tree is known for its attractive bark and its ability to thrive in a variety of soil conditions. It is considered as a valuable ornamental tree.


English Whitebeam: A Rare and Beautiful Tree

The English Whitebeam, also known as Sorbus anglica, is a unique and beautiful species of tree that is native to the UK. It is a part of the rose family and is characterized by its striking white flowers, red fruits, and deeply lobed leaves. This tree is often found growing in the wild in woodlands, cliffs, and rocky outcrops across England and Wales.

One of the most distinctive features of the English Whitebeam is its delicate and creamy white flowers that bloom in early summer. These flowers are followed by clusters of small, red berries that persist throughout the winter months and provide a valuable food source for birds and other wildlife. The leaves of the English Whitebeam are also noteworthy, with their glossy green appearance and deep lobes that add texture and interest to the tree's canopy.

Despite its beauty and ecological importance, the English Whitebeam is a rare and declining species that is considered to be vulnerable to extinction. This is due to a combination of factors, including habitat destruction, climate change, and disease. As a result, it is protected by law and is considered to be a priority species for conservation efforts in the UK.

In addition to its rarity, the English Whitebeam is also notable for its cultural and historical significance. This tree has been used in traditional folklore and legends, and is said to have been used by druids in ancient rituals. It is also believed to have been the source of the legendary 'Rowan Tree' that was thought to have protective powers and was used to ward off evil spirits.

In conclusion, the English Whitebeam is a rare and beautiful tree that is deserving of protection and preservation. Its delicate flowers, striking berries, and unique leaves make it a valuable and attractive addition to any woodland or garden, while its cultural and historical significance add to its importance. If you have the opportunity to see an English Whitebeam, take a moment to appreciate its beauty and appreciate the efforts being made to conserve this rare and valuable species.

Distribution Map

Reproduced by kind permission of the BSBI.

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