Dotted haw was grown in Finland during the period of autonomy under the Russian Czars (i.e. up to Independence in 1917), but has since been forgotten and has almost completely disappeared. Seed was collected by the Mustila expedition of 1996 from northern parts of New York State, striking the eye of the collectors with its unusual light green obovate foliage, which made it stand out in the landscape. This colour is most striking in spring when the new foliage flushes emerald green on the ash-grey thorny branches.
Of course, the shrub is also beautiful when it flowers in early summer, the flowers rather large for a hawthorn. The berries which develop in autumn are red or yellow with unusual spotting, which is reflected in both the scientific and English common names. Like many other excellent hawthorns, this species grows with age into a small but picturesque broad tree if it is allowed to grow in peace, without trimming.