A tree up to 20 ft high, with glabrous branchlets, becoming purplish brown by the end of the season; thorns 11⁄2 to 2 in. long. Leaves roundish obovate, 2 to 3 in. long, 11⁄4 to 21⁄2 in. wide, broadly wedge-shaped at the base, abruptly pointed, more or less lobed towards the apex, sharply toothed, at first downy beneath, soon glabrous; dark green and glossy above; veins parallel, in four to seven pairs. Flowers white, 3⁄4 in. across, produced in early June in rounded corymbs, 3 in. or more across; flower-stalks hairy, and calyx usually so; stamens fifteen to twenty, anthers pink; styles two or three; fruit globose, bright red, 1⁄2 in. diameter.
Native of eastern N. America, and a close ally of C. tomentosa. It has the same deep longitudinal pits in the seeds (nutlets), but differs in the midrib and veins of the leaf being more deeply sunken on the upper side, and in the fruit being globose rather than oval, and of a deeper, brighter red. It is also a more vigorous and thorny tree.