Euonymus europaeus


Spindle is most striking in the autumn when its narrow, oval leaves turn reddish-orange and clusters of bright pink and orange berries hang from its twigs. These berries provide food for all kinds of creatures, including mice, birds and even Foxes, but are poisonous for us. Spindle is a small tree, widespread in woodland edges and hedgerows on limestone soils and is also frequently planted in parks and gardens.

How to identify

Spindle can be recognised by its slightly square stems, smooth, grey bark and its characteristic pink fruits containing bright orange seeds that appear during the autumn and winter.

Where to find it



When to find it

  • January
  • February
  • March
  • April
  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October
  • November
  • December

How can people help

Our native tree species, such as Spindle, provide important links in the food chain for many animals, as well as areas for shelter and nesting. Try planting native species in your garden and see who comes to visit... To find out more about wildlife-friendly gardening, visit our Wild About Gardens website: a joint initiative with the RHS, there's plenty of facts and tips to get you started.

Species information

Common name
Latin name
Euonymus europaeus
Trees and shrubs
Height: 6-9m
Conservation status