Sometimes found as a sturdy shrub, but more often grown as a small tree. At first the crown has an ascending manner of growth but finally becomes irregular, more or less rounded. Up to 5 m broad. The crown looks heavy because of its denseness and the dark leaves. The leaves are glossy dark green and feel leathery. Reddish-green leaves appear on the spring shoots. The branches bear numerous large thorns, length approx. 4 cm. The white flowers emerge from pink buds in the spring. They are followed by an abundance of dull orange drupes that remain on the tree until winter. They are approximately 2 cm in diameter. The tree has a deep spreading root system. Stands up well to dry soils and atmospheric pollution.