bay laurel, bay tree, sweet bay, true laurel
Evergreen broadly conical tree or large shrub from the Mediterranean region. Glossy, leathery leaves, highly aromatic when crushed and useful in cooking. Small, star-shaped yellowish flowers in spring, followed on female plants by green egg-shaped fruits that ripen to purplish black in autumn.
Prefers a sunny or part-shady position in well-drained soil. Leaves are darker green when grown in the shade. Remove any suckers that may be formed at the base of the plant. Hardy to -12oC.
Laurus nobilis lends itself perfectly for clipping and shaping. It is a popular hedge and topiary plant. You can create your own topiary specimen by selecting a plant with a good, straight central leader (as opposed to a bushy plant that has its tip removed to encourage branching). Gradually remove side branches that are forming too low on the main stem, untill the plant has reached the height from which you wish the canopy to be formed. Now allow the side branches to grow, and, once or twice a year, trim the canopy to a ball-shape or any other shape that takes your fancy.
Type of plantTree - Evergreen Shrub - Evergreen
Sizewithout pruning to 12 m tall, can be maintained to 1.5 m tall with pruning
Landscape Usehedge, container plant, topiary, specimen, culinary, coastal gardens
- Temperature: Hardy
- Light: Medium High
- Moisture: Medium
- Soil: Light Medium Heavy
- Wind tolerance: Average
- Coastal tolerance: High