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Commonly known as Poet's laurel, Sweet bay, True laurel
- Mature Size
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- Goes Well With
- Planting Combinations
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Evergreen - narrowly ovate, glossy, dark-green leaves to 10cm (4in) long.
Yellow - greenish-yellow
Height - 12m (39ft)
Spread - 10m (33ft)
Tree - or large shrub. Produces flowers 5mm (¼in) across followed by black berries.
Hardy - average winter - Hardy through most of the UK apart from inland valleys, at altitude and central/northerly locations. May suffer foliage damage and stem dieback in harsh winters in cold gardens. Plant can withstand temperatures down to -10°C (14°F)
May cause skin allergy or irritant - Having skin or eye contact with these plants could result in an allergic reaction, burning or rash.
Additional Features - Good to know - - the laurel wreath of ancient Greece. Wildlife plant - nectar and pollen for insects.
Medicinal properties - many medicinal uses including as a digestive aid, for reducing flatulence and the berries have even been used to(supposedly) cure baldness
Pests & Diseases - scale insects, tortrix moth caterpillars, powdery mildew, leaf spot.
Place of origin - Mediterranean.
Garden Location/Conditions - Coastal / windswept - - slightly back from the sea with more shelter
Hardiness - Frost hardy (down to -5) -
Pruning group - Pruning group 1
Suitable for: Deciduous and evergreen trees, and some deciduous shrubs.
Pruning: Minimal pruning required. Prune wayward or crossing branches to maintain a healthy framework.
When: When dormant in the late winter/early spring. Some in the summer/autumn to prevent bleeding of sap.
RHS group 1
Scented Plants - Scented foliage - - aromatic foliage.
Soil Conditions - Fertile moist well-drained soil - - shelter from cold winds
Tree Shape - Broadly conical -
Wildlife - Bee friendly -
- How to plant a tree - Video Tip ondemand_video
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- Restaking fallen young tree - Video Tip ondemand_video
- Fallen old tree - Video Tip ondemand_video
- Spring pruning - Video Tip ondemand_video
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- Removing shoots below graft - Video Tip ondemand_video
- Removing peeling bark - Video Tip ondemand_video
- Maintaining variegation - Video Tip ondemand_video