Use this plant to create an attractive flowering hedge, or alone as an ornamental specimen.  Whole bay leaves have a long shelf life of about one year, under normal temperature and humidity. The chemical compound lauroside B has been isolated from Laurus nobilis. Ground bay leaves, however, can be ingested safely and are often used in soups and stocks, as well as being a common addition to a Bloody Mary. , In herbal medicine, aqueous extracts of bay laurel have been used as an astringent and salve for open wounds.  One reason for this belief is because laurel does not burn easily and crackles loudly when on fire. The clusters become pendulous under the weight of the fruits, which are a popular food for birds but should not be consumed by humans. It is also commonly known as the calico bush and is the state flower of both Connecticut and Pennsylvania. Cultivars and Varieties: Aucuba japonica ‘Picturata’, Aucuba japonica ‘Crotonifolia’, Aucuba japonica ‘Golden King’. True laurel (Laurus nobilis) is a common garden plant introduced from the Mediterranean throughout the lower 48 states, valued for its appearance and culinary uses.You will recognize it as an aromatic evergreen tree or large shrub, bearing glossy green leaves. This article was most recently revised and updated by, https://www.britannica.com/plant/laurel-plant-Laurus-genus, laurel - Children's Encyclopedia (Ages 8-11), laurel - Student Encyclopedia (Ages 11 and up). It thrives in well-draining soils that are kept consistently moist and should be positioned in full sun or partial shade. However it is slow-growing and may take several years to reach the desired height. It can be grown as a shrub or a small tree. ", Laurel was closely associated with the Roman Emperors, beginning with Augustus. In the myth of Apollo and Daphne, the god Apollo fell in love with Daphne, a priestess of Gaia (Mother Earth), and when he tried to seduce her she pled for help to Gaia, who transported her to Crete. Most of the last remaining laurel forests around the Mediterranean are believed to have disappeared approximately ten thousand years ago, although some remnants still persist in the mountains of southern Turkey, northern Syria, southern Spain, north-central Portugal, northern Morocco, the Canary Islands and in Madeira.
It grows 25 inches or more per year. Laurus nobilis is an aromatic evergreen tree or large shrub with green, glabrous smooth leaves, in the flowering plant family Lauraceae. Two Laurel trees flanked the entrance to Augustus' house on the Palatine Hill in Rome, which itself was connected to the Temple of Apollo Palatinus which Augustus had built. Other tips to consider before selecting the fragrant tree as potential border plant include: You have many choices of the type of laurel tree you grow. It hails from Iran through to eastern Europe, including countries such as Bulgaria and Albania. Chris Evans, River to River CWMA, Bugwood.org. However, it can be a homeowner's nightmare if he doesn't have time to prune the tree on a regular basis. Avoid excessive fertilization. Ground bay leaves, however, can be ingested safely and are often used in soups and stocks, as well as being a common addition to a Bloody Mary. Learn more. The spread is 6 to 10 feet. Mature Height/Spread: This evergreen, broadleaf shrub can grow to 20 feet but is generally kept smaller in the home landscape. It led ancient Romans to believe the plant was inhabited by a "heavenly fire demon", and was therefore "immune" from outer threats like fire or lightning. These have a beautifully ornate quality and were popularly used by Native Americans to make necklaces. Pliny the Elder stated that the Laurel was not permitted for "profane" uses – lighting it on fire at altars "for the propitiation of divinities" was strictly forbidden, because "...it is very evident that the laurel protests against such usage by crackling as it does in the fire, thus, in a manner, giving expression to its abhorrence of such treatment.
The flowers of this shrub are round and can vary from pale whitish-pink through to dark pink depending on the variety, though most commonly, the blooms are seen in light to medium pink. Growth Rate: Cherry laurel is a fast-growing plant.  Some accounts starting in the fourth century BC describe her as shaking a laurel branch while delivering her prophecies.  The fruit is a small, shiny black berry-like drupe about 1 cm (0.39 in) long that contains one seed. The tree's popularity in the United States was affected in the late 1990s when it was found invading urban parks and forests in and around Seattle, Washington. It belongs to the same family as flowering cherry, peach and apricot trees. The blooms give way to red berries that develop to dark purple as they mature. For the greyhound race, see, CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (. hixa.
The flowers are bright yellow, blooming in dense clusters during spring. Encyclopaedia Britannica's editors oversee subject areas in which they have extensive knowledge, whether from years of experience gained by working on that content or via study for an advanced degree.... Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. The plant is the source of bay leaf (q.v. This versatile tree can be used in landscaping for a border, hedge or ornamental foliage. After the Sui and Tang dynasties, this was sometimes connected to a woodsman named Wu Gang, sentenced to cut at a self-repairing tree as a punishment for varying offenses. The genus Laurus includes four accepted species, whose diagnostic key characters often overlap. The cherry laurels of the genus Prunus will be discussed in detail. The flowers are followed by vibrant red glossy berries, which ripen to a shade of dark purple by fall. According to the poet Lucian, the priestess of Apollo known as the Pythia reputedly chewed laurel leaves from a sacred tree growing inside the temple to induce the enthusiasmos (trance) from which she uttered the oracular prophecies for which she was famous. The tree was originally identified as a 桂 (guì) and described in the terms of the osmanthus (Osmanthus fragrans, now known in Chinese as the 桂花 or "gui flower"), whose blossoms are still used to flavor wine and confections for the Mid-Autumn Festival. , Laurus nobilis is widely cultivated as an ornamental plant in regions with Mediterranean or oceanic climates, and as a house plant or greenhouse plant in colder regions. It is resistant to heat, drought, and wind, and will grow well in full sun or partial shade. This is an evergreen plant that is native to North America, found along coastal woodlands through California and into Oregon.
In addition, the English Laurel grows best in slightly acidic soil that is watered regularly.  The Roman naturalist Pliny the Elder listed a variety of conditions which laurel oil was supposed to treat: paralysis, spasms, sciatica, bruises, headaches, catarrhs, ear infections, and rheumatism.. The fruit contains up to 30% fatty oils and about 1% essential oils (terpenes, sesquiterpenes, alcohols, and ketones).
Pictures of Different Types of Palm Trees.
In ancient Greece, the plant was called daphne, after the mythic mountain nymph of the same name.  Other versions of the myth, including that of the Roman poet Ovid, state that Daphne was transformed directly into a laurel tree.  Together with a gold form, L. nobilis 'Aurea'  and a willow-leaved form L. nobilis f. angustifolia, it has gained the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit. This evergreen plant is native to Texas, New Mexico, and Mexico. © 2006-2020 LoveToKnow, Corp., except where otherwise noted. English Laurel, often referred to as Cherry Laurel, is a large evergreen shrub or small tree.
L. extracts on rats", https://giftsitter.com/it/blog/laurea-perche-si-incorona-il-laureato-con-lalloro, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Laurus_nobilis&oldid=981622380, CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown, Articles containing Chinese-language text, Articles with Chinese-language sources (zh), Articles with unsourced statements from July 2019, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 3 October 2020, at 13:16. They blossom in abundant clusters during May and June, putting on an attention-grabbing display for several weeks. This plant works well as a privacy screen due to its dense growth habit. The most abundant component found in laurel essential oil is 1,8-cineole, also called eucalyptol. It tolerates shade, but some exposure to sun is required for proper flower color development of red and pink cultivars. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Join our mailing list to receive the latest updates from HGIC. The small and inconspicuous flowers are yellowish or greenish white. The shrub grows 5 to 6 feet in height and is more tolerant of full sun than the species. The undersides of the foliage are sometimes flushed with tan. Bay trees are susceptible to white wax scale, which makes the leaves sooty and retards leaf growth.
Small, white flowers in 5- to 10-inch spikes appear in spring and early summer, followed by clusters of tiny, red to dark purple fruit. 8 Types of Laurel Flowers (Care Guides & Photos), 11 Fast Growing Trees - Growing Tips + Photos, Thuja Green Giant - Growing and Care Guide, Guide to Growing and Caring for Dogwood Trees, 8 Dwarf Shrubs For Small Gardens & Spaces, 7 Best Plants For Hedges (Pictures & Growing Information), 16 Different Types of Holly Bushes and Trees, Red Tip Photinia Plants - Our Best Tips to Grow and Care For Fraser's photinia, 13 Types of Rhododendrons (Photos & Details). This is an evergreen plant, which, despite its name, is not native to England.  Rome's second Emperor Tiberius wore wreaths of laurel whenever there was stormy weather because it was widely believed that Laurel trees were immune to lightning strikes, affording protection to those who brandished it. This is a large evergreen shrub or small tree that is native to Portugal, Spain, Morocco, and France. In ancient Greece, the plant was called daphne, after the mythic mountain nymph of the same name. Bay leaves can be harvested and dried throughout the year. An early Chinese etiological myth for the phases of the moon involved a great forest or tree which quickly grew and lost its leaves and flowers every month. If this document didn’t answer your questions, please contact HGIC at email@example.com or 1-888-656-9988. The English Laurel is native to southwestern Asia and southeastern Europe; however, over time the tree has expanded to North America and other parts of the world, including Iran. Mountain laurel requires an acid, well-aerated soil.  Other versions of the myth, including that of the Roman poet Ovid, state that Daphne was transformed directly into a laurel tree. Often it is used as a clipped hedge or tall screen to 20 feet high. The glossy, dark green leaves are 5 inches long by 2 inches wide.  A folk remedy for rashes caused by poison ivy, poison oak, and stinging nettle is a poultice soaked in boiled bay leaves.
However it is slow-growing and may take several years to reach the desired height.
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