Common Cherrylaurel, English Laurel
Southeastern Europe, Asia Minor
Wide-spreading dense shrub, sometimes a small tree.
Can be planted in full sun, but grows best in part sun to shade. Moist, well-drained soil; does poorly in wet areas. Tolerates pruning well.
Prunus laurocerasus is an evergreen, wide spreading shrub of dense constitution. The species grows 10-18 feet high and under ideal conditions may grow 25-30 feet wide, but this isn't typical under cultivation. Leaves are alternate, simple, 2 to 6 inches long, oblong or obovate-oblong, with serrate margins, and lustrous medium to dark green. Flowers are white, and strongly fragrant, emerging in April through May. Fruits are black or purple drupes, .33 .5 inches long, emerging in the summer when they are barely seen through the foliage. Prunus laurocerasus makes a handsome hedge or specimen shrub.
Alternate, oblong, slightly serrate, 2 to 6 inches long, leathery, lustrous dark green above, pale green beneath. 2-4 glands present below (along midvein) or above (near base of leaf).
Buds are sessile, round to ovoid shape, generally has six scales.
Green; cherry-like aroma when bruised.
White, strongly fragrant. Large, upright clusters of .24 to .33 inch white blossoms on 2 to 5 inch racemes.
Small, purple-black drupe; concial-round; ripens in summer.
Cuttings taken in late summer. No treatment is necessary, but proper medium (sand:peat) and mist is helpful. If you wish to use rooting hormone try 3000 or 5000 ppm IBA.
Species is rare in cultivation. Compact cultivars are popular landscape specimens.
'Forest Green' - Black-green leaves, 4-6 feet tall.
'Schipkaensis' - Dark green leaves, hardy to Zone 5, 4-5 feet tall.