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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Laurus nobilis - Grecian Laurel

The Grecian laurel is from the Mediterranean region and yields "bay" leaves and "laurels" used by the Greeks. Its a slow growing evergreen tree to about 35', usually multi-stemmed with a wide spreading form after its upright youth. Not sure why you would plant it, do you really need that many bay leaves?

Leaves are evergreen, alternate, simple, 2-4" long, narrowly elliptical or lanceolate, entire margins, sharp pointed tip and fragrant. Glossy, dark green as well.

The cultivar 'Saratoga' released by the Saratoga Horticultural Foundation has rounded leaves.

Flowers are borne early spring, in clusters at the ends of last years growth. Plants are males or females.

These are the flower buds.

The trees are often multi-stemmed as seen here. Bark is generally gray and smooth.

Misidentification: The California bay perhaps. Both multi-stemmed generally, both with very fragrant foliage. The Ca bay tree has lighter green leaves, and a fleshy fruit like a small avocado.

Location: 221 Townsend Aptos,
110 Madeline Aptos

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