Prunus laurocerasus, Common Cherry Laurel

Cherry Laurel Prunus laurocerasus varieties

Various cultivars are available in the UK:

Prunus laurocerasus 'Novita'
Prunus laurocerasus 'Rotundifolia'
Prunus laurocerasus 'Castlewellan' or 'Marbled White'
Prunus laurocerasus 'Longifolia'
Prunus laurocerasus 'Etna' - red new growth
Prunus laurocerasus 'Batumi Rubies'
Prunus laurocerasus 'Magnoliifolia' syn. Latifolia - largest leaf size, tree form
Prunus laurocerasus 'Mount Vernon'
Prunus laurocerasus 'Nana' - dwarf
Prunus laurocerasus 'Otto Luyken' - semi-dwarf
Prunus laurocerasus 'Schipkaensis' - low growing
Prunus laurocerasus 'Zabeliana' - wide spreading
Prunus laurocerasus 'Caucasica'
Prunus laurocerasus 'Reynvaanii'
Prunus laurocerasus 'Van Nes' - low growing
Prunus laurocerasus 'Genolia' - upright erect growth habit

Marbled white Laurel
Old leaves fade to yellow before they are shed.

More than just a plant for hedging

You may not have thought of growing a Cherry Laurel in your garden but the large shiny leaves and its hardy evergreen nature make it an ideal choice for the UK's unpredictable weather.

Prunus laurocerasus thrives in most any type of situation and is very resilient. One of the most commonly grown Common Laurel or Cherry Laurel in Britain is 'Rotundifolia' which is used to provide hedging. It is however shown off to its best on its own.

Laurel with frost and snow
Cold frost and snow doesn't bother this laurocerasus.

Hardy and evergreen in very cold winters

This should be one of your backbone plants grown in your garden as it provides year round interest. It's tough and there are enough varieties to find one that suits most situations. The leaves remain green throughout winter and have been proven to withstand very low temperatures and long period of cold and damp.

The unusual and distinctive p.laurocerasus 'Marbled White' has marbled white and green variegated leaves as seen in the pictures. The red coloured new growth of 'Etna' is also very distinctive and adds interest.

Pruning Prunus laurocerasus

This is a plant that requires very little care and is ideal for a low maintenance garden or part of an evergreen garden. It requires very little attention and can be pruned to shape for hedging or as a standard which can look effective. Pruning the new growth will encourage new leaf growth and denser foliage. Lifting the foliage by removing the lower branches will create a more exotic look and allow room to underplant.

red orange new growth
Notice the orange-red colouring of the new leaves. It looks like Prunus laurocerasus 'Etna' but can't be sure as I didn't plant this one.
prunus laurocerasus from above
View from above, plant growing strong.
prunus laurocerasus 'Marbled White'
The variegated version 'Marbled White'.
marbled white leaf closeup
Attractive marbling on this close up.