Cherry laurel (Prunus laurocerasus) is a strong, fast growing, dense shrub with dark green leathery leaves up to 15cm in length making it ideal for supplying privacy to your garden. They develop racemes flowers (clusters of separate flowers attached by stalks along a central stem) up to 12cm in length, flowering in early April. They are followed by cherry like glossy red fruits. Cherry Laurel is incredibly versatile, capable of growing in full sun, partial shade or full shade; though its growth will not be as strong the less light it gets.
Cherry Laurel (Prunus laurocerasus) has a RHS hardiness rating of H5, meaning it is hardy down to -10 to -15c and once established it is more drought tolerant than most. It originated from south eastern Europe and south west Asia and countries around the Black Sea and was introduced to the UK in 1576. It is capable of growing, if left unchecked up to 30ft high and almost the same again in width and are capable of surviving the most severe of pruning, making for excellent sophisticated hedges. Making them one of the nations favourites. In their native environment they are often seen with Beech (Fagus sylvatica) and Rhododendron.
Cherry laurel’s (Prunus laurocerasus) leathery leaves limit the amount of transpiration when they are exposed to severe winds, thus making them a perfect windbreak, allowing the nature and plants in your garden to thrive. This formal hedge is capable of supplying a smart, sophisticated back drop for beds and borders. The leathery leaves help to rebound noise pollution making an ideal hedge if you have a main road, a noisy neighbour or you yourself do not want to annoy your neighbour.
Cherry Laurel (Prunus laurocerasus) is not fussy about the pH of the soil, and providing they are not sitting in water, they are generally fine. The more sun, the better drained and more nutritious the soil, providing they still get an adequate supply of water the quicker they will grow. However, their cousin the Portuguese Laurel, is slower growing but better suited to shallower chalky soils than the Cherry. Container grown laurels should not be confused with root balls of similar heights. They develop quicker and broader than root balls due to their superior root system.
In regards to pruning, Prunus laurocerasus fall under RHS Pruning group 8. This means it should be done immediately after flowering. It makes an excellent traditional hedge
Cherry Laurel is poisonous to horses so we do not recommend planting it where they may be tempted to eat it.
- 30-60cm a year, condition dependant
- Up to 10m tall
- Up to 4-5m wide
- Not fussy, though avoid places where water sits for long periods of time and incredibly shallow chalk
- Thrives in full sun but can tolerate shade
- RHS pruning group 8. Prune in Winter, Spring or early Summer
- RHS hardiness rating H5, hardy down to -15 to -10C
- Cherry Laurel (Prunus laurocerasus) is poisonous to horses.
More information on Cherry Laurel visit our blogs on:
- Noise reducing hedges-Cherry Laurel
- Cherry Laurel, most popular Prunus of all
- Autumn hedge planting Cherry Laurel
- The History of Cherry Laurel
Buying a hedge
- There are many benefits to buying a hedge, which many people forget. For more information on why to buy a hedge, visit our page on why buy a hedge?
When buying a hedge it is important to know the different forms of hedging. For more information visit our page on Bare root, root ball, potted plants.
When purchasing a hedge it is important that you give it every chance it can to thrive. For more information on planting visit our Planting page.