Question: Lauro ceraso
Dear Editor, before the great winter cold (even -14 degrees) I planted a dozen plants of cherry laurel fertilizing with manure in a small garden, the plants now that we are close to spring have some leaves yellowed at the ends and with temptation Do I have to worry? It could be very cold or wrong watering or some other cause.
Answer: Lauro ceraso
Hello Stefano and thank you for writing in the expert's answer column of our website. In cold winters like the one just passed, it is normal in early spring to find dry leaves or plants in less than optimal conditions. Cherry Laurel is an evergreen plant ideal for creating hedges as it has an excellent shielding effect.
Like other evergreen plants, the cherry laurel continues its vegetative activity, albeit very reduced, even in winter and that is why we must remember to water the laurel trees grown in pots from time to time.
However, if there are not many dry leaves, there is no need to worry as they are physiological nuisances of the plant: even evergreen plants lose part of their leaves in winter. If nothing worse than a few frost has happened, in a few months your Cherry Laurel will be as beautiful as prime.
Cherry laurel hedgeAmong the most used evergreen hedges we also find those of cherry laurel. These hedges are tall, dense and with beautiful glossy green foliage. Their aesthetic performance is due to the shrub with which they are r ...
Vigorously growing plants and shrubs, such as Cherry Laurel, can grow so much that they are no longer suitable for the reserved space in the garden. Fortunately, however, it is possible to prune them vigorously to contain their growth.
March is the best time to prune with decision an old Cherry Laurel that has become woody and / or too big. After pruning it will resume growing beautifully. Later, by shortening it regularly, you can maintain the desired shape and height.
Prune the Cherry Laurel back above the ground. To determine what is the right height for pruning, just look at where the main branches branch. These branches should not be pruned: the more there are, the more compact the shrub will grow. Then cut up above the part where the branches divide. New shoots will develop from dormant buds.
The Prunus Laurocerasus Caucasica, more commonly known as Lauro or Lauroceraso is an evergreen shrub, erect, well branched and thick, native to the Caucasus. It is used in gardens throughout Italy, for ornamental purposes, for the creation of elegant hedges or dense and compact barriers.
It is characterized by oval-elongated leathery leaves (up to 15-18 cm), bright green above, clear and opaque below, with slightly indented edges. It produces white flowers gathered in clusters in April-May and subsequently round fruits, first red, then glossy black. The flowers are white, small, gathered in racemes, slightly perfumed. If kept well pruned close to a hedge, flowering is never showy or may be absent.
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Cultivation of Cherry Laurel
The cherry laurel requires a position that is bright and exposed to direct sunlight. In semi-shady places it tends to develop only in height, it cannot produce flowers nor berries. It resists the sultry heat of summer, tolerates even low temperatures well.
It is a very cold-resistant shrub and also adapts to very low temperatures typical of mid-winter. In areas with a very harsh climate, it is advisable to protect the feet of the plants with a light layer of mulch which will be removed when the first warmth of spring arrives.
It is a plant that adapts to any type of soil, even the slightly alkaline or calcareous one, but grows strong and luxuriant in acidic, humid, rich in organic matter and well-drained soils. In soil with pH values greater than or equal to 7, the cherry laurel may show chlorosis of the foliage. The humidity of the substrate must also be constant, soils with stagnant water and with little skeleton should be avoided.
Cherry laurel is a plant that is generally satisfied with rainwater but requires weekly watering in periods of great heat and prolonged drought. Plants grown in pots require moist soil and watering must be done more frequently.
At the end of winter, add a slow release granular fertilizer rich in nitrogen (N) and potassium (K) to the foot of the Cherry Laurel plants to stimulate the vegetative restart. Then fertilize every 3 - 4 months.
PSILLA DEL LAUROCERASO: HOW TO INTERVENE
The infestation by Psylla it is easily recognized by the presence of small yellow eggs and the parasite on the leaves and shoots, accompanied by one honeydew sticky.
In the fall, the adults hide in the bark of the trees until they come out again in the spring to lay their eggs which will hatch in May / June. And it is precisely in this period that the problem generally arises, with an addictive presence of sticky secretions dripping from the leaves.
To avoid the attack of the Psylla it is advisable to prune the infested parts and intervene with a multipurpose pesticide. While there are several natural antagonists in nature, it is not always advisable to let it go. A timely intervention, in fact, can quickly restore the health of the plant, avoiding the arrival of fungal diseases caused by weakening.
Before proceeding with the pesticide treatment, it is important to wash the affected parts of the plant thoroughly, with the aim of eliminating the honeydew from the leaves, which has a protective action for young specimens.
Let's talk about costs
There are indeed many species of laurel. But the beauty of this plant is that it guarantees, in all its varieties, hedges that are pleasant to look at and useful for our privacy. The prices of a laurel hedge they are reasonable and included in the 200 euros for a 10 meter long facade. In fact, 3 plants are needed for each meter and the unit cost is around 5 euros. The cost of pruning of a laurel hedge, on the other hand, depends on the time and the tools used (shears or power tools). Generally, professionals tend to set an hourly rate for their work, around 25 euros, which increases if the waste material also needs to be disposed of.
An even more beautiful hedge in late spring
The cherry laurel also produces flowers and berries. The former are white in color and appear around the end of May. These little flowers are very delicate and come together in a spike shape. Even if their presence refines the hedge, there are those who find their scent annoying and cloying. The berries, on the other hand, are dark colored balls (like small black olives) and potentially toxic.
Laurel hedges are not all the same
A laurel hedge can come in many versions with different small details. There is, in fact, the Etna cherry laurel whose young leaves are red or Herbergii, with leaves with a more elongated shape than normal and a decisive and bright green. There is also the cherry laurel Otto Luyken which blooms twice a year.
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Potted or garden cherry laurel hedge
Potted or garden cherry laurel hedge: diseases, pruning, care and instructions on how to grow a Prunus laurocerasus hedge in a pot or in the garden.
Together with the boxwood, the cherry laurel hedge it is among the most widespread in Italy and most suitable for growing hedges in pots.
Prunus laurocerasus or Laurus nobilis: differences between cherry laurel and laurel
This shrub is commonly known as cherry laurel. For the less experienced, we will indicate the differences between the cherry laurel and laurel because they are two completely different plants that have the shape of the leaves in common.
Laurel is the species Laurus nobilis while the cherry laurel is the botanical species Prunus laurocerasus. The scientific name Prunus laurocerasus refers to laurus (laurel) and cerasus (cherry), due to the similarity of the leaves to those of the laurel. Laurel can thrive up to over 15 meters in height, while cherry laurel generally stops growing at around 7 - 8 meters but only in ideal conditions. If you are looking for a tall hedge, you can consider a cypress hedge.
While the laurel is part of the family of lauraceae, the cherry laurel it is part of the Rosaceae family.
The cherry laurel it is therefore a shrub or small tree which, due to its resistance to pruning and its posture, is widely used for cultivation of evergreen hedges.
Potted cherry laurel hedge
Which of the two hedges is better to grow in pots, boxwood or cherry laurel? It depends on the attention you want to devote to the hedge and your expectations.
If you are willing to spend a little more, focus on the boxwood hedge which, in pots, you can buy the size you already want. Potted boxwood grows very slowly while the cherry laurel hedge it is the fastest growing.
A potted cherry laurel hedge will go repotted every 3 to 5 years (if larger containers are used immediately). A potted boxwood hedge can survive without repotting for up to 8 years.
The fastest growing of the cherry laurel it will also require more interventions than pruning. For the care to be dedicated to the potted cherry laurel hedge I refer you to the next paragraph. For growing in pots, all you have to do is pay more attention to irrigation (which must be more frequent) and fertilization (slow release fertilizers for green plants are suitable).
Cherry laurel hedge in the garden
Where can a cherry laurel hedge be grown?
The cherry laurel it prefers sunny areas, however it thrives well even in partial shade. In the north, better if planted in a sheltered position: the plant is not resistant to cold.
Temperatures below 10 ° C, in fact, can damage the foliage and cause burns to the outermost vegetation. In this case, the parts damaged by the cold will have to be removed with an intervention of pruning to be carried out at the end of winter.
With the pruning the cherry laurel hedge performed at the end of winter, it stimulates the development of new vegetation.
Secondly, the pruning it will be repeated only after flowering or when the plant begins to develop branches that project out of its original shape.
Cherry laurel hedge, diseases
Cherry laurel is a relatively hardy hedge. Between illnesses most common that can attack the cherry laurel we point out the powdery mildew or bad white. It is a fungal disease that occurs by covering the leaves, buds and buds of the plant with a white substance, often described as "white mold". Powdery mildew on the cherry laurel hedge it generally appears in spring, when the weather is very humid (lots of rainfall). If left untreated, the white disease can remain on the plant until autumn, cease in winter and reappear in spring if the climatic conditions are favorable to the fungus.
To prevent the formation of this fungal disease, it is important that the plant gets proper watering. The plant will only need to be watered from March to September, but only when the plant is grown in pots. In the open field, the plant tends to settle for rainfall, requiring scarce irrigation only in the summer months.
Published by Anna De Simone on 9 September 2017