Portugal laurel is a beautiful evergreen shrub with deep dark green leaves.
Key Portugal laurel facts
It bears nice blooms in summer and colored berries in fall and winter.
Ideal for hedges, it is also particularly well-suited to growing in pots or as as a standalone.
Planting Portugal laurel
Portugal laurel, Prunus lusitanica , is planted in fall or in spring as long as it doesn’t freeze.
- Portugal laurel appreciates full sun exposure but still tolerates part shade.
- A blend of soil mix and garden soil is perfectly appropriate.
- In a hedge, provide for enough space between specimens, about 3 feet (1 meter), so that your Prunus lusitanica can grow without suffocating.
- Regularly water over the 1st year after planting.
- Follow our guidelines on planting trees here at Nature-and-Health.
Cuttings in summer are well-suited and usually successful with Portugal laurel, select softwood stems for the cuttings.
Pruning Portugal laurel
It isn’t really necessary to prune, if only to balance the tree if needed after the blooming or at the end of winter.
However, Portugal laurel seems to have been created for the art of topiary and it is very easy to have it grow in any shape you wish.
- Prune in May or June depending on the climate, just before flowering
- Pruning once a year is enough to keep a nice silhouette.
Learn more about Portugal laurel
As its name shows, this laurel is native to Portugal, and is sometimes called the Portugal plum tree.
Prunus lusitanica is part of Prunus genus, section Laurocerasus (like cherry laurel) which itself is part of the Rosaceae family.
It grows in the wild along the Atlantic coast of Portugal and also in the north-west of Africa.
- Portugal laurel is part of the evergreen shrubs group.
It carries evergreen leaves that are a beautiful dark green, and are wavy around the edges which makes for a very ornamental impact.
Its white-colored blooming appears in summer, during the months of May or June depending on the climate and can extend over many long weeks.
Finally, Portugal laurel will bear cute berries which our bird friends will find delectable. They start out looking like little red cherries that afterwards turn to black.
Smart tip about Portugal laurel
To avoid weed growth and retain water needed for its growth, spread mulch at the base of the tree in spring and repeat this every year.