Caring For Cherry Laurel

The care information provided in this section represents the kind of practical advice is available for all the plants in this web site if you subscribe to the monthly customized newsletter Yardener’s Advisor.

Shrubs and young trees do not usually need watering except when they are first planted, when there is a drought, and in the late fall before the ground freezes for the winter. Well established older shrubs need watering only in severe drought. During times when rainfall is scarce, run drip irrigation or a hose every week or 10 days for 30 minutes or so each time. Soak the ground under each cherry laurel down 10 to 12 inches. A layer of organic mulch on the soil over the root system will slow water evaporation from the soil. For more information see the file About Watering Equipment

Naturally vigorous growers, cherry laurels need feeding only once a year. In the fall sprinkle a handful or two of granular general purpose fertilizer on the soil under each shrub out as far as the branches reach (the drip line) for the rain to soak in. For more information see the file About Fertilizers

A 2 to 3 inch layer of some attractive organic material spread on the soil over the roots of cherry laurel shrubs helps protect them. It retains soil moisture, discourages weeds and protects the plants from injury by mechanical yard care equipment. Use wood chips, chopped leaves (not whole), shredded bark or pine needles either alone or over landscape fabric laid down first.
For more information see file on Using Mulch.

Cherrylaurels benefit from pruning. Their vigorous growth demands restraint, especially shrubs planted as hedges. They respond well to shearing. It is also important to prune away the occasional dead or diseased branch. Shrubs that have been neglected and are wildly overgrown can be pruned back to nearly ground level and they will rejuvenate. Do this in late winter or early spring. Shrubs pruned this severely will not flower the following season.
For more information see file on Pruning Shrubs and Choosing Pruning Tools.

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