About This Plant

The Prunus lusitanica, commonly known as the Portuguese laurel, boasts smooth, reddish-brown bark that gradually matures into a textured surface with age. The bark’s warm hues and changing texture add to the visual appeal of this evergreen shrub. In terms of height, the Portuguese laurel is known for its upright and dense growth habit. Typically, it can reach a height ranging from 10 to 20 feet (3 to 6 meters), forming a well-rounded silhouette.

The Story


The leaves of the Portuguese Laurel, are evergreen and possess a glossy, leathery texture. These leaves are lance-shaped, with serrated edges, and arranged alternately along the stems. The foliage is dark green, providing a lush and dense appearance to the shrub. The leaves exude a pleasant fragrance when crushed, adding to the overall appeal of Portuguese Laurel.


The Portugal laurel produces small, oval-shaped fruits known as drupes. These drupes are typically dark purple to black when ripe and measure about 1 to 2 centimetres in size. Each drupe contains a single seed inside. The fruits of the Portugal laurel are often clustered in pendulous racemes. The tree typically produces fruits in late summer to early fall. While the fruits are technically edible, they are known for being bitter and are not commonly consumed by humans. However, they can attract birds, which play a role in dispersing the seeds.
Home » Attractions » The Arboretum » Features » Portugal Laurel