Prunus caroliniana (Cherry Laurel)

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Also known as Carolina Cherry Laurel.

Cherry Laurel is a handsome, evergreen shrub or small tree featuring dark, glossy green leaves. It features white flowers in the spring, followed by berries that are consumed by various birds, particularly American Robins and Cedar Waxwings.

It does best in moist, well-drained soils, although it is somewhat adaptable and can be relatively drought-tolerant. It does not like hot, dry locations and does best in deep soil and even moisture with good drainage. Prolonged saturation can cause root rot, particularly in clay soils. Shallow, nutrient-poor, rocky soils can cause chlorosis and heat stress. Cherry Laurel does not do well when severely pruned.

Cherry Laurel is a host plant to various butterfly species, such as Coral Hairstreak, Eastern Tiger Swallowtail and Viceroy, its flower attracts pollinators and its fruit is eaten by various birds.



Texas native Yes
Water use Medium
Sun exposure Sun to part shade
Bloom color White
Bloom time Spring
Mature height 15-40 ft
Evergreen Yes
Attracts Butterflies, bees, birds
Host plant Coral Hairstreak, Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, Viceroy butterflies.
All Prunus species contain hydrocyanic acid and should never be eaten. Leaves of Prunus caroliniana are particularly high in this toxin.
Notes Native bee friendly.





 Present in state
 Present in county and native
 Native to North America, but adventive & escaped in state         
 Not present in state
 Present and rare, native in county
 Previously present, now extinct
 Questionable presence (cross-hatched, regardless of color)