Growing Bay Laurel in containers and beyond

I never thought about growing Bay in containers - it is sort of an herb we take for granted in the South. But, Stark Brothers sent an email saying they have it for sale. That led me to read some very interesting articles online. Thought y'all might enjoy them, too!


  • ieducate2008
    ieducate2008 Posts: 40 ✭✭✭

    I have a huge bay laurel plant in my yard. I planted it 15 years ago. I enjoy the fact that, when a recipe calls for bay leaf, I can just go outside and pick a few.

  • chimboodle04
    chimboodle04 Posts: 286 ✭✭✭

    Thanks for sharing :) I tried once to grow it and after a year it just up and died for no apparent reason...??? I just bought a larger one at our local garden center that I found to try again - I will be reading through these tonight to make sure this one makes it!

  • seeker.nancy - Central Texas
    seeker.nancy - Central Texas Posts: 795 ✭✭✭✭

    I've not yet had success but it is supposed to do very well here in the ground so maybe next year I can give it a shot. Thanks for all the info links @judsoncarroll4!

  • Torey
    Torey Posts: 5,502 admin

    Thanks for posting these links @judsoncarroll4. I have tired to grow bay a couple of times as a house plant. Once it died like @chimboodle04 for no apparent reason and one got scale bugs so bad that I could never get rid of them and finally I burned it. But this might help. I would love to have one as a house plant. No way I can grow one outside here.

  • valizona
    valizona Posts: 48 ✭✭✭

    Bay laurel is a fantastic plant to grow. I realize folks reading this are from all over but if you're in a milder climate you could plant right in the ground. Often found as a central and/or topiary in herb gardens. In a container it can be grown in significantly more regions. I'd suggest putting planter on wheeled base to as to move easily to protect when necessary. For those permaculture food forest folks, one could make a micro climate area in which to plant it directly in the ground. Plants want to be in soil. Another advantage of planters, though, is that it will stifle the maximum growth of this tree making it somewhat more manageable over time.

  • Melissa Swartz
    Melissa Swartz Posts: 270 ✭✭✭

    I've had a bay laurel in a container for probably ten years. I have to move it inside during the winter. It really is a great container plant, in my experience. It likes a good amount of water in the winter, and needs to be put in shade when it first moves outside in the spring, before moving into more consistent sun.

  • Ferg
    Ferg Posts: 285 ✭✭✭

    I've just gotten my first bay plant to try container growing. I fantasize about having a pretty globe in a pot - I saw this at some monestary / cloister garden in Germany and thought, well. I can do that. I don't know why it took me so long, I bonsai everything I can get my hands on. So this year I'm trying bay, and working getting a Mexican Oregano (*Lippia graveolens*) into a bonsai shrub, and trying to see what will happen with my caper plant (new to me this year as well). It's really fun to try this. I'll be happy if I can keep everybody alive over the winter (can't leave them out here as I'm in the mountains and it does freeze).

  • Sheila
    Sheila Posts: 106 ✭✭✭

    I had a bay laurel I grew from seed for about 15 years. When we relocated to a different climate and area and it got scale so bad the underside of the leaves were white. I tried everything I could to save that sucker but finally the scale won and it passed to the great compost heap in the sky. I really miss that plant - was almost 6' dia. - loved being able to pull leaves off and use immediately or I would dry the leaves from the pruning and use the wood in our BBQ.