Cherry Laurels Are Attractive and Reliable Evergreen Shrubs


Cherry Laurel shrubs make excellent additions to just about any landscape.   They are attractive, reliable and useful in many landscape situations.     As landscape designers, we’re always looking for shrubs that answer the bell for reliability and attractiveness and we find that Cherry Laurels often are the perfect shrub to use in many of our designs.

Interesting though, we find homeowners rarely plant these shrubs because they’re not aware of the great characteristics and the shrub itself doesn’t scream ‘buy me’ at the nursery.


What is a Cherry Laurel Shrub?

Cherry Laurel. Photo: Pixabay

Cherry Laurel Shrubs (Prunus laurocerasus) are attractive, upright evergreen shrubs   The 4” long and 1” leaves are very shiny, dark green (almost holly in color).  There are two main varieties: Otto Luyken and Skipkaenis.

The ‘Otto Luyken’ is lower growing, but still dense.   It has a compact habit and matures 4 feet high by 5 feet wide but can be easily maintained and pruned to 3 feet high by 4 feet wide.

The Skipkaenis (Skip Laurel) is more upright and faster growing.  It can grow 7-8 feet tall in a few years and can be fairly dense growing.  It can make a nice, dense evergreen hedge.



A blooming Cherry Laurel. Photo: Pixabay

  1. All varieties do well in full sun or partial shade.  The ‘Otto Luyken’ even does well in deep shade.
  1. They are usually deer resistant (but when deer are desperate, they may nibble on them).
  1. White, beautiful fragrant blooms appear mid-spring.

4. Lots of varieties – take your pick regarding size; also a nice compact shrub.

5. Can be pruned for size if used as a hedge or left alone with its    attractive natural shape.  But don’t prune by sheering uniformly around the edges    because their shape will be too unnatural.  Occasionally remove some of the    interior branches so light and air are not          restricted which will reduce disease and prevent infestations.

6. They attract butterflies and hummingbirds.

7.They don’t like wet, heavy soil and avoid planting in low areas where water might collect.


Why We Love Them

A row of Cherry Laurels in Schwenksville, PA

There are lots of varieties that include large ones and dwarf ones.  They have a compact spreading habit with great color.   They stay green all winter which makes them perfect for a home landscape.  They can be pruned to size and can be planted in the sun but will tolerate shade.


How to Use Them

The more compact shrubs can be used around the foundation of a house or around the deck to hide the open space under a deck.    They look great ‘massed’ and the taller varieties can be used as an evergreen screening hedge along property lines.  They accentuate entryways nicely.  Can even be used in mass as erosion control on slopes and embankments.

Great leaves…great color and great habit….what’s not to love about them!  Do you need help with your landscaping?  Whitehouse Landscaping can help you design the perfect landscape to fit your style and needs.  Ou r landscaping experience can help bring a plan to life that is pleasing to the eye.  Call us at 484-300-4290 or fill out a contact form on our website to see how we can help you with your landscape needs.