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Plant Information

Common Name: BAY LAUREL
Scientific Name: Laurus nobilis
Alternative Names: Bay, Sweet Bay, Lourierblaar (Afr.)

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Laurus nobilis
Laurus nobilis


  • Perennial
  • Bay Laurel is native to the Mediterranean.
  • It is a dense evergreen shrub or small tree with leathery pointed leaves.
  • Clusters of small cream cream-yellow flowers (male and female flowers on seperate plants) appear in spring followed by dark purple berries.
  • It needs well-drained soil in sun or partial shade and is hardy and draught resistant.
  • Trim to shape in summer .
  • Propagation can be done by semi-ripe cuttings and the removal of suckers in summer or by layering in autumn.

Culinary Uses

  • Popular spice in classic sauces, cuisines, seafood,
  • poultry, meat, rice, soups, casseroles, marinades,
  • vegetables, pickled food and sweet dishes like custard and creams.

Parts Used

  • The leaves and branches are collected in summer and dried whole.
  • The dried leaves loose their flavor after about one year.

Medicinal Uses. It is said that

  • Ancient aromatic and antiseptic plant
  • Treat upper digestive tract disorders
  • Stimulates secretion of digestive juices.
  • Promotes digestion and absorption of food.
  • Assist breakdown of heavy food
  • Rub baylaurel oil onto rheumatic/ sprained limbs and bruised skin.
  • Pulp and apply as an astringent to burns and bruises
  • Infusion - ease aching limbs

Other Uses

  • Storage:
  • A leaf in a jar of flour or rice will deter weevils.
  • Pick leaves and dry them slowly away from direct sunlight.
  • Store in a jar away from strong light.
  • To keep them flat - dry the leaves between 2 sheets of paper.
The information contained within this website is for educational purposes only. This site merely recounts the traditional uses of specific plants as recorded through history. Always seek advice from a medical practitioner.

Mountain Herb Estate, and its representatives will not be held responsible for the improper use of any plants or documentation provided. By use of this site and the information contained herein you agree to hold harmless Mountain Herb Estate, its affiliates and staff

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