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Common Name:


Scientific Name:

Prunus caroliniana

Family Name:



Cherry-Laurel is a large evergreen shrub or small tree with dark glossy green leaves. The upright oval to tear-drop shaped crown casts dense shade. Cherry-Laurel is frequently planted as an evergreen screen in East Texas.

Plant Habit or Use:

Shrub, large shrub, tree, small tree


sun, partial sun, shade

Flower Color:

Barely noticeable tiny creamy white

Blooming Period:


Fruit Characteristics:

Poisonous black drupe


15 ft to 20 ft, rarely 35 ft


10 ft to 15 ft

Earth–Kind® Index:

  • Heat Tolerance: High Heat Tolerance
  • Water Requirements: Medium Water Use
  • Soil Requirements: Medium Soil Requirements
  • Pest Tolerance: High Pest Resistance
  • Fertility Requirements: Low Fertility Requirements
Explanation of the Earth–Kind® Index breakdown

Firewise Index

Explanation of the Firewise Index numerical value

USDA Hardiness Zones:

7, 8, 9, 10

Regions that intersect these hardiness zones:
Region A - Panhandle and High Plains Region B - North and Central Texas Region C - Northeast and East Texas Region D - West Texas Region E - Upper Rio Grande Region F - Hill Country and Central Coast Region G - Southeast Texas Region H - Rio Grande Valley
Click image for enlarged map of USDA Hardiness Zones

Additional Comments:

Cherry-Laurel tends to develop chlorosis on high pH soils. Not well adapted to heavy or compacted soils. Snow and ice loads can be damaging. Also occasionally troubled by borers, cotton root rot, white flies, and sapsucker damage on the trunks.
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A Special Note about Cool Season Annuals

Cool season annuals typically are planted in the fall or early winter and flower in early spring under moderate temperatures. This group of plant materials includes: pansies, snapdragons, violas, dianthus, flowering cabbage/kale, etc. Because cool season annuals flower in the spring when conditions are mild, most have limited heat tolerance.

As a result cool season annuals do not receive a high Earth–Kind® index despite their outstanding landscape qualities.