Bay Laurel in Georgia (Zone 7-8)
Answered by: Inge Poot
Question from: Doris Patterson
Posted on: March 11, 2004

I want to try to grow a bay leaf plant (bay laurel I guess). I have never seen one growing around here. I live in Decatur, Georgia, USA. Would it be possible to grow the bay laurel here, and how long does it take a plant to grow to a size large enough to use the leaves?

Decatur is part of Atlanta, Georgia and as such may have a slightly milder climate than the rest of the area. Atlanta is on the edge between Zone 7 and 8, but the warmth escaping the buildings may make it more Zone 8 than 7 in the winter. Bay laurel is winter hardy in zone 8. I would suggest that protecting it with sacking and plastic for the winter may do the trick. Keep it low and in bush form so that you can manage this easily.

Also remember that plants reach their maximum frost hardiness after being undisturbed for 4 years.

You will be able to start harvesting leaves after half a year if you have a two year old plant. We try to ship plants that age since bay laurels do not grow very much for the first two years from seed.

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