Laurel Etna is a glossy evergreen hedging plant. It is similar to Cherry Laurel in many ways, but this one is more compact variety, which makes it ideal for areas where common laurel is too vigorous.
The plant produces upright racemes of creamy white flowers which are popular with wildlife. Since it is a slow grower than Cherry Laurel, it only needs to be trimmed once a year, but it will look beautiful all-year round.
Growing Laurel Etna
Laurel Etna grows to a height of 2.5m if left untrimmed, but can easily be kept at 1m to 3 meters, which makes it a great hedging plant for small gardens where other varieties would get too bulky. This evergreen laurel is ideal for hedging as it has a dense growth habit and grows well even in difficult conditions such as coastal soils and shade.
Why you should grow Laurel Etna
Here are few reasons as to why you should consider using Laurel Etna in your hedge:
- Grows into a thick, compact hedge to provide the privacy you seek
- Produce scented, creamy-white flowers in spring that attract wildlife
- Ideal hedging plant for small gardens as it can be easily kept at a height of 1m to 3m
- It has a dense growth habit, making it the perfect choice where density is an important consideration
- It can tolerate difficult growing conditions such as shade and coastal soils
- Creates an excellent noise barrier and windbreak
- It requires little maintenance. You only need to prune it once a year; otherwise, it can be left on its own
- The plant can tolerate pollution, which makes it ideal for growing in a garden located near the road or industry
- Ideal plant for areas where common laurel is too bulky
- Looks great when planted alone
Where to plant
Laurel Etna grows well in full sun or shade, but sun will help in bringing out the warm-orange colored foliage. The hedging plant appreciates well-drained soil, but not shallow chalk. It will tolerate pollution and dry soils. The leaves and stems of this plant are poisonous to livestock, so you will want to make sure that you don’t plant it near grazing fields.
How to plant
If you want to create a compact hedge within a reasonable period of time, it is important that you plant Laurel Etna properly. Follow these simple steps:
- Give the plant and its clod a thorough soak
- Prepare the planting area by removing grass, weed and other debris
- Dig a trench twice the width and the same height as clod
- Dig some compost into the base of the trench. You could as well mix a small portion of the soil from the trench with manure.
- Position the plant in the trench and ensure that the top of the clod is at the same level as the ground surface. If not, you will have to do some adjustments to make up for this.
- Refill the trench with the mixture of compost and garden soil first, followed by ordinary soil. Firm the soil around the plant with your feet or arm
- Water the plant thoroughly and keep it well-watered through the first growing season
- Don’t grow the plant in shallow chalk soil
- Stem and leaves are poisonous
- Don’t burn leaves
- Don’t plant near fields where livestock graze
Laurel Etna has an average growth rate and can achieve a growth rate of 20 to 40cm per year. It is recommended that you grow two to three plants per meter for a thick hedge.
Care and Advice
As we mentioned, Laurel Etna has a slower growth rate than common laurel, so you will only want to trim once a year to keep the hedge in shape. Hard pruning is not necessary. Use lopper pruners to cut individual branches at specific length. Also remove dead branches and leaves.
To support growth, it is recommended that you feed with a general-purpose fertilizer during the growing season. Make sure that you follow the instructions on the fertilizer’s label to ensure that you are applying it correctly.
You need to grow Laurel Etna in well-drained soil and water the plant slowly and deeply during the first growing season. Check regularly to ensure that soil around the roots is moist, especially when you have grown the plant in dry soil. You will also want to apply mulch to prevent water loss during dry or sunny weather.
Keep grass and other weeds away from young Laurel Etna plants. Apply a thin layer of mulch around the plant to control weed and grass. You should however make sure that the mulch is 10cm away from the trunk of the plant to prevent rotting.
- Great windbreak, privacy screen and noise barrier
- Requires little maintenance
- Produces scented flowers which attract wildlife
- It can tolerate difficult growing conditions
- Ideal for small gardens
- It can be easily maintained at heights of 1m to 3m
- It can grow in polluted areas
- The plant is ideal for sites where common laurel is bulky
- The warm-orange foliage contrasts well with the deep green older leaves
Should I buy Laurel Etna for hedging?
Laurel Etna is an excellent hedging plant that can be grown in difficult growing conditions. The plant can achieve a growth rate of 20-40cm per year which is reasonable. You only need to prune this plant once a year to keep it a shape. This is mainly because it doesn’t grow as fast as common laurel.
It has a dense growth habit, which is ideal for providing just the right amount of privacy. The scented flowers attract wildlife, not to forget the fact that it remains smart all-year round. This is the ideal plant for nearly every garden, but it is recommended not to grow it near livestock grazing fields.
If you are looking for a hedging that will maintain its evergreen color throughout the year and is less demanding with regards to growing conditions and maintenance, then you will want to choose Laurel Etna. For high quality Laurel Etna plants and expert advice, feel free to contact us.