Laurus nobilis (Bay)
Also known as: Laurel
Location: Long cultivated, its aromatic leaves being used as a herb in cooking all sorts of dishes. Makes decorative trees for gardens and patios, commonly grown in tubs and placed at entrances to hotels, restaurants and houses.
The ancient Romans made the leaves into wreaths to crown heroes and poets. Often low and bushy and trimmed like a hedge.
Leaves are dark green, almost leathery and have a strong aroma when broken.
Flowers are on separate trees, opening in June. Males and females. Males and females are both about 0.5cm long, males with clusters of pollen shedding anthers.
Fruit is about 1.2cm long and ripens to black.