ID? Portuguese Laurel?

Discussion in 'Woody Plants' started by WesternWilson, Oct 4, 2007.

  1. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

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    Is this a Portuguese Laurel? I have never seen one presented in this standard like form. It has been planted very close to a sidewalk, and as my recollection of these plants is that they get very big very quickly, I wonder if this is going to turn into a beast?

    Thanks all!

    Janet
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2007
  2. LPN

    LPN Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    It could be, although it's difficult to tell exactly from your photo. The trees are very dense and have dark evergreen foliage. It can be pruned to control size.

    Cheers, LPN.
     
  3. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

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    Here is a close-up of the foliage (sorry if my photo insertions are done wrong...)


    <a href="http://img64.imageshack.us/my.php?image=mysteryfoliagedc4.jpg" target="_blank"><img src="http://img64.imageshack.us/img64/4253/mysteryfoliagedc4.th.jpg" alt="Free Image Hosting at www.ImageShack.us" border="0"/></a>
     
  4. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Without seeing pictures, seems likely - I have seen standards offered here. While large, growth is not fast.
     
  5. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

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    Ooopsie, NOW I see how to do this...sorry all, and here are the photos:
     

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  6. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    Magnolia stellata. We have star magnolia standards on some streets down here (Seattle), at one time this were being grown and sold here by J. Spargaaren, Hollandi Gardens nursery. Apparently somebody up there is also training star magnolias into tree shapes now.
     
  7. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

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    Ahhh...of course. Our neighbour has planted this and now I see why. It will grow up to be about 20' at maturity? And given the standard form it is starting in, will arch up and over the sidewalk. Should look lovely!

    Here is a shot of our shared garden (I have tried, since moving in, when our little portion, which is on the left, was just grass, to harmonize the two beds into a seamless whole). I am still wrestling with plantings and pairings in our entire yard as the beds are all new and our neighbour, who has a brilliant sense of garden design is not very communicative, so I am trying to follow her lead sans advice.

    I planted a lovely purple maple against our retaining wall (blue arrow) to pick up the plum accents we used as our theme. Then later this year I impulsively planted an Arbutus menziesii where the red arrow is. I felt a specimen fit there. It is still quite small and I don't imagine anyone else would notice it is there at this point.

    Then the magnolia standard went in (green arrow)...jeepers....now the future looks a bit crowded!

    What do you all think...pull out and relocate the arbutus when it is dormant?
     

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  8. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    The magnolia will branch out sideways from the level it is at now, on such a short trunk there won't be much difference in the impact it has on the surrounding area between it and one that had not been pruned or trained up a bit. In time the Nootka will be out to the front of the bed, unless you keep it cut back - which will probably be hard to do without altering its appearance in an unpleasant way, the bottom eventually looking like you have a deer problem. Might be best to plant area in front only with subjects that can be moved out of way of cypress later, such as the perennials that are there now, and some easily moved shrubs, like rhododendrons (also a naturalistic associate with conifers) - rather than those that resent transplanting, such as magnolias and Arbutus.
     
  9. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

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    Forgive my ignorance, but what do you mean by the Nootka?

    The magnolia isn't mine...so it stays. I was worried my baby arbutus would eventually crowd into it, but if the magnolia stays fairly compact, that should be alright. Most magnolias grow fairly slowly, right? As do the madronas.

    That weeping cypress...man I hate those things, but again, not mine. They strike me as mournful and depressing.

    That said, I will concentrate on putting in understory type plants from now on. In a few short years, the trees and larger shrubs will dominate and this will no longer be a sort of flower bed. The hydrangea you can just see at the far side will rapidly get massive as well. Can't see that staying comfortably where it is, but that is my neighbour's side of this shared space.
     
  10. Michael F

    Michael F Paragon of Plants Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    Nootka Cypress (the weeping conifer at the left side of the photo).
     
  11. WesternWilson

    WesternWilson Active Member 10 Years

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  12. Ron B

    Ron B Paragon of Plants 10 Years

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    This little spot is being "overplanted", some of these trees and shrubs will have to go at some point. The star magnolia and cypress might merge acceptably later, the evergreen conifer making a contrasting backdrop for the magnolia - or, the comparatively fast-growing and already much larger cypress may eat the slow- and small-growing magnolia (small for a magnolia is 10'-20' instead of triple that or more).

    While star magnolias are on the slow side, as far as it goes magnolias generally are rather vigorous when well-grown, young specimens in particular may shoot up like sunflowers when stimulated to make maximum growth.
     

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