Laurus nobilis L.

Bay Laurel

Sp. Pl. 1: 369 (1753) APNI

Taxonomic status:Accepted

Occurrence status:Present

Establishment means:Sparingly established

Small dioecious tree to 12 m high; bark blackish brown; branchlets puberulent. Leaves alternate, aromatic when crushed; petiole c. 1 cm long; leaf blade oblong or oblong-lanceolate, 5–12 cm long, 18–32 mm wide, glabrous, upper surface slightly darker than lower; apex acute or acuminate; base cuneate; margins entire, sometimes undulate. Inflorescence globose; involucral bracts suborbicular, outer surface glabrous. Perianth segments 4, broadly obovate to suborbicular; male flowers with c. 12 stamens in 3 whorls, the inner 2 whorls with glands, the outer whorl eglandular; female flowers with c. 4 staminodes. Fruit ovoid, dark purple.

*Gold, *HSF, *VVP. Native to the Mediterranean region, commonly cultivated, an occasional garden escape, with collections from Ivanhoe, Dandenong Ranges, and Gembrook.

Leaves of Laurus nobilis (Bay Laurel) are commonly used as a spice.

Created by: Andre Messina, 2015-01-27
Updated by: Val Stajsic, 2019-03-27
Hero image
Distribution map
life Life
kingdom Plantae
phylum Tracheophyta
superorder Magnolianae
order Laurales
family Lauraceae
genus Laurus
Higher taxa


Source: AVH (2014). Australia's Virtual Herbarium, Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria, <>. Find Laurus nobilis in AVH ; Victorian Biodiversity Atlas, © The State of Victoria, Department of Environment and Primary Industries (published Dec. 2014) Find Laurus nobilis in Victorian Biodiversity Atlas
  Bioregion Occurrence status Establishment means
Victorian Volcanic Plain present introduced
Gippsland Plain present cultivated
Goldfields present introduced
Highlands-Southern Fall present introduced

State distribution

Distribution map
South Australia
New South Wales
Australian Capital Territory