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Help and advice with our Portuguese Laurel trees

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Hi All,

Looking for some help and advice with our Portuguese Laurel trees, we have had them in for 3-4 years now, planted as established trees and up until last year they were going fairly well. However last year was not great for them and the same is starting to happen this year.
Some are better than others but now all have yellowing leaves to some extent, see pics, only seem to be able to load 3 but will try and add more.
6 trees in all (sorry about the mess, waste from lockdown projects...) generally 3, 4 and 5 from left to right seem to be the healthiest.

Pruned them top and front late last year to see if that would help, this year they have been fed and watered regularly, the soil is very free draining. Have planted other plants around the base of some and soil is certainly not wet or boggy so don’t think it can be over watering... Could it be they are still not getting enough water?? Generally have been watering once a week or so but in this heat giving them more when watering the rest of the garden... There is plenty of new growth which is encouraging but can’t explain the yellowing leaves. The idea was to use them as screening which they are doing but they just don’t seem very happy at the moment.

Any help, suggestions or questions would be welcome.
A good feed for them would also be helpful, have been using a premium organic seaweed fertiliser and applying by foliar spray but happy to change if it helps.
All a bit confusing as I thought they should be fairly bullet proof.

Look forward to hearing from you.


On plant Prunus Lusitanica

Portuguese_laurel_2 Portuguese_laurel_6 Portuguese_laurel_10



Evergreens do lose some of their leaves like this in Spring/summer - they do not keep one set of leaves indefinitely.

28 May, 2020


I would agree the odd leaf lost isn't a problem but if the soil is free draining they may not be getting enough. especially as you have underplanting also taking up water. Don't over feed as that can cause as many problems as under feeding.

28 May, 2020


Good advice from both previous members. They have covered insufficient water, too much feed and annual leaf loss. I would adopt all these measures and if you still find that the leaves are yellowing then a feed of Epsom Salts which contain magnesium.

28 May, 2020


Thanks for the above responses Steragram2, Seaburngirl and Jimmytheone.
I have been watering regularly and only just planted the other plants beneath the Laurels, i dug big holes for each and the soil was certainly not water logged anywhere, dry enough to be sieved to remove all the stones, etc. before planting. So think over watering is not the issue, as I am watering regularly don’t think under watering is the issue either...
Regarding feeding I haven’t really used much apart from the foliar spray, should I try a root drench as well or a good feed dug in? Do I have to use a specialist type for Laurels or will general fertiliser be ok, have a good organic rose feed? Would a mulch/manure at this time of year be good, I usually go it in late autumn…
Really appreciate the advice.
Best regards,


29 May, 2020

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