Monday, June 24, 2019


It has been hot here.  Of course it's officially Summer now so it's what we expect.

We have two plant questions at the bottom of this post so scroll down if you want to skip to that.

Needless to say, near 100 degree temps and "feels like" temps of 115 means there won't be much done outside.  Since the window unit can barely keep up, it's best to err on the side of caution and heed the city's advice:  Keep outdoor activities to a minimum.

Overcast hot day
The sky was overcast later in the day and by late afternoon a few sprinkles started.  That didn't cool things down though it made it worse (more humidity which makes the feels like temp go up).  Today is supposed to be stormy but nonetheless I watered everything well, pulled a few weeds and that was it.

No mowing or edging this weekend.  I could have but as long as we don't have daily rain, I can usually go every other week this time of year.

Bay Laurel tree
This is the bay laurel tree on the porch (2nd Man loves his bay leaves in cooking!).  It's getting big while still in the same pot I planted it in.  When we got it, it was about 4" tall.  Now it's about 4' tall.

Anyone have experience with these?  Planting them in the ground or best to keep in a container?  I need to prune it too.

We're not too worried about freezing because now we can put it behind the house where we can protect it along with the citrus trees if necessary.  Our soil has so much clay that we don't want to stunt it by putting it in the ground but instead of a 4x4 raised bed we were thinking maybe just a large container like a whiskey barrel planter?

And this is a HUGE row of honeysuckle in full bloom (just as much is off camera too).  Anyone have any good uses for honeysuckle flowers?  The scent is so wonderful.  We can smell it all over the property and of course bees love it.  We'd also like to transplant some to other areas.  Any suggestions?

Thanks in advance for tips and advice!


  1. Bay leaf trees will not tolerate if the soil that does not drain well. Applications of compost or other organic matter will help to keep the soil draining well.
    Bay Laurel can be grown indoors in pots, and outdoors as shrubs and also as trees. It is a slow growing plant and can reach heights of 59 feet in the conditions are right.
    Although the plant is actually a tree, it can be kept smaller by pruning the plant or growing it in containers near your vegetable garden.
    Container grown plants will not get to this large size. Prune it so that it gets no taller than 5-6 feet so that you can move it indoors when the weather gets colder. If it's in a container and getting root bound, then plant into the next size larger container and it should grow nicely for you in a container. Planted in the ground; of course it will grow much taller but by pruning you can keep it to a minimum size.
    The plant grows best in full sun to partial shade. If you grow it outdoors in hot climates, it will benefit from some afternoon shade.
    If you grow the plant indoors, it will need bright light and the occasion misting to keep the humidity level as the plant likes it or can set the container in a saucer filled with pebble rock.
    Trees grown outside don’t generally need much in the way of fertilizer but container plants will benefit from a balanced organic fertilizer such as fish emulsion in the spring and summer.
    Bay trees are dioecious, which means that both male and female plants are needed to produce seeds that are viable. The seeds form on the female plants and are contained inside the berries that form in the fall. Each female flower has a single seed.


    How to Make & can Honeysuckle jelly:

    1. Drying Bay leaves:

  2. How to prune / shape a Bay Leaf Tree; (loads of information on when to repot, using bubble wrap to wrap your container in the cold winter months, etc.

  3. i have 3 bay trees that i started from sticks. i being them into my garden room in winter and keep them by the windows. mine are about 5 feet high and growing. i re-potted them this year for the first time. they were root bound and the leaves were turning yellow. as soon as i changed the pots they turned green and put out new growth. i love them. that is wild honeysuckle and can become very invasive. it's hard to get rid of it.

  4. I always wanted to try making honeysuckle syrup. It should be fairly easy, but the only access I have to large amounts of wild honeysuckle is in areas I had rather not harvest (yeah, think slithering things and chiggers)

  5. Your bay laurel looks so healthy. I bought one several years ago and planted it by my vegetable garden. It gets watered regularly when I water the garden. It has done well there. I do cover it up whenever we have anything lower than a mild freeze. It’s about the size of yours.
    The honeysuckle looks gorgeous. I have some on my back fence. I like to pick a blossom and nibble on it to get a taste of the sweet nectar.
    I got .4 of rain early this morning and it looks like we’re going to get some more rain tonight or tomorrow.

  6. It is so freaking hot. I know nothing about plants, but it looks as if you have comments from knowledgeable people. Your plants looks as if they grow well. The soil here is very sandy. I don't have much luck with growing thing, including grass.


  7. I also have a bay"tree". It too started as a 4 inch plant and has grown to over 5 feet, and is, indeed, taller than me. Since I live in Canada it lives outside in the summer and returns indoors in the winter. It thrives on benign neglect. I water it, but have never fed it. I also over winter my rosemary plant and no longer plant it in the ground. It is wonderful to have at least two fresh herbs in the wintry, snowy months.

  8. I have loads of honeysuckle in my yard. I like to pick it and suck out the nectar. I don't know about bay laurel, vbut my cherry laurel make it just fine in the winter. It is about 40 feet high and provides much shade. IF YOU put it with the trees, make sure it does not provide too much shade for them.


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