Prunus laurocerasus 'PIRANHA'®

Prunus laurocerasus
Prunus laurocerasus 'PIRANHA'®
cherry laurel
SIZE/TYPE medium-sized shrub
USUAL WIDTH 1.5-2.5m
LEAVES evergreen broadleaf
FLOWERS less showy but noticeable
LOCATION full to partial sun
SOIL TYPE acidic (peaty) to neutral
SOIL MOISTURE REQUIREMENTS evenly moist (dislikes drought)
USDA zone (lowest) 6   (down to -23°C)
FOR ZONE 5+6 Code of winter protection zone 5+6
FOR ZONE 7 Code of winter protection zone 7
BELONGS TO CATEGORIES Evergreen broadleaf
náhled fotonáhled foto

Some plants have a distinct tell as to who were their ancestors. Having checked the foliage of this cherry laurel it is clear that one of the parents for it must have been the South American predator fish piranha. Of course we are pulling your leg not expecting you to believe us but truly, the breeder must have been quite witty himself calling his achievement exactly the same: Piranha® cherry laurel.

Piranha® has distinctly serrated leaf margins that resemble piranha teeth, but these teeth are just a decoration – soft and harmless. The leaves are evergreen, leathery, 5-9 cm long, broadly elliptic, deep green, and glossy. In May appear erect racemes of small, creamy white, fragrant flowers that are followed by purple-black, spherical fruit (berries), loved by birds, not edible for humans, but not poisonous. Only the seeds from green, unripe fruit may cause some problems. Unless you want to keep the fruit for birds in your garden, you can prune the plant right after flowering to encourage new and clean growths without fruit.

Piranha® belongs to the new generation of cherry laurels, cultivated and reproduced to the exclusion of some older varieties, because it has better resistance to common laurel diseases and is hardier. This variety survived, without any damage, very bad conditions of late winter and early spring of 2012 (extremely low temperatures in countries with rather temperate climate, combined with dry soil and lack of snow insulation). It makes it a perfect choice for locations with harsh frost and long lasting winter.

Laurels need slightly deep and fertile, preferably acidic, moist soil, and extra watering in frost-free periods in winter as prevention from drying out before the ground gets frozen. They will thrive in full sun or part shade, and will also tolerate being grown in full shade but may loose their shape. Laurels seldom suffers from chlorosis (leaves turning yellow owing to lack of iron in the soil) but when it happens use a special liquid soil pH balancer to keep it acidic or add plenty of iron-rich fertilizer. Once established they run their roots deep enough to absorb nutrients from lower, usually clay ground. Experienced hardiness is down to -25°C (USDA zone 6) and is expected to go even lower.

Last update 12-02-2013

Prunus laurocerasus
Prunus laurocerasus
Prunus laurocerasus
  • STANDARD QUALITY - Plants of this group are 1st class quality with number of branches and overall density adequate to their size and age, considering they were container grown.
  • DE LUXE QUALITY - This label guarantees a luxurious quality of manually selected plants that, compared to their height and age, are exceptionally dense and beautiful.
  • EXTRA - These plants are usually mature and bigger specimens with exceptional overall appearance.
  • STANDARD (as described in the plant form) means a tree with a trunk of 190-210 cm and a crown at the top, unless specified differently. The commercial size for trees is their girth measured in the height of 1m from ground.
  • HOBBY - These plants are of the same quality as our standard-quality plants but younger and therefore cheaper.
  • SHRUB - a woody plant with branches growing bushy from the ground level.
  • HALF-STANDARD or MINI-STANDARD - a small tree with shorter trunk, its size is usually specified.
  • FEATHERED - These are trees with branches growing already from the base of the trunk and up along the stem.
  • GRASSES and PERENNIALS - Sizes given usually read the diameter of the pot or the clump, as specified.
LARGE PLANTS over 150 cmspecimens, screening and hedging shrubs

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