Priority: - Eradicate
Tags: Terrestrial | Toxic
Identification and Reproduction
Spurge-Laurel is an evergreen shrub native to Britain, with spring-blooming yellowish green flowers and black berries.
- Approximately 1.5 meter height
- Leaves are very dark green, shiny, smooth and thick.
- The twigs are stout and have a strong odor when cut.
- Flowering occurs from late January to late March or early April, followed by berries in early summer - flowers are pale yellow and located between leaf nodes (not at the tip of stems like other similar shrubs like rhododendrons)
- Occurring in late summer, the berries are black and poisonous to people and pets, but not to birds.
- Spurge laurel can reproduce by seed or reproduce vegetatively through the production of root sprouts.
Habitat & Ecology
- Spurge laurel can grow in a wide range of conditions, but thrives in full to partial shade and well-drained soils.
- Outcompetes to certain native forest ecosystems.
- Contain toxic sap has been known to cause skin rashes, nausea, swelling of the tongue, and coma.
- IMPORTANT: Due to the irritating toxins in the sap, stem, leaves, and fruits, it is advisable to wear gloves and other protective gear when handling spurge laurel.
- Hand pulling small infestations is effective.
- Larger shrubs that are too big to pull can be cut below soil line.
- Watch the area for resprouts and recut as needed.
- Aminocyclopyrachlor, aminopyralid, glyphosate, imazapyr, and triclopyr + 2,4-D applied as cut stem treatments gave promising results in initial trials.
- Imazapyr and triclopyr + 2,4-D applied to foliage also resulted in good control.