Texas Mountain Laurel
TEXAS MOUNTAIN LAUREL
Evergreen – Sun/Part Shade
Ht. 20’ Spread 10’
HABIT: Slow growing, dense foliage, bushy unless trimmed into tree form. Fragrant, purple, wisteria-like flowers in spring. They actually smell like grape soda.
CULTURE: Any well-drained soil. Moderate to low water and feeding requirements.
USES: Specimen ornamental tree or large shrub. Drought-tolerant gardens. Can be grown in containers.
PROBLEMS: Winter damage in the northern parts of the state.
NOTES: Great in Central Texas but needs some protection in North Texas. Native to southwestern USA, Texas and Mexico.
Q: I have a mountain laurel that is 5 or 6 years old that has never bloomed. It is planted in good soil in full sun-any ideas?
A: Mine hasn't bloomed the last couple of years because of late freezes injuring the flower buds. Just enjoy the beautiful foliage and celebrate the flowers and their fragrance when they finally come.
Q: What is the best way to plant Texas Mountain Laurel seed pods and how long do they take to germinate? B.R., Temple.
A: They germinate fairly easily in 2 – 4 weeks if you do a couple things. Remove the red seeds from the pods and scratch the surface with heavy sandpaper or a file. Then soak the seeds in Garrett Juice for the night and plant in organic potting soil. My favorite these days is an equal mix of compost, coconut fiber and expanded shale. Add a small percentage of lava sand, Texas Green sand and decomposed granite to the mix. These additions shouldn't make up more than 20% of the total mixture. These are wonderful little spring blooming trees that should be used more in zone 8 and warmer zones blooming trees that should be used more in zone 8 and warmer zones.
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