Trying to decide between a Gumbo Limbo and a Laurel Oak.

Free trees offered by our town. Want to create shade for our backyard but don’t want anything too messy. Which would be your choice?



  1. 0 Votes

    Here are some of the main differences:

    The Laurel Oak (Laurifolia) is generally described as a perennial tree. This is native to the U.S. (United States) has its most active growth period in the spring and summer . The greatest bloom is usually observed in the early spring, with fruit and seed production starting in the summer and continuing until fall. Leaves are not retained year to year. The Laurel Oak (Laurifolia) has a short life span relative to most other plant species and a rapid growth rate. At maturity, the typical Laurel Oak (Laurifolia) will reach up to 70 feet high, with a maximum height at 20 years of 28 feet.

    The Laurel Oak (Laurifolia) is easily found in nurseries, garden stores and other plant dealers and distributors. It can be propagated by bare root, container, seed. It has a slow ability to spread through seed production and the seedlings have medium vigor. Note that cold stratification is not required for seed germination and the plant cannot survive exposure to temperatures below -3°F. has low tolerance to drought and restricted water conditions.


    Gumbo Limbo

    Tolerant of drought, salt-spray and hurricane winds, the gumbo limbo (Bursera simaruba) also has shiny gray to reddish brown bark that flakes away. It typically grows 20 to 30 feet tall, but very old specimens reach 50 to 60 feet tall. Its only inconvenience as a shade tree is that it briefly drops its foliage during the hot and dry month of May when shade is appreciated before it re-foliates during the rainy season’s start.

    *Read more: South Florida Shade Trees | Garden Guides

    – So, to answer your question, it looks like the Gumbo Limbo may be a bit messier than the Laurel Oak…

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