Spurge laurel

Spurge Laurel

Scientific name: Daphne laureola

Common names: Spurge laurel

Description: Spurge laurel is a perennial evergreen shrub that grows relatively slowly and tolerates shady conditions. Originally from the Mediterranean, it was introduced to the Pacific Northwest as an ornamental. Spurge laurel has a growth habit similar to a small tree and dark green shiny leaves that are whorled at the end of stems. The green flowers are inconspicuous and the black berries are poisonous. Often, spurge laurel grows in isolated clumps, however it is capable of forming dense monocultures.

Impact: Spurge laurel can have a negative impact upon native ecosystems and once established it is very difficult to remove. Furthermore, plant material is poisonous and the sap of the plant can cause skin irritation. The seeds of spurge laurel are distributed by birds and rodents and it can also reproduce by root sprouting. If you encounter spurge laurel in the county please contact our office at 503-325-4571.

Source: KingCounty.gov

For more information, please visit the Noxious Weed resources at KingCounty.gov: http://www.kingcounty.gov/services/environment/animals-and-plants/noxious-weeds/weed-identification/spurge-laurel.aspx