Wildlife Resources
Wildlife Resources Logo
Wildlife Home Contact Us News DNR Home
Hunting
Fishing
Law Enforcement
Publications
Disability Services
News/Info
Licensing
go Wild!
License Plate
Kid Zone
go Wild

Native Shrubs in Wildlife Landscaping

Mountain Laurel
Mountain Laurel
Good Food and Excellent Cover

Mountain Laurel Kalmai latifolia

Form:
Thick, coarse evergreen shrub or small gnarled tree 6 to 9 feet tall often forming dense thickets.

Bark:
Roughened by narrow, thin scales which peel off exposing brownish inner bark.

Leaves:
Simple, smooth, evergreen, alternate 1 to 5 inches long, to 1 inch across.

Fruit:
Dry globose smooth capsule. Inconspicuous.

WV Range:
Probably in every county but most abundant in the mountains.

Natural Habitat:
Rocky or gravelly soil in acid woods. Often found in thickets with Great Laurel (Rhododendron maximum).

Wildlife Use:
Leaves are poisonous to livestock and humans. Deer browse the plants and ruffed grouse eat the leaves and twig tips.

Horticulture:
Uses: Best planted in groups as border or screen, also naturalizing along roadsides.
Light: Shade to full sun. Flowers best in full sun.
Soil Moisture: Dry to moist. Growth is better in moist conditions.
Soil pH: Acid
Problems: Leaves often get a leaf-spot disease which make the foliage less appealing.

Compiled by: Katharine B. Gregg, professor of biology, West Virginia Wesleyan College , Buckhannon , West Virginia .

Written by West Virginia Native Plant Society members and jointly published with the WV Wildlife Diversity Program.


Return to Native Shrubs listing


HOT TOPICS...
Trout Stocking |  Wildlife Viewing |  Licenses/Permits | 
 | Fishing Waters |  Park Regulations | 
Contact Webmaster | dnr.wildlife@wv.gov
2003 West Virginia Division of Natural Resources