Mountain Laurel, a Cut Flower?

by Paul A. Foerster, Bexar County Master Gardener

Photo by Paul A. Foerster

This photo shows a cutting taken from an inconspicuous place on one of our Texas Mountain Laurels (Dermatophyllum secundiflorum). 

When the cutting was taken, the buds were just beginning to show purple. This is how it looked 10 days later, after sitting in plain water from our RO filter.

I didn’t expect the buds to continue developing. But they did, opening fully as shown. And its characteristic scent from this one little sprig fills the kitchen (where it stays when not having its picture taken) with the same aroma that fills the outdoors as you walk by mountain laurels in the springtime.

You can’t really characterize Texas Mountain Laurel as a “cut flower.” It blooms only once during the year. And not everybody enjoys its scent. My mother (who would be 114 years old, were she still alive) thought the smell was like a beer brewery. 

But it is interesting that its cuttings can continue to develop in the same way that buds from other cut flowers do.

Enjoy the spring!

Learn more about the Texas Mountain Laurel blooming all over town now!