The fresh or dried leaves can be used as a flavouring in soups etc
Wood - hard, heavy, close-grained, very strong, rather brittle
. It weighs 40lb per cubic foot
. The wood works well and is suitable for interior uses such as cabinets, but trees with large straight trunks are not sufficiently common to make the tree of commercial interest
Red bay was widely employed medicinally by the Seminole Indians who used it to treat a variety of complaints, but especially as an emetic and body cleanser
. It is little, if at all, used in modern herbalism.
The leaves are abortifacient, analgesic, antirheumatic, appetizer, emetic and febrifuge
. An infusion can be used to abort a foetus up to the age of four months
. An infusion is also used in treating fevers, headaches, diarrhoea, thirst, constipation, appetite loss and blocked urination
. A strong decoction is emetic and was used as a body purification when treating a wide range of complaints
. A decoction of the leaves is used externally as a wash on rheumatic joints and painful limbs
Seed - we have no information for this species but suggest sowing the seed in a greenhouse in early spring. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first 2 winters. Plant them out into their permanent positions in early summer and give some protection from winter cold for their first winter or two outdoors.
Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Persea borbonia. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.
We have found no cultivation details for this species in Britain, though the tree is likely to require a well-drained light to medium soil in a sunny sheltered position[K]. It is only likely to be hardy in the mildest areas of the country
Problems, pests & diseases
Associations & Interactions
There are no interactions listed for Persea borbonia. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.
Polycultures & Guilds
There are no polycultures listed which include Persea borbonia.
This table shows all the data stored for this plant.
Material uses & Functions
Native Climate Zones
Adapted Climate Zones
Native Geographical Range
Root Zone Tendancy
? 1.01.11.21.31.41.5 Elias. T. The Complete Trees of N. America. Field Guide and Natural History. Van Nostrand Reinhold Co. ISBN 0442238622 (1980-00-00)
? 2.02.1 Sargent. C. S. Manual of the Trees of N. America. Dover Publications Inc. New York. ISBN 0-486-20278-X (1965-00-00)
? 3.03.13.23.3 Britton. N. L. Brown. A. An Illustrated Flora of the Northern United States and Canada Dover Publications. New York. ISBN 0-486-22642-5 (1970-00-00)
? 4.04.14.24.184.108.40.206 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. ISBN 0-88192-453-9 (1998-00-00)
? Bean. W. Trees and Shrubs Hardy in Great Britain. Vol 1 - 4 and Supplement. Murray (1981-00-00)