Trees of London |
This tree is famous for two reasons: first, its leaf is used as flavouring in cooking, i.e. the bay leaf, and second; wreaths made of its leaves were used to crown the Roman emperors, 'the laurel wreath' and from this came the expression 'resting on his laurels' to express someone who is contented with what he has already achieved.
Of course, this is a Mediterranean tree and when grown in Britain it is never quite the same as in its native habitat. It rarely fruits in Britain and the leaves never have much of a flavour, though they do have a recognizable odour. However, though it is rare in London, it is very common in gardens and parks in Britain, where it is mostly chopped to shape and used as an ornament, much like the holly tree.
by the entrance to a carpark
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