It is a bush that under certain conditions may become a tree and in some cases it may be quite big. It stands drought and it develops faster if it has water. Big and many bay trees exist in Mylopotamos, Karavas and also anywhere there is plenty of water. Bays are also found next to monuments, since bay leaves were and are used on the heads of the honored people. Its leaves are aromatic and they are widely used in Greek cuisine (e.g. lentils, red meat etc). Mythology says that Apollo fell in love with nymph Daphne (Bay), but she didn’t accept his love and here mother Gaia (Earth) turned her into the homonymous tree to save her. Ever since, bay was Apollo’s sacred tree and it was used as a means of clearing due to its aromatic property.
Scientific Name: Laurus nobilis
Kythera Name: Dafni, Vagia
Name in other places of Greece: Dafni, Vagia, Fyllada
Collection: Leaves are collected (and in some cases bay fruits without their cores as they are toxic and dangerous).
Properties: Essential oil fights aerophagy. Additionally, it reliefs cases of chronic rheumatism and arthritis. Bay drink dissolves salts in the human body. Bay fights indigestion and enhances digestion. It is considered to be an effective antiseptic. Bay has also astringent, antidiarrheal and cholagogue property.