Evergreen Shrub


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Hello everyone. I have an overgrown evergreen shrub that I’m trying to ID. I obviously want to know what it is before I try to cut it back too much. I’m in Southern New Jersey. Thanks!

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Welcome to the forum @jhealsnj . I don`t think it is a laurel. That leaf reminds me of Osmanthus 'fragrans' - one I used to propagate when I worked at the nursery.
 
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Welcome to the forum @jhealsnj :)

Not a Bay Laurel. I'd be cautious when identifying a potentially poisonous shrub as an edible.
 
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My mistake Bay Laurel has wider leaves, and thank you zigs for pointing that out, very important. Here's a photo of a Bay Laurel, very close resemblance but different.
 

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Greetings, welcome to the Forums.

The plant shown in the OP is a native shrub known as Southern Bayberry (Myrica heterophylla, formerly Myrica carolinensis or Morella carolinensis), also known as Swamp Bayberry. Though usually evergreen, this species is easily confused with the usually deciduous Northern Bayberry (Myrica pennsylvanica). The waxy coating on Bayberry fruit was once used to make candles.
 

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