Question: I have several bay leaf bushes, but one appears to be dying. What can I do – if anything – to nurse it back to health?
Three things are going to be a problem for you. First, judging from your picture, it is in rock mulch. This plant will not handle a rock mulch environment very well. If it is going to work for you in rock, then it should be in an eastern exposure where the wall would be to its west. That is why you are seeing the leaves with brown tips and edges. Second is the yellow color developing on the new leaves and at the ends of the branches. Most likely, this is a nutrient deficiency due to the desert soil. Third, it is not terribly tolerant of low winter temperatures.
I would move it to a new location this fall, about mid-September to October. Move it somewhere where the sun won’t hammer it after noon or 2 p.m. Heavily compost the soil when you plant it.
Bob Morris is a professor emeritus in horticulture with the University of Nevada and can be reached at email@example.com. Visit his blog at xtremehorticulture.blogspot.com.