If a gardener has a bay laurel tree and wants to preserve bay leaves for cooking purposes, he can either air dry them or place them in a cold oven overnight. To air dry bay leaves, a gardener can take a bay leaf branch from the tree, place it on a paper towel and allow it to dry in an airy location for a few weeks.
Leaves can also be air dried separately by placing a few individual leaves on an absorbent paper towel and putting them away in a dark and airy room for about a week. An alternative is to place paper towels between layers of leaves. They can then be placed in a cold oven overnight to dry. After the leaves dry, they can be stored in a airtight container.