Bay trees can be planted in the ground (or a large pot) in full sun or partial shade. They are hardy trees and don’t need a lot of fertilising or attention.
For Melbourne climates it is best to buy an established plant, as you may find it difficult to get a cutting to take root.
The plants can take up a lot of space, so prune regularly. If you are using them as a hedging plant, then place them about 2 metres apart. Plant in Spring.
Summer is the best time to cultivate leaves, but you may do so all year round. The leaves dry easily (hang upside down in a cool dry place) and can be stored in airtight containers.