Archive for the ‘Crape myrtle (Lagerstroemia)’ Category

Stop The “Crape Murder”

In Tennessee (where I live) and in the Southeastern U.S., bad crape myrtle (Lagerstroemia x) pruning continues to be done by professional landscapers and homeowners (USDA hardiness zones 6-9). This practice, also called “topping”, reduces tree (or shrub) height. Over 25 years, Southern Living magazine called this “crape murder”. Crape murder is not going away. More crape […]

Powdery Mildew Disease Resistant Cultivars

Gardeners have learned to associate certain plants with a troublesome disease(s). Powdery and downy mildews have become epidemic in many regions of the U.S. Best ways for managing mildew diseases are prevention, good cultural practices, and spraying.. First, avoid planting susceptible cultivars. Plant in the proper location and space plants far enough apart so they’re not touching. Surrounding […]

Five Simple Pruning Tips For DIYers

Gardeners are frequently scared about making pruning mistakes. There are lots of gardening books filled with lots of before and after photos. Let’s face facts…your yard tree or shrub does look like the ones pictured in the pruning book. Here are my simple 5 steps for pruning: Why and When to prune: You can prune a […]

Landscape Trees With Winter Interest

Does your winter landscape look a bit shabby? This coming spring take some action by planting trees that should perk up its appearance. New tree choices should ratchet up seasonal interest, attract more bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds in the spring-summer and hungry fruit feeding birds in fall-winter. Making smart tree choices can add four-seasons of interest to your yard. […]

Crape Myrtles Exhibit Beautiful Bark In Winter

The flowers of crape myrtles are a wonderful floral treat in the summer months, several exhibit gorgeous exfoliating bark. Some also show off autumn foliage colors. Here are the best ten species and cultivars of crape myrtles noted for their exfoliating bark. Lagerstroemia hybrids (L. indica x L. fauriei) Hopi – 8-10 feet semi-dwarf shrub; gray brown exfoliating bark; medium pink […]

Recommendations On Hardy Crape Myrtles

Crape myrtles are dependable trees and shrubs in zones 7 – 10). In northern areas of USDA zone 6, a number of crape myrtle varieties (cultivars) have rated as winter hardy perennials and are not dependable woody trees or shrubs. In northeastern U.S. cities such as Philadelphia, Wilmington or Baltimore, crape myrtles are rated as hardy perennials. In […]

Japanese Crape Myrtle Flaunts Stunning Bark

Most crape myrtle cultivars marketed through garden centers are hybrids that combine the large colorful flowers of Common Crape myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica) with the mildew-resistant foliage and cold hardiness of Japanese Crapemyrtle (L. faurei). Japanese Crape myrtle are cold hardy (USDA hardiness zones 6-b to 9) and are heat tolerant. They are rated hardy to winter minus 10 […]

Reviving A Severely Damaged Crape Myrtle In The Spring

                  Crape myrtles (Lagerstroemia indica and hybrid cultivars) are rated as hardy perennials and semi-hardy shrubs or trees in USDA zone 6 and parts of zone 7. Since the year 2000, an average of 1 out of 3 winters has killed some crape myrtles to the ground. By […]

Avoid Crape Myrtle Woes In Winter

  It’s no secret that in many areas with cold winters (USDA hardiness zones 6-9), hardy crape myrtle cultivars are now available. In northern areas like eastern Maryland and northern VA, crape myrtles have been prospering for two decades and more. However, there is one rule regarding winter care — “Don’t Touch”. Hold off all pruning of crape […]

10 Winter Care Tips For Landscape Plants

              Fall-planted perennials, shrubs and trees need some additional attention. Here are 10 basic tips to help plants get past potential winter woes: Select balled-and-burlapped (b&b) or container-grown plants rather than bare-rooted stock. Most bare-root plants are planted in late winter or early spring when plants are still dormant. Evergreens, […]