Sunday, July 24, 2011

Crepe Myrtle - A Beloved Landscape Focal

Wrinkled Flowers Resemble Crepe Paper
My Crepe Myrtle is in bloom right now and I just had to share my thoughts on this wonderful shrub.  As you can see from the pictures, this shrub provides brilliant color when very little others are blooming.  Also considered a tree in some varieties, Crepe Myrtles are rather carefree, easy growers.  This particular one started around 3 or 4 foot high and has grown to this size, well over 12 feet within a 6 year period.  Yes, a fast grower.  They like sun and well drained soil and that is exactly what this one gets in its current location.  I suppose that has something to do with its vigor.

It seems to be a very hardy, disease and insect resistant species.  Just as I'm anxious for my Azaleas to bloom in the Spring, I am for my Crepe Myrtle to bloom in late Summer.  They also produce a wonderful, light, sweet fragrance.  This light pink color seems to be most prominent and the norm in this area of the Eastern US (Pennsylvania).  I do however see darker pinks hinging more toward purple as well from time to time and long to get my hands on one of them.  I suppose I'll have to order one online as I'm not finding the purple varieties in the local garden centers.

If you have the space or want a showy shrub (tree) that blooms when little else does, consider a Crepe Myrtle.  It blooms much longer than Azaleas and faded, initial blooms can be snipped to promote another, although less brilliant bout of blooming.

Plant them in the Fall or early Spring although they seem to be easier to find at merchants during fall planting time.  Prune with care as they bloom on their new growth and too much pruning may develop spindly branches that can not support the weight of the large blooms.  I have yet to prune mine and am thrilled with its shape and display of flowers, so a natural growth habit and shape has been most successful for me.  You can prune lower branches however to help push the growth toward the top and keep the bottom looking more trunk-like and tidy.

Color while little other shrubs are in bloom.
Other current, blooming shrubs are Rose of  Sharon

Go ahead and plant a Crepe Myrtle.  You won't be disappointed with this wonderful, landscape addition!


Post a Comment

Show me some love! I always enjoy your feedback and read each and every message!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...