Crepe Myrtles

Just when you think you know more than a person should about gardening, someone comes along and shows you how little you know… and I know nothing about Southern Gardening.

I have adored Southern U.S. gardens for years- and am particularly enamored of crepe myrtles.  I love their gorgeous bark and great blooms.  I had always assumed that they should be pruned like lilacs, after bloom and sparingly.  Au contraire!

My new Southern Correspondent corrected my assumption tonight with “Nope– trim in the winter.” So y’all who have those gorgeous crepe myrtles in your yard: get out there and prune the darn things.  I’ll have to amend the post later once I figure out how you actually prune them: hard? a light trim?  I vaguely recall that you can do a full pruning- all the way back to the crown… but I have no idea why you’d ever do that: it’s the bark that makes me so covetous of the darn things!

Maybe my new gardenlessness will result in my moving to a warm place where I can grow those gorgeous crepe myrtles!  Stranger things have happened.

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2 Responses to Crepe Myrtles

  1. alice thompson says:

    having lived in houston, atlanta and columbia s.c. for years until i moved to wi in july, i can share a little bit about pruning choices.

    if you prefer a tree-like shape then prune sparingly and get rid of the lower branches that create a bushy appearance. for a “bushy” crepe myrtle i suggest a vigorous pruning almost to the crown. personally i prefer the tree.

    i did not know that crepe myrtles could grow here and greatly enjoy and appreciate your blog

  2. gwendolyngarden says:

    You definitely cannot grow crepe myrtles in wi. Just to be clear.

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