Friday, July 29, 2011

Crape Mytle Tree

Crape Mytle Tree 06/21/2011


 It is belived that Marco Polo discoverd the Crape Myrtle tree in the Orient and brought it back to Europe.   The Grape Mytle is more of a southern tree or bush.  Some Crape Myrtles were planted around the Governor's garden in Williams burg, Virgina and they are still there.  They have a very long life and grow to be about 30 feet tall and about 10 to 15 feet across.  The Crape Myrtle is not a very fast growing tree.  A lot of people commit Crape murder, the way they prune the tree.  You can shape it up but do not cut the limbs all the way back to the trunk, this is called Crape murder by the Master Gardeners.  I only cut off what I do not want to grow.  I decided how high I wanted my lowest limb to be from the ground, I cut off any growth below that.  I never let my tree produce seeds and I am rewarded with another blooming.  My Crape Myrtle bloomed 3 times last year.  I found out they would bloom more that once accidentally.  My girls gave me 5 Crape Myrtle trees when I lived in Marion, La.  I planted them in flowers beds, and did not want them to drop the seeds so sprouts would come up, to me this does not look neat, and it can crowd the other plants.  So when their blooms began to fall, I cut the blooms off.  Low and behold they re bloomed, another plus.  So instead of just one blooming a year I have two or three.   Color last a lot longer.    

Close up of my Crape Myrle bloom
I bought this tree in July,2007.  Charlotte, my daughter and I went on a trip to Charleston, South Carolina.  I always have to go to the nurseries in Shreveport, La. before I go home.  We went to my favorite place and bought several small plants and this tree, we had a hard time getting it in the car. I planted my small plants first.. I remove the dirt from the hole and mix coffee grounds and compost to it, then plant my flowers.  However I have a lot of left over soil to carry  to another bed.  By the time I got around to planting this tree, which was about 5 ft tall, my back was hurting so bad I could not lift the tree.  I have told you in earlier posts how I moved next door to Carrel Sheffield in October of 2006 and we became friends.  So to my friend Mr. Sheffield I went and ask if he would help me.  He smiled and planted my Crape Myrtle.  This was the first plant Carrel planted, but not the last.  He asked didn't I have a wheel barrow, yes, but did not think about it.  I always do things the hard way.  I don't know how many buckets of dirt I carried that day, but my back did.  Hope you have enjoyed this page about the Crape Myrtle, and you will not commit Crape murder.  Try cutting your blooms off and see if you will have an extended blooming time with your Crape Myrtle.  My Crape Myrtle tree has just began to bloom the second time this year, it bloomed three times last year.
Just beginning to re bloom 07/29/2011
Bees love Crape Myrtles  08/03/2011
Hope you will continue to watch my garden grow and grow one of your own.  Happy gardening to you from me.  Juanita


  1. Because of the hard winter and the sub zero temps, we were forced to commit Crape Murder. We had to cut the bush down and all those little sprouts had to take over and become the tree. I just wanted to confess. It turned out all right in the end though.

  2. Juanita, I really enjoyed reading your post on Crepe Myrtles ! I love them and have several, don't ever commit crape murder but don't prune off the dead blooms...birds eat them ! Doesn't seem to hurt their blooming ! Your close up is gorgeous ! Must be at it's peak !

    1. Thank you for commenting glad you do not comment crepe mytle murder.

  3. I don't think I could have too many of these trees. Just love them when they are in bloom but really needed to learn how to prune these trees and this article has helped a lot. Hopefully now I will not commit Crape