Posted by
Message
ThatsAFactJack
Seton Hall Fan
East Coast
Member since Sep 2012
1322 posts

Pruning Crepe Myrtles
I have a few Crepe Myrtles in my back yard that I have ashamedly let get out of control.

When is the best time to prune them back and what is the proper technique?

TIA


CoachChappy
LSU Fan
Boudin Capitol of the World
Member since May 2013
23548 posts
 Online 

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
quote:

When is the best time to prune them back and what is the proper technique?



Purists will tell you it is never. You can trim them after they have dropped their flowers, but still during the growing season. I usually just clean mine out from the middle.


Replies (0)
Replies (0)
10
hungryone
LSU Fan
river parishes
Member since Sep 2010
9703 posts
 Online 

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
Prune for desired shape. They absolutely DO NOT need to be pruned to flower, nor is the horrible, cut-off-the-entire-crown pruning a very good idea. It leads to a weak tree that tends to split.

So look at what shape the tree is now, and think about what shape you want to achieve. Some thoughtful consideration from different viewpoints will tell you what you need to remove.


SSpaniel
Memphis Fan
Germantown
Member since Feb 2013
18437 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
After they've bloomed. I'd wait till late winter/early spring. Prune any crossing branches, random branches that look like they don't belong and clean the middle out some and just maintain good shape. That's it.



Replies (0)
Replies (0)
50
NATidefan
Alabama Fan
Two hours North of Birmingham
Member since Dec 2008
29662 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
Dont dead head them whatever you do.


Replies (0)
Replies (0)
111
SSpaniel
Memphis Fan
Germantown
Member since Feb 2013
18437 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
quote:

They absolutely DO NOT need to be pruned to flower


Question... I didn't touch any of mine this year. They didn't bloom for crap. Barely at all. None of them. They HAD crepe myrtle bark scale, but I got a systemic and some dormant oil that took quick care of that. But still... no blooms. Did they just take the year off?


Zappas Stache
Utility Muffin Research Kitchen
Member since Apr 2009
25641 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
quote:

They HAD crepe myrtle bark scale, but I got a systemic and some dormant oil that took quick care of that. But still... no blooms. Did they just take the year off?


they certainly could have been still stressed. Give them a couple of years to recover.

Selective pruning of Crapes is fine. But please dont "Crape Murder"!



Aristo
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Jan 2007
9382 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
I usually just trim them when I hit my head on the branches as I walk under and sometimes not even then.


Replies (0)
Replies (0)
40
CAT
LSU Fan
Central Arkansas
Member since Aug 2006
6357 posts
 Online 

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
I've always been told February here in AR and that's when I do it. Have had neighbors do it when they start losing leaves and their CM always look good too.


SSpaniel
Memphis Fan
Germantown
Member since Feb 2013
18437 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
quote:

But please dont "Crape Murder"!



If you do that, you don't get the cool bark. Plus, they just look ugly. Branches grow that can't support the weight of the blooms. Just an awful practice all around. If you are going to do that, might as well prune them the same way you should prune a Bradford Pear. One single pruning cut horizontal to the ground as close to the ground as you can get it.


Replies (0)
Replies (0)
40
TD SponsorTD Fan
USA
Member since 2001
Thank you for supporting our sponsors
Advertisement
NATidefan
Alabama Fan
Two hours North of Birmingham
Member since Dec 2008
29662 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
I think early spring is the recommended time. So around end of February sounds right.


Zappas Stache
Utility Muffin Research Kitchen
Member since Apr 2009
25641 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
quote:

I think early spring is the recommended time.


Late Winter is the best time. Blooms occur on new growth so you want to prune before the spring growth.


Replies (0)
Replies (0)
10
Saskwatch
Ole Miss Fan
Member since Feb 2016
6562 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
quote:

please dont "Crape Murder"


I want to crape murder the one in front of my house. It's dropped a shite ton of detritus onto the walkway leading to the front landing.


SSpaniel
Memphis Fan
Germantown
Member since Feb 2013
18437 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
quote:

I want to crape murder the one in front of my house. It's dropped a shite ton of detritus onto the walkway leading to the front landing.


You didn't realize that this would happen when you planted it?


Saskwatch
Ole Miss Fan
Member since Feb 2016
6562 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
quote:

You didn't realize that this would happen when you planted it?


Came with the house I bought. I didn't know they did this.


arcalades
USA Fan
USA
Member since Feb 2014
8741 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
you can prune those things any time. I've got numerous crepe myrtles and have pruned at all times of the year for many years.


DMAN1968
Member since Apr 2019
167 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
The way it was explained to me was the easiest. Prune the Crepe in such a way as you can see "through" it...I guess what others are meaning when they say "the middle". Leave the tops alone. I hate when I see someone crop tops Crepe Myrtles...just cut them down completely if you are going to do that.


Replies (0)
Replies (0)
20
East Coast Band
Alabama Fan
Member since Nov 2010
39370 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
I have a beautiful crape myrtle that I've never pruned. It's about 20 feet tall, 15 foot span or so. Blooms nicely.



Replies (0)
Replies (0)
00
CrawDude
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Apr 2019
905 posts

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
Nice short article from Dr. Allen Owings landscape horticulturist Prune Crape Myrtles Properly


Replies (0)
Replies (0)
10
TeddyPadillac
New Orleans Pelicans Fan
Member since Dec 2010
14262 posts
 Online 

re: Pruning Crepe Myrtles
quote:

When is the best time to prune them back and what is the proper technique?



whenever you have time.
Take a chainsaw and cut at the base of the tree a few inches above the ground. Drill holes into stump. Pour grass/weed killer in it. Do this for a week. Stump dies. remove rotten stump a few months later. Your welcome.
Crepe Myrtles are the devil.
This post was edited on 10/10 at 10:31 am


Replies (0)
Replies (0)
32
first pageprev pagePage 1 of 2next pagelast page

Back to top

logoFollow TigerDroppings for LSU Football News
Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to get the latest updates on LSU Football and Recruiting.

FacebookTwitterInstagram