Crape myrtles are a popular choice for homeowners looking for a flowering plant that is both beautiful and easy to grow. However, what many people do not know is that your crape myrtles require very specific care to thrive. They need lots of sunlight, well-drained soil, and occasional pruning to keep their shape.
This guide will cover the basics of how to grow crape myrtles so you can enjoy them for years to come!
What are Crape Myrtles?
Crape myrtles are beautiful flowering trees that are native to eastern Asia but can be found in many parts of the United States. They can grow up to 20-25 feet tall and have a lifespan of about 20 years. These plants are typically seen as ornamental, but they also have other uses.
Crape Myrtles are in the family Lythraceae, which is made up of over 600 species of flowering plants. The Crape Myrtles in this family all have flowers that grow on long stems and come in a variety of colors including pink, purple, red, white, and yellow.
Crape Myrtle Fertilization – The Key to a Long-Lived Tree
The key to a long-lived crape myrtle is proper fertilization. This can be done by adding compost or fertilizer to the soil around the tree’s roots.
The best time to fertilize your crape myrtle is during the spring months when the leaves begin to appear. You should use a fertilizer with a high nitrogen content and apply it at a rate of 5 pounds per 100 square feet of ground space. A crape myrtle will also need plenty of water to keep it healthy and flowering all year long.
Sunlight Exposure & Temperature
When it comes to their care, one of the most important things for a crape myrtle is sunlight exposure. Crape myrtles need 6-8 hours of direct sunlight each day in order to thrive. If they are not getting enough sun, they will begin to show signs of stress such as drooping branches and browned leaves. If you notice any signs of stress, it may be time for repotting or trimming the branches.
Crape myrtles need full sun exposure and they thrive best in warm climates. They can be planted in USDA zones 7-10 but if you live outside of these zones it is best to consult with your local garden center before planting one because they may require more care or maintenance than other types of plants.
Soil Preparation and Fertilizer Requirements
Soil preparation and fertilizer requirements are important factors in the growth of plants. Soil preparation is important because it ensures that the soil has all the nutrients in it needed for a plant to grow. Fertilizers are used to provide additional nutrients that may be lacking in the soil.
The first step in preparing your soil for planting is to break up any large clumps or chunks with a shovel or garden rake. Next, add organic matter like compost to help provide nutrients and improve moisture retention in sandy soils.
Some plants, like crape myrtles, require more fertilizing than others. They are heavy feeders and need to be fed often with nitrogen-rich fertilizers like ammonium sulfate or urea.
Pruning and Branch Removal
Pruning is a common practice in the landscape industry. It is used to maintain trees and shrubs, and to remove dead or diseased branches.
The best time to prune shrubs is in the early spring before their leaves emerge. The first reason is that it helps rejuvenate the plant by stimulating new growth. The second reason is it will help you to identify any diseases or pests that could have affected the plant.
Conclusion and Next Steps
Crape myrtles are beautiful flowering trees that can be found in many homes across the United States. They can grow up to 20 feet tall and come in a variety of colors such as pink, purple, red, white, and more. These trees are a great addition to any garden or landscape but there are some things you should know before planting them.
Are you looking for an organically-grown crape myrtle tree? If so, contact us now! Chambersville Tree Farms is a locally run business in the North Central Texas area that offers a wide variety of evergreen and deciduous plants. Whether it’s to beautify your yard or make a special gift, we have the perfect crape myrtles for you!