Trust us. Your crape myrtle is probably not dying! Let us explain…
There is no denying the beauty of a crape myrtle. With their spectacular blooms in the summer and their blazing fall colors, we can understand why many people choose to put these into their landscapes.
This year we have had several calls concerning crape myrtles and their second year growth. What people are asking:
“My crape myrtle was planted last year and this year it looks like it didn’t make it over the winter. It looks dry and we do not see any growth. Is my crape mrytle dead?”
There are two forms of crape myrtles: trees and strubs. Though any tall variety can make a tree, at some point one winter will be so harsh that the crape myrtle will die back to the ground. When that plant makes it’s comeback, new growth will come from the ground leaving behind seemingly dead tops.
Don’t expect any shoots just yet. A good rule of thumb for your crape myrtles is to expect them to leaf out around Mother’s Day in May. Leafless branches won’t come back, so they’ll have to be pruned off once you’re certain nothing is going to happen above ground. If nothing’s coming up from the ground or from the branches by mid to late June, then chances are your crape myrtle didn’t make it and it’s time to come see us for a new one.