I love to garden and I love to see plantings that are well nurtured, well taken care of. These photos, taken today in Cedar Park, Texas are the opposite of what I like to see. I, like so many others call this ”Crepe Murder”. The butchering of Crepe Myrtles is also called topping and is not the correct way to prune and nurture this beautiful botanical species. Crepe Myrtles bloom all summer long, providing shade and beauty to our Central Texas landscapes. Crepe Myrtle varieties are available with many different colors of flowers. White, pink, lavender and red are some of the most popular bloom colors. In the winter, their deciduous leaves fall and they allow the sun to shine in. The least we can do is provide them the minimal care they need to live long and healthy lives. Committing Crepe Murder leaves the poor plants in a weakened state, more susceptible to disease, drought and other life threatening and life shortening events. This bad practice not only makes them look like an ugly stump but also makes them bloom less. There are dwarf and semi-dwarf varieties if you want them to stay small. I like to allow the big ones to stretch out their limbs an provide abundant shade for my yard and home. Let’s reward Crepe Myrtles for their hard work and not make them ugly, heart broken and forlorn.
Properly Pruning Crepe Myrtles
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