How to Prune a Crepe Myrtle Bush

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

Learn how to prune a Crepe myrtle bush for beauty and health with these tips from the horticultural experts at Southern Living.

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Pruning Basics

Knowing how and when to prune your crepe myrtle bush is important to maintaining the health and beauty of the plant. The best time to prune is in late winter or early spring, before new growth begins. You’ll want to remove any dead or diseased branches, as well as any branches that are crossing or rubbing against each other.

The three types of pruning

Pruning can be divided into three types: heading, thinning and rejuvenation. Each type has a different purpose.

Heading cuts are made to remove the tips of branches, stimulating the plant to produce new growth. This type of pruning is often used to shape crepe myrtle bushes into spheres, cones or other desired shapes. It is important not to overdo heading cuts, as too much new growth can reduce the plant’s overall health.

Thinning cuts are made to remove entire branches, thinning out the plant to allow more air and light to reach the center. This type of pruning can also be used to shape crepe myrtle bushes, but it is a more drastic measure than heading cuts and should only be done if necessary.

Rejuvenation pruning is a drastic measure that involves cutting all the branches of a crepe myrtle bush down to 12 inches (30 cm) above ground level. This type of pruning is only necessary if the bush is severely overgrown or damaged. It should only be done in late winter or early spring, before new growth begins.

The best time of year to prune

Most varieties of crepe myrtles can be pruned any time from late fall to early spring. However, the best time to prune is late winter before new growth begins. This allows you to shape the plant before it starts putting out new shoots and leaves. If you wait until spring, you’ll end up cutting off some of the plant’s new growth.

Pruning a Crepe Myrtle Bush

The Crepe Myrtle bush is a beautiful, flowering plant that is a popular addition to many yards. The bush can grow to be quite large, so pruning is necessary to keep it looking its best. Pruning also encourages new growth and helps the bush to produce more flowers.

The three main types of crepe myrtle

The most common types of crepe myrtle are:
-Lagerstroemia indica, which is also called Indian crape myrtle or Chinese crape myrtle. It is native to China and India.
-Lagerstroemia fauriei, which is also called Japanese crape myrtle. It is native to Korea and Japan.
-Lagerstroemia speciosa, which is also called queen’s crape myrtle or giant crape myrtle. It is native to Vietnam.

The best time of year to prune a crepe myrtle

Pruning a crepe myrtle at the right time of year is important to encourage new growth and prevent damage to the plant. In general, the best time to prune a crepe myrtle is in late winter or early spring, before new growth begins. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when pruning a crepe myrtle.

First, if you live in an area with cold winters, it’s best to wait until after the last frost date to prune your crepe myrtle. This will help prevent damage to the plant from the cold weather.

Second, if your crepe myrtle is already starting to bloom, you should wait until after the blooming period is over to prune it. This will help ensure that you don’t accidentally remove any of the flowers.

Finally, if you need to remove any large branches from your crepe myrtle, it’s best to do this in late winter or early spring as well. This will allow the plant time to heal before the hot summer months begin.

How to prune a crepe myrtle bush

Pruning a crepe myrtle bush is a necessary step in keeping the plant healthy and vibrant. While it may seem like a daunting task, pruning is actually quite simple and only requires a few basic tools.

First, you will need to identify the main trunk of the plant, which is typically the largest branch. Using a sharp pair of pruning shears, cut away any branches that are growing out at an angle or are rubbing against another branch. Next, trim back any branches that are longer than the others, as these can overshadowed the shorter branches and prevent them from getting enough sunlight.

Finally, cut away any dead or dying leaves or branches. This will help improve air circulation and prevent disease from spreading to healthy parts of the plant. Once you have finished pruning, it is important to apply a thin layer of mulch around the base of the plant to help retain moisture and keep weeds at bay.

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About the author

Alex Kountry

Alex Kountry is the founder of HayFarmGuy and has been a backyard farmer for over 10 years. Since then he has decided to write helpful articles that will help you become a better backyard farmer and know what to do. He also loves to play tennis and read books