How to Prune Small Crepe Myrtle Bushes

by Alex Kountry
Updated on

Although crepe myrtle bushes are generally low-maintenance, they may require occasional pruning to remove dead or dying branches, as well as to shape the bush.

Checkout this video:

Why You Should Prune Small Crepe Myrtle Bushes

Pruning crepe myrtle bushes can seem like a daunting task, but it’s actually quite easy! Pruning helps to encourage new growth, shape the bush, and get rid of any dead or dying branches. It’s also a good way to keep your bush healthy and looking its best.

To Maintain a Healthy Plant

Pruning crepe myrtle bushes keeps them small, which allows you to maintain a healthy plant. If you do not prune your crepe myrtle, it will continue to grow until it becomes too large for its pot. A well-pruned crepe myrtle will have more flowers and be more manageable.

To Encourage New Growth

Pruning small crepe myrtle bushes encourages new growth, which is important for the health of the plant. By removing old, dead, or diseased branches, you allow new growth to emerge. This also helps to keep the plant looking its best.

To Prevent Pests and Diseases

Pruning your crepe myrtle bushes is important for several reasons. First, it helps to prevent pests and diseases from taking hold of the plant. Second, it encourages new growth, which can help the plant to recover from any damage that has been done. Finally, pruning helps to keep the plant looking its best.

There are a few things to keep in mind when you are pruning your crepe myrtle bushes. First, you should always prune in the early spring, before the new growth begins. Second, you should prune the bush back by about one-third its size. This will help to encourage new growth and prevent the bush from getting too big. Finally, you should always use sharp pruning shears when you are cutting back the bush. This will help to prevent any damage to the plant.

How to Prune Small Crepe Myrtle Bushes

Pruning your crepe myrtle bush is important to encourage growth and blooming. You should prune your crepe myrtle bush in early spring, before new growth begins. When pruning, you should remove any dead or diseased branches, as well as any branches that are crossing or rubbing against each other. You should also prune any branches that are growing inward toward the center of the bush.

The Right Time of Year to Prune

No matter what size plant you have, wait until the dormant season to prune it. This is typically late winter or early spring. By pruning during the dormant season, you give the plant time to heal over and prevent any further stress that could harm its health.

The Right Tools for the Job

Pruning shears are the tool of choice when pruning most small bushes, including crepe myrtle. The best type of pruning shears to use have sharp, blades that are slightly curved. This type of blade will give you a nice clean cut that won’t damage the branch you’re cutting.

There are two types of pruning shears – anvil and bypass. Anvil pruners have one straight cutting blade that comes down on top of a flat surface, kind of like a hammer hitting an anvil. These work well for cutting through tough branches, but they can crush more delicate stems. Bypass pruners have two sharp blades that slide past each other like scissors. These work well for cutting green, living tissue and won’t crush delicate stems.

You’ll also need a ladder if you can’t reach the branches you need to cut from the ground. A stepladder or an extendable fruit-picking ladder works well for this purpose.

The Right Technique

Pruning crepe myrtle bushes the right way can shape them into attractive hedges or mound-like shrubs, and improve their bloom production. But if you prune them the wrong way, you can damage or even kill them.

Here are some tips on how to prune crepe myrtle bushes the right way:

-Start pruning when the bushes are young. This will help them develop a strong structure that can withstand heavy frosts and winds.
-Prune in early spring, before new growth begins. This will prevent damage to newly developing leaves and buds.
-Use sharp shears or pruning saws to make clean, straight cuts. Ragged cuts can damage the plant and invite disease.
-Remove any dead, diseased, or damaged branches first. Then remove any branches that are crossing or rubbing against each other. Finally, remove any branches that are growing inward toward the center of the bush.
-Don’t prune more than one-third of the plant’s total growth in any one season. Removing too much at once can shock the plant and cause it to produce less blooms.

How Not to Prune Small Crepe Myrtle Bushes

Pruning crepe myrtles can be easy if you know how to do it. The first thing you need to know is that you never want to prune more than 1/3 of the plant. If you do, it will encourage new growth and you will have to prune it again in a few weeks.

Don’t Prune Too Early

Pruning too early is one of the most common mistakes people make when pruning small crepe myrtle bushes. Many people think that they need to prune their bushes as soon as the flowers start to fade, but this is actually the worst time to prune. Pruning too early will encourage new growth, which will then be killed by the first frost of the season. This new growth is also more susceptible to disease and pests. The best time to prune small crepe myrtle bushes is in late winter or early spring, before new growth starts.

Don’t Prune Too Much

You can prune your crepe myrtle to just about any size or shape you want, as long as you don’t prune more than one-third of the plant at a time. If you want a small shrub, choose a young plant and prune it early and often to shape it. As the plant gets older, you can still keep it small by pruning yearly, but you won’t be able to drastically change its size or shape.

Don’t Use the Wrong Tools

It is important to use the right tools when pruning crepe myrtle bushes. Small pruning shears or sharp scissors are best for deadheading or light shaping of the plant. Avoid using hedge trimmers, as they can damage the plant and promote disease.

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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


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