Pruning new crepe myrtles

My landscaper put in two new crepe myrtles at the end of my driveway. These are pretty large for new ones; I'm guessing at least 10' tall. Here's a pic:
http://www.vzwpix.com/mi/71294999_222506956_0.jpeg
Should I do any pruning? I've seen crepes around here being hacked way down to branch stumps; I don't want to do that. But I'm wondering if a little pruning would help in any way, or if I should just leave them alone for this year.
Thanks. - Mark.
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On 10 Mar 2006 06:29:13 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@thomaszone.com wrote:

refused the cookie). But generally I would say don't prune a new transplant at all. Maybe if you have a broken branch or a whip that shoots straight up through the middle of everything you could remove them, but probably still better to let it recover from the transplant shock this year. Irrigate frequently and deeply (up to 2X a day) at first and gradually taper off frequency while expanding area of irrigation. Mulch them to help them get established (http://www.treesaregood.com/treecare/mulching.aspx ). Once they are feeling at home, water once a week or less and maintain the mulch layer for the life of the trees.
In future, you will need to decide if you want trees or bushes. Crapes can go either way pretty easily. If you want trees (my choice in most cases), all you need to do is keep the roots sprouts cut off at the ground (a neverending task) and the interior whips pruned out to maintain the natural structure. Some people like to clip off the seed pods each year, and you could do so without much detrimental effect, but I don't bother on mine.
If you want a bush, let everything that sprouts out from the ground or interior stay and shear/shape the outside of the canopy (especially make it a point to clip the dominant tips of branches). You will quickly get a very bushy plant. The more severely you prune and top branches, the shorter the lifespan of the plants, in all likelihood. But crapes are tough, and you could enjoy them this way for a good, long time.
good luck, Keith Babberney ISA Certified Arbrist #TX-0236AT
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For pruning this is a must. If your library does not have it then they can order it. http://www.treedictionary.com/DICT2003/TPRUNING.html
--
Sincerely,

John A. Keslick, Jr.
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snipped-for-privacy@thomaszone.com wrote:

Leave them alone. In a year or two, if they are tree form, you should cut out crossing or rubbing branches, and you could consider selectively removing lower branches to limb it up into a nice tree shape.
Other than the shaping mentioned, I'm with you -- there's no need to mutilate crepes with annual topping. It just makes them shorter and uglier to look at in winter.
Mike On the North Carolina coast - Zone 8a (Remove spam traps from email address to reply.)
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