Crape myrtles yellowing in FL

I have several crape myrlte trees which were planted in late March.
They have been doing great, putting on much growth for young plants and blooming with colors as expected all summer.
Now, in mid-August, several have some yellow leaves. One has quite a few and almost no colored blooms left.
What is likely to cause these yellowing leaves? I did a search and found no mention of yellow leaves on crape myrtles aside from the change of color in the fall.
There have been a number of ants running up and down the branches. When I checked the trees after seeing the yellow leaves, there seem to be more than usual. I'm not sure if this is the cause. I also don't know what kind of ants they might be; they seem somewhat small for fire ants.
I've ensured the trees have a lot of water several times a week. There still is time-release fertilizer on the ground from my last application a couple months ago. The soil is mostly sandy and I live in Orlando, FL. The trees get full sun much of the day. It's been in the lower-mid 90s and high humidity for at least 2 months.
Do I need even MORE water? Do I need some added fertlizer? If so, what kind? Do I need to cut back on the water? Do I need to kill the ants? If so, how?
Any information on yellowing of crape myrtles in August in FL would be useful.
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Curious to find a question like this in home repair...but u can thank your lucky stars that I came across this, owning a crape myrtle going on 15 years and i live in brooklyn, ny. Before I give u my 2 cents..I have to find out if you bought this plant in Gainsville, Florida. If U did, then that could be the problem right there. Owner notorious for selling crape myrtles that for some reason most people, including me, had them all die. Now, if u didn't buy it there...what kind is it? Is it hardy variety? Sandy soil maybe the problem...not enough nutrients in such enviorment. Do not fertilize if a plant of any kind is sickly looking. I rarely ever fertilized my cm. Its now almost 12' high...going up to 20' eventually. Its in full bloom. It usually starts in mid July here and lasts through most of aug. I do not think your going to get fall color in your neck of the woods. To get that, the shrub has to cool off ( fall weather does that ) and I do not think your fall weather will match NY's fall weather. If u take a chance in fertilizing than i would try strictly nitrogen. You may have better luck in this newsgroup http://groups-beta.google.com/group/rec.gardens?lnk=la&hl=en
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Well... I figured "home repair" would have some ppl who were into landscape improvement, too, so I posted this here as well as a garden ng.
As for fall weather... we don't have a day under 90 here now, so it's surely not the coming of FALL which is doing this LOL Plus other local crape myrtles seem fine. Mine are young, though, and less established. My main thoughts are:
1. too much water 2. too little water 3. wrong fertilization 4. ants / bugs
I appreciate your thoughts :)

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Ever try asking the "Garden Rebel"? Or your local agriculture representative? It's FREE.
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Jim Yanik
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Take a sprig with leaves to your local nursery. It sounds like two things to me. One, it needs iron... a simple fix with an application of chelated iron. The other is that it is getting too much water, or it doesn't have good drainage.
I have had problems like this, and take a sprig from the plant with leaves that show the problem, and the info guy at the nursery has an answer in about ten seconds. Sometimes it's that pimply little geek that doesn't even have matching socks on. kinda hurts my feelings ..........
Steve
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Thanks. Yes; I thought of a few leaves (or a sprig if I can spare it). And yes... I always have faith in the geeks... they are the ones with the time to READ while too often the best looking savvy types spend time socializing :D
As for too much water... I've watered it a lot so that COULD be a problem... BUT... the one I watererd less showed more yellow (it's smaller). Also, drainage isn't a problem. I'm in almost pure sand here.

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Apropos wrote:

Sounds like too much water to me, as well. And that smaller tree would take less water, so if you were watering proportionately, it still could have been getting too much. I'd go easy on the fertilizer as well, without some local advice as was suggested below. :)
My crape myrtle was planted much too close to my house, and has to be cut back each year. It's about 20' and GA weather seems to suit it. Good luck with yours. bj

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