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:
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.
On 10 Mar 2006 06:29:13 -0800, email@example.com wrote:
I couldn't view the images ("Not available now" msg--maybe because I
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,
ISA Certified Arbrist #TX-0236AT
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.
On the North Carolina coast - Zone 8a
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