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Crapemyrtle, Common Lagerstroemia indica

Crapemyrtle (Crape Myrtle) - Lagerstroemia indica
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Clusters of deciduous blooms from mid-to-late summer in various shades of pink. Matures at 15-20 feet or may be pruned for an informal hedge. Does best in full sun and moist, well-drained soil. (zones 7-9)

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Zones 7 - 9 Zones 7 - 9
Hardiness Zones 7 - 9
The Common Crapemyrtle can be expected to grow in the zones shown in color in the arborday.org zone map. View Map
Flowering Tree Flowering Tree
Type of tree
Flowering Trees, Shrubs
15' - 25' High 15' - 25' High
Mature Height
The Common Crapemyrtle grows to be 15' - 25' feet in height.
6' - 15' Spread 6' - 15' Spread
Mature Spread
The Common Crapemyrtle has a spread of about 6' - 15' at full maturity.
Fast Growth Fast Growth
Growth Rate
This tree grows at a fast growth rate. More about this.
Full Sun Full Sun
Sun
This crapemyrtle does well in full sun.
Various Soils Various Soils
Soil

Tolerates a wide variety of soils from slightly alkaline to acidic, dry, but prefers moist, well drained sites.

Vase Shape Vase Shape
Shape
This crapemyrtle has vase shape.
Attributes

Striking flowers, handsome bark, and attractive fall foliage all combine to make the crapemyrtle a favorite landscape shrub. It is particularly well suited for the hot, sunny climates of the southern and southwestern United States. Once established, it will tolerate considerable drought. A beautiful specimen tree, it is often used in groupings, containers, hedges and screens, urban settings, and as a small street tree. A great abundance of cultivars have been selected for size, flower color, disease resistance, and cold hardiness. These particular Crapemyrtle seedlings are grown from seed or cuttings.

Description

The common crapemyrtle is a deciduous, small to medium sized shrub or small tree with a variable, moderately dense habit, often multi-stemmed form. The showy pink flowers have wrinkled petals like crepe paper. The foliage is dark green changing in fall to yellows, oranges, and reds. The thin gray bark is exfoliating, exposing a smooth, vari-colored under bark ranging from brown to gray. It needs plenty of moisture when young. After it is established it will tolerate drought and grow well in limited soil spaces. During the growing season, new growth can be pinched to increase flower number and branchiness. The branches will droop as the tree grows. The lower branches are often thinned to show off the trunk form and color. Because pruning can significantly reduce cold hardiness, you should try to have it completed by early August. Plant 3-4 apart for a single row hedge.

Wildlife Value

Attracts birds

History/Lore/Use

The common crapemyrtle is a native of China and Korea. It is called the "lilac of the South." The number of cultivars is enormous. Among these, the U.S. National Arboretum introductions are important for their disease resistance, good flowering, and ornamental bark.

Moisture

Prefers moist soil but has good drought tolerance.

Leaves

The leaves are opposite or the upper alternate, simple, 1-2 3/4" long, 3/4-1 1/2" wide, oval to oblong, lustrous medium to dark green with showy, yellow, orange or red colors in the fall. White flowered trees produce yellow fall color.

Flower Color

Pink 6-8" long, 3-5" wide showy panicles on new growth.

Bloom Time

late spring and summer into fall