Is it too early to prune crape myrtles?

Julie717February 25, 2012

Hi guys--I would rather not prune crape myrtles at all, but last year my neighbors pruned two of my three bushes down to fat stumps, it looked like they just sawed them straight across with a chainsaw. I probably should have just let them do the same to the last one, but I tried to head them off by pruning it more gently before they got to it. Then, I accidentally damaged that tree with herbicide when I killed a catalpa stump growing through the middle of it.

Long story short, they don't match in size now, so I need to prune them.

My question, is it too early now? I have time to do it this weekend, and I want to beat the neighbors in case they get any more ideas. But I don't want to hurt the trees either. I live in Sapulpa. It's been so warm this year that I thought it might be ok to go ahead. What do you think?

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I hope that it is ok, I did mine this week. It is such a crazy year. They aren't budding out yet, but my Rose of Sharon and Crabapples are. usually the crapes would not bud out till much later, but this year has not been usual. LOL

    Bookmark   February 25, 2012 at 3:02PM
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I follow a blog on Southern Living's website by Steve Bender, and he just posted about pruning crepes saying that now is a good time to do it. I linked to the blog post below, partially because there's a link at the bottom of the page to another blog post describing the correct way to prune a crepe myrtle, but mostly because he's running a contest right now where people submit pictures of badly pruned crepe myrtles. The winners get a prize!

Here is a link that might be useful: The Grumpy Gardener

    Bookmark   February 25, 2012 at 3:08PM
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Thanks guys, I think I will go for it.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2012 at 3:10PM
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Heather - I knew we must be KINDRED souls. I too follow the Grumpy Gardener and honestly, Southern Living mag is my "guilty pleasure"! Thanks for the heads up. This last week has been crazy and I missed that post on his blog.

And thanks to Julie717 for this reminder. I too, need to go out and trim...but be careful not to commit "crepe murder". hehe!

    Bookmark   February 25, 2012 at 10:33PM
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