Crepe Myrtle Placement

queenoftheforest(7)June 29, 2014

I know that Crepe Myrtles need full sun... But do they need sun ALL day and afternoon, or is it good for them to have afternoon shade? Let's say they get 7 hours of sun... Is that enough for them to bloom well? I have plenty of space to plant one out in the open, but here is one spot I'd really like to have one right in front of my house, with the hedge plants. So it would be close to the house and only starts to get a bit of shade there at 3pm... Full sun until then. Also, besides the sun exposure issue, would a couple of feet away from the foundation of the house be ok?

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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Seven hours of full sun is plenty, but two feet away from the house is entirely insufficient.

To determine how much room you need, research the expected mature size (height and canopy spread) of your chosen variety. To place your tree, divide that canopy width by half then add a couple of feet.

There's nothing uglier in the front of a home than a butchered Crape Myrtle.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2014 at 7:09PM
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dottie_in_charlotte(z7-8 NC)

Indeed, a crape myrtle with its nature of developing multi-trunks and a massive deep root system is never a foundation planting.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2014 at 2:38PM
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I see so many people around here with them planted close to their houses, and I think they look awesome. They don't look pruned to death, or anything.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2014 at 2:57PM
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dottie_in_charlotte(z7-8 NC)

queen, rhizo gave you a very good formula involving some research for you to do.
crapes bloom all the way around and after the rain, the branches weep down further.
If all your blooms are at the front of the plant because it's normal growth pattern is impeded by a house wall and its roots are sharing water with foundation shrubs you're going to FORCE that crape to set stabilizing roots toward your foundation.

Crapes need to be accessible for proper pruning of crossed branches. Amid shrubs, you cannot give the best care to this flowering tree.
And, the feeding materials that a crape uses to promote the best bloom may not be the same as what your hedge shrubs need.

I don't know how many other reasonable, logical ways to dissuade you from planting a crape in and among a foundation border of shrubs.
Yes I do....when you realize your mistake you will have to remove ALL the shrubs in order to dig deep and wide enough to remove the dying crape myrtle.
If you don't dig deep enough, it grows back.

That's why it is frequently used as a road median tree.
When it's run over and broken, it grows back (shorter and wider).

    Bookmark   July 25, 2014 at 8:42PM
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So what if I were to select a smaller variety? Like a 10 ft'er?

    Bookmark   July 26, 2014 at 4:41PM
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FYI, we have a few crape myrtles at the corners of our back patio...about 10ft away from the house...and some branches are still hitting the side of the house. They need plenty of room.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2014 at 2:40PM
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Thanks guys for the info. I ended up planting a "purple cow" crape in the space.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2014 at 1:47PM
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I run along the James River parks area daily. Take a walk around the Church Hill (21st and Franklin) area. There are several awesome restaurants, and an incredible bakery called Proper Pie. Anyways, just about every renovated house in the area has mature, non-dwarf crape myrtles right up front against the building.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2014 at 10:37AM
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