Oily black stuff on Crape Myrtle

ccabal(7)July 31, 2012


I have a couple of pink Crape Myrtle trees, and their leaves have this black oily film on them, and the branches also have this, plus have white spots too. I've had this before, last year too. Is this a big deal?

I have a white crape myrtle nearby that doesnt have this problem. It has grown much larger than these 2 smaller trees. Anyone seen this before?

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roselee z8b S.W. Texas

It's 'black sooty mold' caused by mold growing on the 'honey dew' secreted by aphids. Spraying with insecticidal soap is recommended.

The white spots are most likely powdery mildew which some varieties of crape myrtles are subject to mostly in the spring, especially if there is not good air circulation and they are not in full sun. Sometimes trimming out some of the interior foliage will help, plus you can spray them with an anti fungal solution.

Good luck. Crape myrtles are beautiful trees and are mostly carefree. Incidentally I find using the Gilmour 362 professional hose end sprayer to be the most convenient way to spray. Amazon.com carries it.

Here is a link that might be useful: Google search results for sooty mold on crape myrtles ...

    Bookmark   July 31, 2012 at 8:28AM
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The white things if they are on the branches might actually be an insect known as scale. CM's are also susceptible to that.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2012 at 10:55AM
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ordered one of the sprayers, thanks! I have scale on the citrus aarrrggghhh!
Tally HO!

    Bookmark   August 5, 2012 at 12:32PM
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