tree trimming time

“How do you spell ‘crate myrtle’?”
“I think it is c-r-e-t-e.”

So went a recent conversation between me and Meg. A few days later, the arrival of Meg’s copy of Southern Living set us both straight. The cover announced an article concerning the proper pruning of “crepe myrtles.” It seems the standard practice of beheading the bushes at chest height is not the best method to ensure beautiful upright blooms.

I spent an hour or so hacking branches from the tree in our front yard trying to make it look like the pictures in the magazine. It looks a little strange compared to the neighbor’s trees (which have been topped, lopped and chopped). I’ll post some pictures soon and there will be a follow-up later this spring when the trees start blooming. If my trees don’t look better than my neighbor’s, then this will be my last time to carefully prune my crepe myrtles.

our crepe myrtleneighbor’s crepe myrtle

Update:Pictures added: 03-18-2007
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3 Responses to tree trimming time

  1. Patrick says:

    I just want to know if you cleared this all with the neighborhood association. I just want to make sure you don’t step on any toes with how your bushes look. I am proud that you did a little research before you hacked away at those ‘dem trees.

  2. Judith says:

    Our Jacaranda trees have bloomed and are now dropping gooey stuff. Is it all right to trim the branches at this time of the year. It’s July 7.


  3. monitorhead says:


    I found the following quote after a quick web search:

    Jacaranda mimosifolia, jacaranda. Stake to produce single, sturdy trunk in youth. Prune to shape. Thin out. Cut out any inner branches affected by dieback in early spring and remove main trunk suckers. Excessive heavy pruning creates heavy sucker growth. Heavy stubbing undesirable. Tree should be trimmed or laced out once a year after flowering period. Remove interior dead branches, wind damage breakage, crossing branches and weak vertical branches. Encourage uniform shape and form.

    Sounds like you can prune the trees back, once they have flowered.

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