For years, I’ve wanted to plant a crape myrtle tree at the corner of my house to create some color in my front yard. Crape Myrtle trees are a staple of the Southern garden, because, not only are they a are drought resistant tree, they love the sunshine and will grow in almost any type of soil. They line the streets in my city, and are chosen for their wide variety of colors.
Purples, pinks, burgundy, and white offer a wide range of options when planted in your garden. My house is a beige color, and I was hoping to purchase one of the dark burgundy varieties. I’m not a fan of white or purple flowers or bushes.
While at a flea market a few weeks ago, I came across a crape myrtle bush that had been re-potted in this bucket. It was only $2.50 so what could I loose. This one is going to be a surprise tree.
It’s not labeled as to what color it is, and the man selling it didn’t know. I’m not sure I want to plant it near the house since I’m not sure it will turn out to be a color that I like. I think it will find a place near the garden this spring. Until then, I plan to mulch around it thickly, and put it in a protected place from the wind and cold.
How to grow your crape myrtle tree.
- Choose a sunny spot, and clear of weeds and rocks.
- Dig a hole that is as deep as the height of the root ball, and at least twice as wide. Place it in the hole at the same depth it was in your container.
- Do not bury the crown. (The area where the trunk meets the root).
- Backfill with soil and water immediately. The soil may settle around the tree, so if needed, add more soil.
- Mulch around the tree to help protect and insulate the roots, as well as to keep weeds at bay. In the hot, dry summer months, it will also help retain moisture.
- After planting, you will need to water it once every week for a few months. After the roots become established, you need to water during dry weather, and especially when the tree is blooming.
- Beginning in the spring, through August, you can feed with a well balanced, general fertilizer according to directions. Feed around the circumference of the planting hole, and be careful to not get it on the leaves or flowers. Water generously after fertilizing.
- The first growing season requires little attention other than watering.