The Q&A Archives: Crape myrtle

Question: I plante a 4ft. crape myrtle last Sept. with l on going loving care, now the branches and trunk are brown and brittle, but their is new growth at the base of the trunk. Do I remove the brown and dead part of the plant? If so, how much? Help! Thanks

Answer: Crape Myrtle can die down to ground level in cold winter regions but it's obvious the roots of yours have survived and are sending up new growth. I would prune off all the dead parts. Scrape away the bark with your fingernail before cutting off anything you think is dead. If there is green tissue beneath the bark, it is alive and there is some hope it will sprout new leaves. If the tissue beneath the bark is brown, it's dead and you can prune it away. Good luck with your crape myrtle!

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