The Q&A Archives: Pruning Dwarf Crape Myrtle

Question: I have just purchased a "lagerstroemia indica." Can this dwarf crape myrtle be pruned into a tree, and if so then how tall?

Answer: Lagerstroemia indica is native to China. The dwarf shrubby forms can be pruned into a tree shape and will reach 6-20 feet tall. To prune to a multi-stemed tree, prune out ends of branches until the plant has a vase shape. Lagerstroemia blooms on new wood so plan on removing some growth of each branch by cutting back 1 to 1 1/2 feet. Keep the plant looking attractive by removing twiggy growth and any old branches that no longer bear leaves or flowers. Pruning is best done in the dormant season for a show of blossoms in July, August, and September.

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