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As a comment about Vitex (Vitex agnus-castus 'Shoal Creek'), dave wrote:

If I had a top 10 list of my favorite plants that I can't live without, this one is definitely on that list, and high up on the list at that.

It's hardy.
Fast growing.
Tolerant of nearly any soil.
Handles drought and heat without complaint.
Blooms repeatedly all summer long (if properly deadheaded).
If this weren't enough, it has highly fragrant blooms!
The blue color is striking in the landscape.
Astoundingly, it can handle poor drainage, too.
It's perfect for those hot, dry and difficult areas of your yard.

All this, plus the plant attracts beneficial insects, especially bees and butterflies. It's a bee magnet, which is a good thing.

To encourage repeated growth, deadhead the shrub. After it's done blooming it will start making little peppercorn sized seeds. Cut those all off and it'll prompt the plant to rebloom again. You can repeat this all summer long.

The plant responds well to heavy pruning. In fact, it is encouraged to prune it back deeply in order to promote a new flush of growth. Think "Crepe Murder" here. It's actually a good thing for this particular kind of plant.

Love love love it! Don't delay, act now! Add this amazing plant to your southern garden!
Name: Cheryl
Kingwood, Texas (Zone 9a)
Region: Texas Greenhouse Composter Plant Identifier Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Amaryllis
Plumerias Ponds Foliage Fan Enjoys or suffers hot summers Tropicals Garden Ideas: Master Level
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ShadyGreenThumb
Jul 13, 2013 10:45 PM CST
Been looking for a sunny spot in our yard to plant one. IDK why Crepe Myrtles are so popular and the vitex is so ignored? Their blue color is so striking!
Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love Truly, Laugh
uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you Smile.
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Jul 14, 2013 7:20 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I agree But the Vitexes take a little more maintenance than crepe myrtles. Vitex wants to be deadheaded in order to keep blooming, where CM's can be mostly completely ignored and they'll still bloom all summer. That's the only advantage to CMs that I can think of.

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