Crape Myrtle - Knowledgebase Question

El Dorado Hills, Ca
Avatar for Annaoff35
Question by Annaoff35
February 7, 2011
I have a Crape Myrtle Shrub that is about 7 years old. The last 2 years it appears to have some kind of curly leaf that comes out shortly after the new leaves arrive. What is it and what should I spray it with? Thank you.

Answer from NGA
February 7, 2011
The most common cause of leaf curl with crape myrtles is the feeding from aphids. These little pests suck the fluids from the leaf tissues which results in the leaves curling and eventually turning yellow. To stop the damage you'll need to control the aphids. You can often control aphid populations early in the spring when your crape myrtle leaves are young and tender by simply hosing the plant off with a strong stream of water every 2-3 days. Be sure to spray the undersides of the leaves, as well. You'll dislodge the insect pests and eventually discourage them. Or, if the problem is severe you can spray with an insecticidal soap. Be sure to check your crape myrtle frequently for signs of the insect pests so you can get the upper hand before they do too much damage. Good luck with your crape myrtle!

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