I have two approximately 4 year old Catawba Crepe Myrtles (approx. 5' tall)...

Asked June 23, 2014, 10:43 AM EDT

I have two approximately 4 year old Catawba Crepe Myrtles (approx. 5' tall) that I transplanted in late fall of 2013, following their strong growing season. I was able to salvage all of the larger root bases, missing only very tiny stringers. They transplanted more like bare root plants, as the soil fell away easily. This soil was taken with them to the transplant site and mixed in with the soil from the new locations (same yard). I watered regularly over the next two-three weeks. The leaves all fell over the winter, as expected. As of today, they still look dead as door nails. I have scratch tested from top to bottom and the area just under the bark is bright green all the way. Any smaller branches which did not show this green life have been trimmed away. Are these trees really still living? Are they working on reestablishing their root base, hence to outward signs of life? Should I prune them at some point (Fall, perhaps) or am I best to leave them be? Thank you in advance for any advice!

Charles County Maryland trees and shrubs crape myrtles

1 Response

Many crape myrtles were affected by our cold winter. If you see green tissue, the root system is still viable. It is up to you if you want to be patient and wait for growth but do not prune in the fall. Or remove and replant now.