Powdery mildew on crepe myrtle

Asked August 30, 2015, 4:54 PM EDT

How can I treat our crepe myrtle with powdery mildew. I want to do something now. Also, I need a treatment that will not harm the bees and birds. The tree is about 6feet tall, in an open, sunny location. It is about 8 years old.

Carroll County Maryland

1 Response

See our website for photos and more information on powdery mildew http://extension.umd.edu/hgic/powdery-mildew-trees-and-shrubs

This fungal disease is usually not lethal to crape myrtles but is certainly not attractive. Control begins by selecting powdery mildew resistant varieties. Place susceptible plants where there is adequate sunlight and good air circulation to reduce humidity levels. Allow proper plant spacing for the same reasons. Pruning for better air circulation also may help.

If severe, you can spray as soon as you notice the mildew next season. Check the label registration on fungicides and horticultural oil products for powdery mildew control listings. However, this disease will not kill the plant and you do not have to spray.
Next season you will have to decide if you want to spray. Fungicide treatments can help to protect new or un-infected foliage they are not curatives. mh