QUESTION: My crepe myrtle isn’t blooming. What’s wrong? I’ve seen others in the neighborhood that are blooming. – Andrea E
ANSWER: There could be many things going on if your crepe myrtle isn’t blooming. Go down this list to see if you can figure out which problem you might be facing.
Our first issues are for crepe myrtles which once bloomed but have recently stopped.
1. Late or Early Pruning
Crepe myrtles shouldn’t be pruned until after they’ve finished blooming. However, don’t drag your feet once this occurs. You don’t want to accidentally remove new wood and cause a negative impact on future blooms because you pruned too late in the season.
Yet, you don’t want to prune too early when the bloom cycle has already begun. Be patient with crepe myrtles as they’re late bloomers, but once the show has ended, get the pruning out of the way to mark this potential issue off your list.
2. Not Enough Room
When a crepe myrtle reaches a certain age, it may become overcrowded with too many branches. When this occurs, this decreases both airflow and sunlight.
Therefore, it’s important to prune the dead inner branches away to allow these things to increase around the plant and encourage blooms.
3. Pests or Diseases
Every plant has enemies in the garden. They come in the form of pests and diseases. Crepe myrtle can develop issues with fungal disease and aphids.
If you see either of these things occurring on your crepe myrtle, begin treatment immediately. The sooner you get rid of the threat, the easier it will be on the plant to bounce back and start blooming again.
4. Needs Nutrition
If your crepe myrtle once bloomed and has since stopped, the soil might be depleted of vital nutrients.
Test your soil to make sure the phosphorus isn’t too low and the nitrogen isn’t too high. Both of these issues can cause a decrease in blooms on your plant.
5. Not Enough Rain
Every area goes through a drought from time to time. If this has recently occurred in your area, it could be the cause for the decrease in blooms.
You can supply water by hand to ensure your plant gets what it needs. Be patient as this can make the crepe myrtle bloom even later.
6. The Temperatures Dipped
If you live in the right climate to grow crepe myrtle, but the temperatures dipped, it could cause a decrease in blooms as well.
When a plant doesn’t have the growing conditions it needs to thrive, it can have a negative impact on blooms.
If your crepe myrtle has never been one to put on a show of blooms, you could have a few other issues to consider:
7. You Planted in the Wrong Place
Crepe myrtles are sun loving plants. Therefore, it’s important that they grow in places where they receive six or more hours of light per day.
If you accidentally planted your crepe myrtle where it doesn’t receive adequate sunlight, it might be time to transplant to see an increase in blooms.
8. You Planted the Wrong Variety
The final issue that could cause a decrease in blooms is that you planted the wrong type of crepe myrtle. Some varieties of this plant bloom heavily.
Yet, there are other varieties which don’t bloom quite as much. Do your research prior to planting your selected variety of crepe myrtle to ensure it blooms as much as you desire.
These are a few reasons why your crepe myrtle may not be blooming. Go down the list and see if you can pick out the issue in your situation.
Hopefully, these ideas will help you correct what ails your plant. Crepe myrtle is gorgeous, and we want yours to meet its full potential to provide beauty and enjoyment for many years.