Overgrown Crepe Myrtle

Filed Under: Pruning · Keywords: overgrown, myrtle, pruning · 1981 Views
We just bought a home with two very overgrown crepe myrtles at the curb on either side of the front walk. I'm guessing they are about 30-35' feet tall and the canopies are touching at the top. I want to prune them back but I have no idea how high to prune them.

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Answer #1 · Maple Tree's Answer · Hi Tiffani-Unfortunately these trees were not pruned properly when young in order to develop a nice dense canopy. Fortunately the crape myrtles accept hard pruning well when necessary to develop a nice canopy and recover quickly. When pruning the stems back a couple of new stems with develop just below the cut that was made. I too purchased a home with a large variety crape myrtle that was planted in the wrong location. I actually had no choice but to cut the trunks back to within 6 foot of the ground. New shoots grew from the cuts so that each year I have been able to prune back new growth to develop a nice canopy. I uploaded a picture of your trees with a red line drawn where I would cut the stems back too. In the spring new growth with develop quickly. I noted a link below also of another members question similar to yours with an answer and pictures also as to where these trees needed to be cut back to also. I noted a link below to an article that will help you with information and pictures on how to prune your trees the next couple of years. Just click on the links below to go directly to the article and previously asked question. I believe from looking at the pictures this hard pruning should still allow enough room for people to walk beneath the lower limbs without any problems. Unfortunately the two trees were planted fairly close to one another but some pruning each year can keep them from damaging each other. The only alternative would be to replace them with new trees or try and transplant them farther apart. Any pruning is best done in late winter or early spring after any freezing temperaturea are expected.



Please don't hesitate to ask any other questions you may have.

I also uploaded below a few pictures of the drastic pruning I had to do to reduce the size of my tree. Fortunately you will not need to cut your trees back this far. The second picture will show you how quickly the crape myrtles recover. The picture of the nice new canopy growth was only taken a few months after the first picture showing new grow developing.


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Tiffani Jedlicka

Tiffani Jedlicka · Gardenality Seed · Zone 8A · 10° to 15° F
Thank you for all the information! I will post some follow-up photos next month after pruning!

6 years ago ·
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Maple Tree

Maple Tree · Gardenality Genius · Zone 10A · 30° to 35° F
You're very welcome. Please let me know if you have any other questions.

6 years ago ·
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