How To Grow A Crepe Myrtle Tree From A Branch?

This article will focus on how to grow a crepe myrtle tree from a branch and the type of branch to use for this exercise.

Crepe myrtles are beautiful shrubs that can be grown in both the landscape and as a specimen. The most popular form is the tree form. Crepe myrtles have a unique, cascading growth habit which means they tend to develop into several upright branches with multiple sprouts. This can result in a very bushy appearance.

Crepe myrtle trees can grow to heights of 20 feet and can live for decades. Crepe myrtles are known for their beautiful white flowers in spring followed by large red berries in fall. They are very disease resistant and can survive in dry areas as long as they get adequate water.

Crepe myrtles will tolerate a wide range of soil conditions as long as they are well-drained. In fact, crepe myrtles can be planted in many different types of soil without problems. They are very easy to grow and care for.

How To Grow A Crepe Myrtle Tree From A Branch?

What is the root system of a crepe myrtle

Growing a myrtle tree from a branch requires some important considerations that include:

Choosing the right branch

Choose myrtle stems that are about 6-inches (15 cm) long.  Remove the lower leaves so that you are only left with the topmost one or two pairs of leaves.  Plant these cuttings in a blend of peat and river sand or a special cutting soil mix. Keep the soil a little moist until germination happens.

Using the right soil

To grow your myrtle cutting you will need to use a rooting powder mixed in good fertile soil. The roots will grow deeper and faster in good soil than in poor soil.  When the plant begins to grow roots, it’s time to transplant the cutting into a container and place it in a warm room for a week or so until the plant roots are established.

Planting

After your plant has grown a few leaves, it’s time to transplant it into the garden.  Plant it about 12 inches (30 cm) away from the other plants in your garden.  A myrtle needs plenty of room to grow.

After the cutting has been transplanted into the growing location, it is best to keep the soil damp but not wet.  Water the new plant daily for the first three weeks.  The soil should be kept moist at all times, but not soggy.

Keeping the tree well-watered

Give the plant water regularly and keep it well fed. The plant needs to be watered when it is dry.  Watering will also cause the leaves to turn yellow and will eventually kill the plant if not watered.

Feeding the plant

Use a slow-release fertilizer or organic fertilizer at least twice a month.  Be careful with the amount of fertilizer you use.  Too much fertilizer can burn your myrtle plant.

A good fertilizer is a mixture of half-strength chicken manure and half-strength fish emulsion.  This mix will feed the plant well and it will be happy.

You will notice that your new tree needs some extra feeding now and then.  This is because it is growing and developing and is not yet getting enough food to grow as fast as it would if it were planted in its permanent home.  For the first few weeks after planting you will need to give the tree a good feed.

In springtime, when the leaves have developed, you will need to feed again.  After that, you should feed every two months or so with a fertilizer solution.  Watering and pruning.

Prune out the dead leaves

The tree should look healthy.  You should be able to see the branches growing from the trunk.  The branches should be strong.  They should not be sagging.  The leaves should be shiny and green.

Tips On How To Grow A Crepe Myrtle Tree From A Branch

To grow a healthy crepe myrtle tree from a branch successfully, follow these tips:

  • Ensure the cutting gets enough roots before you transplant it to the growing location. This will ensure that the root system can withstand the impact of being transplanted.
  • Don’t plant the cutting in a pot. Plant the cutting directly into the soil so that it will get enough nutrients and moisture.
  • Select a growing location with adequate sunlight. If the tree does not get enough sunlight, it will likely die.
  • Water the tree regularly. Watering the tree regularly will ensure that the tree gets enough water.

Final Thoughts

Growing your own crepe myrtle tree is one of the most satisfying ways of taking care of your landscape.  However, if you ask gardeners, not many can be able to tell you how to grow a crepe myrtle tree from a branch.  Learning how to grow your own will make it easy for your fellow gardeners as you share this important information.

Read more about How To Grow A Birch Tree From Seed?

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you root a crape myrtle cutting in water?

Yes, you can! But don’t let the name “crape myrtle” fool you. There are many varieties of crape myrtles and some of them are hard to root. You need to be careful when choosing the variety of crape myrtle that you buy. Some varieties have leaves that curl when they grow so much that they would be difficult to work with. Others have small leaves that curl very easily.

Can you dig up and replant crepe myrtles?

Yes, you can! We recommend planting your new crepe myrtle in a container and then transplanting it into your garden once it has reached its full size.

Do crape myrtle seeds need stratification?

Yes, crape myrtle seeds do require stratification before they can germinate. In the fall, place your crape myrtle seed in a paper bag or other plastic bag and keep it in a warm area (70 degrees F) for two weeks. If you have a cold frame, you can plant your crape myrtle seed directly in the ground on March 1st.

What is the root system of a crepe myrtle?

The root system of a crepe myrtle is very deep and extensive. The roots will extend well into the ground and reach up to ten feet deep. This makes the plant very difficult to remove from the ground. Once the plant reaches its full size, it will grow between seven and twelve feet tall. Crepe myrtles are considered semi-evergreen shrubs.