I just received 4 crape myrtles and wondered if they would make it if I planted them now, in the middle of July? Our soil is somewhat hard, and they would be in a full sun area. Do you think I should wait until the fall, or plant them now?
HI! When I lived in Louisiana, my crepe myrtles were in full sun for about 1/2 the day. My soil was like yours. I would plant them (or just plant 2 if you are very worried), & water frequently. I would try to add something to the soil to make it a little lighter (like vermiculite), but my crepe myrtles thrived in the bad soil.
It is very hot for transplanting. The best way to keep the bushes watered as their roots heal from being transplanted is to use a 5 gallon bucket(find them at construction sites). Punch a few holes in the bottom and place one at the base of each bush. Fill it with water and keep it filled all of the time. the plant needs this for a year to take hold.
Just remember that crepe myrtles are one of the latest blooming trees. I pruned one back one January after our huge ice storm and worried about whether it would bloom or not. By July it was blooming. I noticed that mine has just started to bloom and it is in afternoon sun.
There's a garden practice you should know called 'heeling in'. That's where you have a corner of the garden with something like sawdust or woodchips, totally easy to kick open a hole and drop in a plant or tree for a temporary 'parking spot'. Wood products hold water perfectly well, allow a beautiful free root run, and then whenever you can plant it into its permanent place, after digging that monster hole your trees will need. Happy gardenin'!
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