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Starting a Crape Myrtle from a Cutting

Category Cuttings
Crape myrtles can successfully be started from both hard and soft wood cuttings. This is a guide about starting a crape myrtle from a cutting.
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By 0 found this helpful
August 21, 2008

Question:

Can you root crape myrtle suckers? I have two shoots coming out of a whip I planted this past winter that may be suckers, and I was wondering if I should try to root them. Also, what is the best way to remove them from the tree? I've read that tearing them from the trunk is the best way, but do not want to damage the tree.
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Hardiness Zone: 9a

Abigail from Orlando, FL

Answer:

Abigail,

Yes. Crepe myrtles are easily propagated from semi-hardwood cuttings or young suckers. There is no need to tear them from the tree, though, that's generally a technique reserved for folks trying to eliminate suckers, as it is thought to limit their chances of re-sprouting.

Summer is a great time for rooting cuttings. Young, semi-hardwood suckers work best. Remove them cleanly from the base of the parent plant, leaving three to four nodes per cutting and several leaves. Dip the cut ends into some rooting hormone and insert the cuttings several inches deep into a pot filled with a 50/50 mix of sand and peat or a similar type of lightweight mix. The cuttings should be kept moist for the next three to four weeks while they develop roots. I would recommend placing the pots in the shade, misting them regularly, and adding a few inches of mulch around the base of the cuttings to help conserve moisture.

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If you prefer to root the cuttings directly in the ground, prepare your cutting beds (preferably in the shade) by loosening up the soil to a depth of 10 to 12 inches, and mixing in a bit of well-rotted compost or peat moss into the soil. Dip the cuttings in rooting hormone and insert them into the soil in the same way you would if you were using pots.

After four to five weeks (maybe even sooner), the cuttings should have developed sufficient roots and can be transplanted to a permanent location in the garden. You can test the cuttings for roots by pulling on them gently. If you feel a bit of resistance, it is probably the result of roots.

Good luck!

Ellen

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By guest (Guest Post)
June 13, 20080 found this helpful
Top Comment

I never tried to actively root crepe myrtles but I've been successful in replanting the 'volunteer' shoots that come up around the shrub. I'm in zone 7 and there always seems to be plenty of extras.

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By 0 found this helpful
February 15, 2011

Where can I find diagrqms or pictures of crape myrtle hardwood cuttings? Please.

Hardiness Zone: 8a

By Jeanne from Decatur, GA

Answers

February 19, 20111 found this helpful
Best Answer

These links will walk you through the steps:

http://www.grow … tep-by-step.html

http://www.gard … myrtle-trees.htm

http://www.grow … by-cuttings.html

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July 23, 20090 found this helpful
By Ellen Brown

Question:

I have a crepe myrtle. I am moving and wanted to get a start of the tree. I am wondering when is a good time to take a cutting?
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Hardiness Zone: 8a

Thanks,
Rita from Dallas, TX

Answer:

Rita,

Crepe myrtle trees can be propagated by both hardwood or softwood cuttings.

Hardwood cuttings from dormant plants root easily in the winter, especially with a bit help from some rooting hormone. They can be taken in December.

Softwood cuttings root easily in the summer (May). I would recommend taking several cuttings in the event that some fail. If you end up getting several cuttings to root, you can always give them away to your new neighbors.

Take 4-inch long cuttings, each with a bud 1/4 of an inch from the top end. They should be about as thick as a pencil.

Dip the bottom of each cutting into a rooting hormone and insert the cuttings into a pot filled with a moist lightweight potting soil or soil-less mix.

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The cuttings should be kept humid and moist (not wet) until they have developed several sets of leaves. This can be accomplished by placing the top half of a 2-liter bottle over the pots.

If things start to get too moist, just remove the covering for a few minutes to allow them some air. Keep the cuttings in a warm, bright location, but out of direct sunlight.

Good luck with your move!
Ellen

More Answers

Starting a Crepe Myrtle from a Cutting

I have been rooting crepe myrtles for 9 years and they are so easy to propagate. I have rooted, planted and given away in excess of 100 crepes. Trust me it's easy.

The following information is from University of Georgia Cooperative Extension.

Crape myrtle is easily propagated from semi-hardwood cuttings taken during the growing season. June, July and August are excellent times to root cuttings. Take cuttings from new growth of the season, leaving three to four nodes per cutting and several leaves. Rooting hormone is generally not necessary, and cuttings should root in three to four weeks. Place cuttings in a well-drained rooting medium in a shaded area and keep them moist by enclosing them in a clear plastic bag.

Cuttings also can be placed in prepared outdoor rooting beds. Thoroughly cultivate the soil to a depth of 10 to 12 inches. Add 4 to 5 inches of organic matter such as peat moss, leaf mold, or pine bark to the surface and thoroughly mix it into the soil.

Place the cuttings approximately 6 inches apart. Insert them one-half their length into the soil. Mulch with 2 to 3 inches of pine straw, leaf mold, or pine bark to conserve moisture. Keep them moist with regular misting. The young rooted plants can be transplanted to their permanent location during the fall and winter.

(09/18/2006)

By TexyLady

Starting a Crepe Myrtle from a Cutting

I also make cuttings from my own purple crepe myrtles. I take semi hard cuttings that are 12 inches with 3 or 4 branches on each cutting, removing all the leaves. I have a glass jar that holds 3 to 5 cuttings that is large with a wide opening. I always keep 3 inches of water in it. By keeping them in the water, I can see the white nodules begin to grow and turn into roots.

I do this with my Confederate Rose, also. I have white ones and the pink, too. It works for me every time. After I see the roots I plant them in pots of potting soil. Here is a pic of a pink Confederate rose of mine. I did this with cuttings from a seven Sisters Rose, also Sherry Hampton. (10/12/2006)

By flor2007

RE: Starting a Crepe Myrtle from a Cutting

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