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Old 07-05-2013, 06:46 PM
 
Location: Aiken, South Carolina, US of A
1,775 posts, read 4,041,307 times
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PepperJack,
In 2009 I bought an unknown crape myrtle skinny bark and dry as anything at Home
Depot, I think it was Feb or March, and I planted it on the front lawn.
Now, let me tell you, the soil was horrible. I didn't even have grass yet.
It didn't grow much and didn't bloom, so I dug it up and low and behold
there were sassafras roots attacking it, and no sassafras around. THey had cut
down trees I guess and left the roots. The roots smelled like sassafras.
Then I replanted the small crape myrtle tree and mulched real good and watered
like crazy because it was close to 100 degrees in August.
My husband couldn't believe the amount of roots I dug up.
That was August, 2009 for unknown crape myrtle now see it....




the bark is gorgeous look
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Old 06-07-2014, 06:05 PM
 
1 posts, read 2,501 times
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I planted a Delta Jazz last year. It froze over winter and died back to the roots. The new resprouting is about 8-10" . Do I prune this new growth or just let the whole thing grow for a few seasons?
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Old 06-08-2014, 08:36 AM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,498 posts, read 45,482,905 times
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You will need all leaves you have to feed the plant so I would not prune anything until you get some more growth. However it sounds like you have lost the central trunk(s) and you might end up with a CM shrub instead of a tree. Have you already cut down everything above the new sprouting? Sometimes plants and especially CM surprise us rather late in the season.
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Old 06-28-2015, 05:25 PM
 
1 posts, read 1,959 times
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I received my crape myrtle from Arbour day foundation they came 2 feet tall and to my disappointment they arrived pruned. I stuck them in the ground anyway. What's gonna happen if they are pruned. Little horrified when I opened the bag becuz all I hear is do not prune.=(
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Old 06-29-2015, 09:36 AM
 
Location: Land of Free Johnson-Weld-2016
6,473 posts, read 14,346,568 times
Reputation: 6451
Quote:
Originally Posted by cittic10 View Post
What butterfly4u said. It can promote girdled roots.
Plus, in clay soil it creates a bathtub effect where water sits in the planting hole rather than drain out.
That said, 1/4 would not a big deal at all had it been any other type of soil but if there is fertilizer in the soil (which Miracle Die soil often does), that could potentially damage the roots. As for people gardening in your area for decades... it certainly is a decades-old practice but as cultural practices change as studies and findings are published, you can either change your practices or continue doing what you've always done. Too many people do the latter.

As for your original question, which I neglected to answer, the newer cultivars often have conflicting growth rates posted online because people just don't really know. It takes decades to get a consensus on these things. The first 2-3 years (dep. on size) are going to be spent growing mostly underground, getting established.
Isn't it weird how the wisdom about planting trees changes? When I first started planting trees, I did not amend the soil. Then I read that you were supposed to amend the soil, so I did. But now some (maybe even most) professionals are saying that amending the soil can be bad.


I think the best idea is probably to plant trees that are suited for the soil you have, and to not amend. But one amendment I've started using is mycorrhizal funghi. This is because it seems that the previous owners used chemicals in my yard, and there were a lot of weeds like garlic mustard, which kill this funghi which is very helpful to native plants.

When I planted perennials this year, I've been adding some shrub soil and mixing it in with the existing dirt and the funghi in areas that are particularly crappy. But I must say, that I've planted many trees without amending the soil at all, and they're doing fine.
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Old 06-30-2015, 07:32 AM
 
Location: Aiken, South Carolina, US of A
1,775 posts, read 4,041,307 times
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kinky,
Where do you buy mycorrhizal funghi?
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Old 06-30-2015, 02:35 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,498 posts, read 45,482,905 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kinkytoes View Post
Isn't it weird how the wisdom about planting trees changes? When I first started planting trees, I did not amend the soil. Then I read that you were supposed to amend the soil, so I did. But now some (maybe even most) professionals are saying that amending the soil can be bad.


I think the best idea is probably to plant trees that are suited for the soil you have, and to not amend. But one amendment I've started using is mycorrhizal funghi. This is because it seems that the previous owners used chemicals in my yard, and there were a lot of weeds like garlic mustard, which kill this funghi which is very helpful to native plants.

When I planted perennials this year, I've been adding some shrub soil and mixing it in with the existing dirt and the funghi in areas that are particularly crappy. But I must say, that I've planted many trees without amending the soil at all, and they're doing fine.
I got my Horticulture and Landscape Design Degree from Oklahoma State University in 1979. Part of my training involved digging up trees and shrubs in the trail fields which had been planted 2-3 years prior using typical "good ol boy" amendments (It's been done this way forever), special mixes of amendments and nothing but native soil. Believe me it was hot as hades and horrible clay soil.

We had to take detailed notes about length of roots, direction of growth of roots as well as top growth. My teacher was a retired Extension Agent who had been on the job for 30 years. His eyes almost popped out of his head when he saw that, contrary to public thought, the plants in unamended soil were more vigorous and healthy in every way. Their growth rate was faster as well. My class also planted with different or no amendments and subsequent classes dug up ours to take notes on growth. Same thing happened.

Now for annual and perennial beds amendments are in order, especially in clay soil. I like Nature's Helper which is ground up pine bark. I also use mushroom compost and composted manure- depending which is available and sometimes all of it together.
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Old 07-01-2015, 05:52 PM
 
Location: Phoenix, AZ
2,653 posts, read 2,046,998 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TXboomerang View Post
I just went a little crape myrtle crazy at our house because our backyard was really bland and boring, so I planted 4 crape myrtles to spice it up a bit. I planted one close to the house near our bedroom window. It is the newer "Delta Jazz" cultivar that is supposed to stay small, around 6-8 feet.

In the corners where our fence meets our neighbor's fences on either side, and in one other spot that I would like some privacy and a screening effect, I planted 3 "Centennial Spirit" crape myrtles. These are the 3 that I am most eager to see grow. They are each around 30-36 inches tall right now. I dug out a hole a little over double the size of the containers they came in and mixed some of the native dirt/clay with compost and Miracle Grow brand garden soil for trees and shrubs. Filled it back in around the trees and put about 2-3 inches of mulch on top of the soil. They are close to a 6 foot wooden fence, but not too close, and they should get at least 7-8 hours of sun each day, closer to 9 once the days are longer, and when they get a little taller than the fence they will get full sun all day.

I bought the trees at a local Lowe's, actually got them the day they came in off the truck from the nursery. They were trained to only 1 or 2 trunks, which I really like, and almost all of the growth on it is vertical.

Anyone have any experience with this cultivar and how fast it grows if maintained properly? I would like them to reach 8-10 feet tomorrow, or I guess I by the weekend would do.
Any tricks to speed them up in a healthy manner? Or do I have to tie myself to my patio chair and be patient?
Centennial Spirit is an excellent variety. I give you credit for choosing it. I bought one by mail order.
The variety was bred in Oklahoma, from what I remember.

Mine is basically sitting still at the moment, probably because it's 110 degrees every day. But I'm sure it will grow once it gets a little nicer outside.
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Old 08-20-2016, 03:28 PM
 
27 posts, read 12,503 times
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I lived in a townhome community neighborhood in Las Vegas. In our front yard was a 100 plus mondale pine tree....grown because they are fast growing. The landscapers planted it in fertilizer, etc. Well...about 8 years later, the tree looked very unhealthy. Soon, it fell ...on our house and cars! What happened is the root ball never spread because it was all planted in the new soil and the root system never had a chance to spread into the surrounding clay soil - WHICH had a lot of rocks in it....rocky, clay soil! So you always have to be patient with trees and pay attention to the new news out there by arborists, etc. This is when I learned about planting trees, and did me well when I moved out to my California ranch!
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Old 08-20-2016, 04:49 PM
 
Location: Chapel Hill, N.C.
36,498 posts, read 45,482,905 times
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which is exactly why horticulturists now recommend not amending the soil when planting trees and shrubs. The roots go round and round in rich soil and don't venture out.
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