The crape myrtles are beginning to bloom in the Blanco and surrounding area. Many of the trees are old. Think about the crape myrtles in the courthouse lawn and the red ones beside the City Hall. I have lived in Blanco since ‘79 and they were large trees at that time. Many crape myrtles were planted along Hwy 281 in the 1950s.
Crape myrtles are not native to Texas but they are adapted. The first crape myrtles were brought to this country from China.
In 1983, the Good Earth Landscape Company planted the area around the new shopping center on south 281. We planted small red crape myrtles in the parking area. At that time the Fire Bird was the brightest red that could be found. Since then, there are many colors and sizes. The crape myrtle is a very tough tree. For instance, we planted the trees and shrubs in May of ‘83; we planted, fed and watered the plants for one month and then the care was left with mother nature. They are still blooming and growing.
Last year, LCRA donated 50 trees to Keep Blanco Beautiful; 25 were crape myrtles and 25 were mixed trees. They have been planted in and around Blanco. Many made it through this last year of cold, dry weather and they are beginning to bloom.
Stripping or deadheading the spent blooms allow the plant to bloom again. Regular feeding and watering is needed for more blooms.
In 1997 the Texas legislature designated the crape myrtle as the Texas State Shrub.
It’s the season to prepare for the fall gardening season. Many of the cool season transplants are now in the nurseries. You may start your own seed flats of broccoli, cauliflower, Chinese cabbage and other cool season transplants.
Water and feed nut and fruit trees to fill out nut kernels and to have juicy fruit. Water from beyond the drip line to one-half the distance to the trunk.