Botanical name: Lagerstroemia
Botanical name: Lagerstroemia
The crape myrtles (Lagerstroemia) are a group of flowering evergreen shrubs and trees, most of which are tropical or sub-tropical. Crape myrtles respond well to trimming, bear large and beautiful clusters of flowers, and are today used extensively in landscaping. Some crape myrtles, such as the Guava Crape Myrtle (L. calyculata) can reach large-tree sizes and are occasionally harvested for their timber, although it is of fairly low value.
Species of Crape myrtles
Crepe myrtle 'Comanche'
Crepe myrtle 'Comanche' is the coral pink-flowered hybrid of L. indica and L. fauriei. This hybrid is much shorter than its parent plants, only reaching a height of 4.5 m instead of 9 to 12 m. The hybrids of L. indica and L. fauriei are named after Native American tribes, which explains why this cultivar is named after the Comanche.
Crape myrtles 'Early Bird White'
Crape myrtles 'Early Bird White' is a small tree with gray bark that exfoliates to reveal beige tones. It blooms with a show of light pink flowers that fade to white. This is a Lagerstroemia cultivar, in the Early Bird™ series from the Southern Living Plant Collection, named for its early blooming season that starts in late spring. Makes a lovely informal hedge or specimen plant.
Crepe myrtle 'Coral Magic'
A cultivar of Crepe myrtle named for its coloring, crepe myrtle 'Coral Magic' produces magnificent sprays of crinkly, salmon-colored flowers. Likewise, the new leaves are tinted with red before later turning dark green, making for an explosion of color in early summer (when the flowers emerge).
Crepe myrtle 'Pink Velour'
Crepe myrtle 'Pink Velour' is a plant cultivated from Crepe myrtle. The name is a nod to the bright pink blooms. This cultivar's blooming period is what sets it apart from its parent plant and other species in the family. Crepe myrtle 'Pink Velour' blooms over a longer period of time and produces more flowers.
Crape myrtles are chiefly known for their colorful and long-lasting flowers which occur in summer. Most species of Lagerstroemia have sinewy, fluted stems and branches with a mottled appearance that arises from having bark that sheds throughout the year. The leaves are opposite and simple, with entire margins, and vary from 5–20 cm (2–8 in). While all species are woody in nature, they can range in height from over 30 m (100 ft) to under 30 cm (1 ft); most, however, are small to medium multiple-trunked trees and shrubs. The leaves of temperate species provide autumn color. Flowers are borne in summer and autumn in panicles of crinkled flowers with a crêpe-like texture. Colors vary from deep purple to red to white, with almost every shade in between. Although no blue-flowered varieties exist, the flowers trend toward the blue end of the spectrum with no orange or yellow except in stamens and pistils. The fruit is a capsule, green and succulent at first, then ripening to dark brown or black dryness. It splits along six or seven lines, producing teeth much like those of the calyx, and releases numerous, small, winged seeds. In their respective climates, both subtropical and tropical species are common in domestic and commercial landscapes. The timber of some species has been used to manufacture bridges, furniture, and railway sleepers, but in Vietnam's Cát Tiên National Park, the dominant stands of Lagerstroemia calyculata in secondary forest are thought to have survived (after episodes of logging) due to the low quality of wood. Lagerstroemia species are used as food plants by the larvae of some Lepidoptera (moth and butterfly) species including Endoclita malabaricus. The leaves of L. parviflora are fed on by the Antheraea paphia moth which produces the tassar silk, a form of wild silk of commercial importance in India.
Crape myrtles 'Delta Jazz'
The deep burgundy of the crape myrtles 'Delta Jazz' foliage contrasts beautifully with the flushing pink of the flowers clustered at the tips of each branch. Maintaining this eye-catching, "jazzy" color even in the heat of summer, the crape myrtles 'Delta Jazz' has oval leaves that change to a fitting orange for the fall.
Taiwan Crepe Myrtle
Taiwan Crepe Myrtle is a small tree or a large shrub and one of the few deciduous trees growing in the evergreen forest belt in Taiwan. It is often cultivated for its ornamental features, primarily its flaking, grayish bark that leaves reddish patches. In summer, the tree produces delicate flowers that emit a subtle fragrance.
Pride of India
Pride of India (*Lagerstroemia speciosa*) is a small to medium-sized tree that can grow up to 20 m tall with smooth, flaky bark. Pride of India is native to tropical southern Asia. This species is also known as the giant crepe-myrtle, Queen's crepe-myrtle, and the banana plant.
Crepe myrtle 'Lipan'
Crepe myrtle 'Lipan' has stunning purple and white flowers whose colors have brushstroke color contrasts not present in the pink-white flowers of the parent Crepe myrtle plant. It is a trademarked cultivar of the Indian Summer range of Crepe myrtles, named "Lipan" after a Texas-native group of Native Americans. It is well-sized to show off its unusually profuse flowers in ornamental gardens.
Crepe myrtle 'Purple Magic'
Crepe myrtle 'Purple Magic' is a compact, deciduous tree or shrub offering clusters of titular purple blooms starting in early summer. The crinkly shapes are set off by the red-tinted leaves that mature to a glossy deep green. This is a cultivar of the crepe myrtle, and makes an attractive hedge or screen in a garden.
Crepe myrtle 'Red Rocket'
Developed for disease and pest resistance, the crepe myrtle 'Red Rocket' has no notable insect, disease, or plant issues. Classified in the 16th century, the crepe myrtle 'Red Rocket''s name developed from its bunched red flowers along its shaft. Its parentage is unknown. In addition to its disease resistance, gardeners love the crepe myrtle 'Red Rocket''s fast-growing blossoms of cherry-red blooms that rebloom across its long season.
Crape myrtles 'Cherry Dazzle'
A small, round, deciduous crape myrtle shrub cultivar boasting an abundance of cherry-red flowering clusters, crape myrtles 'Cherry Dazzle' is a top choice for small gardens and balcony or patio container gardens. It is named Crape myrtles'Cherry Dazzle' derived from the color of it's papery, crepe-like flower head and myrtle (green) foliage and bark.
Crepe myrtle 'Ebony Flame'
Crepe myrtle 'Ebony Flame' is named for the dramatic coloration of its fiery red flower clusters contrasted against ebony leaves. Bred from the crepe myrtle family, which originated in Asia, this small tree blooms in the summer and is popular for its eye-catching ornamental value with its unique combination of striking red-and-black colors.
Crape myrtles 'Delta Moonlight'
With pure, white blossoms shining bright in the moonlight, it's not a wonder crape myrtles 'Delta Moonlight' was given this cultivar name. Standing out from the rest in looks but not height, crape myrtles 'Delta Moonlight' is a semi-dwarf shrub that is much smaller than its ancestral plant, the Crape myrtle. What the gardeners love most about crape myrtles 'Delta Moonlight' is the striking contrast between its bright blooms and dark purple foliage.
Crepe myrtle 'Dynamite'
Crepe myrtle 'Dynamite' is named for the explosion of red color from its summer flowers. Bred in 1997 from the crepe myrtle tree, crepe myrtle 'Dynamite' is the first crepe myrtle with red flowers. The petals are crinkly like crepe paper, and the large blooms provide a striking ornamental appeal.
Crepe myrtle 'Berry Dazzle'
A cultivar of the popular ornamental tree, Crepe myrtle, crepe myrtle 'Berry Dazzle' has been bred to be a dwarf version of its parent plant, and thus suitable for small gardens and container growth. It was also bred to be cold-tolerant and resistant to powdery mildew.
Crepe myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica) is a highly ornamental small tropical tree or shrub, often multi-stemmed. It is native to India, Southeastern Asia, and Japan, and features a characteristic vase-shaped crown and beautifully-ruffled pink blooms that can last from early summer to autumn. It is also a popular nesting shrub for small birds.