Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

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Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Josh S. on Thu Jun 14, 2012 4:45 am

I will post a pic if needed. My basic question is there are two trees next to my house about 4 foot tall and have all characteristics of the crape myrtle tree. It looses it leaves, then branches out in spring like they all do, and has bark like they all do. But no blooms, and I've seen numerous ones in my area that don't bloom either. There is a 1 footer that I want to turn in Bonsai.

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Russell Coker on Thu Jun 14, 2012 1:09 pm



Sometimes seedling crape myrtles can do strange things. I posted one in the bonsai discussion forum (you can find it with the search bar) that was grown from a seedling and has never attempted to bloom. I seriously doubt it ever will. If the trees you're talking about were purchased from a garden center and planted they should bloom eventually. A lot depends on the variety. Four feet tall could be giant for a dwarf variety, but tiny and therefore maybe too young for one of the huge street tree varieties. How old are they, how long have they been there? Are they in too much shade?

Are you a member of the Ft. Walton club? If not you should be and I can give you contact info.

Russell

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  JimLewis on Thu Jun 14, 2012 1:12 pm

A picture would help.

I know of no "crape myrtle" that does not bloom. Some may be too young to bloom. I suppose some culd be growing in environments what would inhibit blooming (but Ft. Walton Beach should not be one of them). Maybe these are too young to bloom. I suppose there could be some growing from seeds of a hybrid plant and they might not be able to flower????????????????

Anyway, if the small one you have your eye on looks like a bonsai candidate, give it a try (assuming you have permission to collect it). Many of us who grow crape myrtle bonsai don't let them bloom often anyway because that have to look so unruly before they will put out flower buds.

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Mitch Thomas on Thu Jun 14, 2012 2:04 pm

Russell
I have one that I picked up at a auction in Mobile or FWB I cant remember. I have had it for about 4/5 yrs. it's in full sun most of the time in the spring and shade in the summer. I keep it well fertilized and it puts out copius amounts of growth each year. Last year I made a commitment not to trim off any foliage. Every thing I have tried has not come even close to making it bloom. It must have been propagated in one way or another, so it must be related to yours!
I am content with it tho, I do appreciate the wonderful exfoliating bark, leaf size, and most of all the colorful autum show. I am thinking of grafting it so it will flower. Do You think that will work?

So in answer to the question, I would have to say yes some do not bloom.

Mitch

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Billy M. Rhodes on Thu Jun 14, 2012 2:17 pm

I have a number of Crape Myrtle, both in ground and in pots. My large plants in the ground have great blooms, I have two small (dwarfs) in the ground that bloom poorly. I have two in pots that I rescued from a Wal Mart hanging basket, I am sure they were in bloom when delivered to Wal Mart, but they have never bloomed for me, I think it is a culture thing and with the proper attention they would again. I have one large Crape Myrtle in a pot that has had a few blooms over the years. If you want blooms let it grow wild and fertilize with a bloom buster (high middle number)

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Mitch Thomas on Thu Jun 14, 2012 4:39 pm

Billy
I have tryed that with no avail.

Thanks Mitch
I'm going to try grafting it.

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  JimLewis on Thu Jun 14, 2012 6:08 pm

Best way to get blooms on a potted crape myrtle that I have found is to let it grow until late spring/early summer. Trim it back to 3-4 nodes, then let it grow. They almost always bloom then, whereas if you just let them grow from spring through summer they are less likely to bloom.

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Jim Lewis - lewisjk@windstream.net - Western NC - People, when Columbus discovered this country, it was plumb full of nuts and berries. And I'm right here to tell you the berries are just about all gone. Uncle Dave Macon, old-time country musician

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Josh S. on Fri Jun 15, 2012 4:41 am

Thanks for all the replies they helped and some good tips, thanks. Tomorrow i'll get a picture in the sunlight. Next time i'll start a plant identification in a different thread this will be my second post so I am new. The trees are wild grown on an old paper company pine forest, now an empty lot next to my house and it will be no problem for me to collect one. I'll get the 1 footer for sure. I asked this question because I searched the internet and books trying to get the best information on Myrtles. I was thinking some of the reasons everyone said here as to why they might not bloom, or just not yet. Talking to other people and most information on Crape Myrtles says all of them bloom in summer about this time, if you give ample sunlight, nutrients, etc. I don't believe it, but common wisdom is that every sub species of the Crape Myrtles bloom. I also thought if this one is indeed one it should bloom because every landscaped Myrtle here in Florida blooms even if they are left unattended for years and poorly kept, but I guess that's why those are landscaping trees because they are some hybrid that always does bloom. And I heard that it can't be because there is no flowers.

Another question I have could they be not as healthy because all this land is Pine trees and the soil could be to acidic???


Russel,
I saw a classified ad in the Dailey News down here about a Ft. Walton Bonsai club meeting but I didn't go. I am interested and info on it would be appreciated.

Josh S.
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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Russell Coker on Fri Jun 15, 2012 1:09 pm



I seriously doubt that the soil would too acidic for them to bloom. Like I said before sometimes seedlings do strange things, and it sounds like these are seedlings - and young.

The FWB club is great, and if you're serious about bonsai you'd be a fool not to take advantage of a resource like that. This is a great resource too, but it doesn't take the place of being with people in your area actually doing bonsai. You just missed our regional show that FWB hosted with bonsai from the Mississippi Coast, Mobile and Pensacola. We all take turns, next spring it will be here. I've known many of these folks since I was a teenager, and trust me you'll be welcomed with opened arms. And "Welcome!" here too.

I'll pm you the info.

R

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Russell Coker on Sat Jun 16, 2012 3:53 pm



There is a private message waiting for you. Mash the mail button under the banner at the top of the page.

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Josh S. on Sat Jun 16, 2012 9:31 pm

Bark Texture


Overall Picture (4 foot tall Crape Myrtle?)

Bottom of tree trunk structure


Last edited by jschantz86 on Sat Jun 16, 2012 10:07 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : sorry getting used to loading pics)

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  marcus watts on Sat Jun 16, 2012 9:49 pm

most crepes out of their comfort zones dont bloom either - my friend has an old bonsai myrtle and never had a flower.

they dont seem to like our part of the uk though - lots of messing about in the winter finding frost free with no cold drafts - all the leaves drop off otherwise

marcus

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Josh S. on Sat Jun 16, 2012 10:01 pm

I cut a branch back last fall and has 2 shoots like that of a Crape


Smaller 1 foot tree


Trunk of Small Tree 1/4" maybe

From Above small tree



Last edited by jschantz86 on Sat Jun 16, 2012 10:04 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Picture was wrong)

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Josh S. on Sat Jun 16, 2012 10:18 pm

Thanks Russell I got your message. Heck yeah I wish I went to that show I'm sure it was good. I had no idea there was a following here and the surrounding areas. It's unfortunate there is not more nurseries around here or even a small bonsai shop, there is one out off I-10 in Cottondale but thats a couple hours away. There's some nurseries but scattered, all we have is homedepot and Lowes Mad . That's why I taken a liking to looking for wild plants and trees and legally of coarse. After all that is how Bonsai was created years ago.
Is the best way to get plants through people you know or through the internet?

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Billy M. Rhodes on Sat Jun 16, 2012 10:44 pm

Is the best way to get plants through people you know or through the internet?

We had a club meeting today, I took four red maples grown from seed with one inch trunks and put them on the raffle table, there were some other nice plants and pots on the table. Also, Mike Cartrett brought up a nice selection of plants for sale at reasonable prices.
Join the nearest club and attend meetings.

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  JimLewis on Sat Jun 16, 2012 11:12 pm

That plant(s) does not look like crape myrtle to me.

_________________
Jim Lewis - lewisjk@windstream.net - Western NC - People, when Columbus discovered this country, it was plumb full of nuts and berries. And I'm right here to tell you the berries are just about all gone. Uncle Dave Macon, old-time country musician

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Russell Coker on Sun Jun 17, 2012 1:36 am

JimLewis wrote:That plant(s) does not look like crape myrtle to me.


Yep, NOT crape myrtle. That's Vaccinium, probably V. arboreum, sparkleberry or huckleberry.

It's hard to learn bonsai and plants via the interent. Like Billy said, join a local club. There is a great network of clubs along the coast, not to mention all of Florida (Bonsai Societies of Florida).

R

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Russell Coker on Sun Jun 17, 2012 10:59 pm

marcus watts wrote:most crepes out of their comfort zones dont bloom either - my friend has an old bonsai myrtle and never had a flower.

they dont seem to like our part of the uk though - lots of messing about in the winter finding frost free with no cold drafts - all the leaves drop off otherwise

marcus


Marcus, what you just described is probably one of the biggest factors for why your friend's doesn't bloom. They AREN'T tropical. I'm not frost free, and it freezes here - and they grow way farther north than where I am here on the Gulf Coast. The leaves are supposed to drop, they NEED a dormancy, even if it's short like it is in southern Florida. They are beautiful in all seasons and you are cheating yourself out of what is some of the best fall color we have around here.

Now whether your summers are long enough and hot enough is another factor altogether!

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  coh on Sun Jun 17, 2012 11:31 pm

Yep, they thrive in inland Virginia where there is a definite winter - not like an upstate NY winter, but long periods well below freezing with occasional snow and ice. And my Mom had one growing in her garden on Long Island, which is even colder than Virginia. It managed to bloom each summer, but I think Long Island summers are quite a bit warmer than where Marcus is located.

That said, I'm sure there are some varieties that are more reluctant to bloom, that need a little extra summer heat. I know some varieties bloomed very late even with the hot summers we had in Virginia.

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Josh S. on Mon Jun 18, 2012 2:37 am

I looked up sparkleberry and huckleberry your most likely right. Good guess just by looking at the picture. It doesn't hurt my feelings though, I didn't have any big plans for the tree. It did have me fooled a little I thought it had the branch structure similar to that of a Crape Myrtle and did loose it leaves last winter. I've never seen any yet and I know it's more of a common shrub, but have ya'll seen a sparkleberry or huckleberry Bonsai?


-Josh

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Re: Is there a crape myrtle tree that does not bloom?

Post  Russell Coker on Mon Jun 18, 2012 3:24 am


Oh, I'm right. I grew up around those plants. But I have to say that I can see how you could confuse them, the leaves are branching are similar - until you see them side by side. Same family as blueberry, btw. They actually bloom in the spring with little white flowers, and have nice fall color too. There is a really good chance that the small one is connected to the other one, they sort of make a little colony. I've tried to dig them before and the one I was after didn't have any roots of its own. One of our club members has one he's been working on for a while now, although I don't think his is the same species. Join the FWB club and hitch a ride over for the regional show next spring, and our club auction is in October. Good to have a name too, welcome Josh.


Last edited by Russell Coker on Mon Jun 18, 2012 1:16 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : added thought)

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