Characteristics of Crape Myrtle Tree (Lagerstroemia indica) in the Wild

Lagerstroemia indica
Crape myrtle is a flowering plant species of the genus Lagerstroemia in the Lythraceae family. This plant originates from Southeast Asia, including China, Korea, and Japan. Crape myrtle is also often referred to as Crapemyrtle or Crepeflower.

Crape myrtle trees grow a lot with upright stems, they also sometimes shed leaves in the dry season to display their beautiful flowers. This tree is very suitable to be planted in direct soil and full sun because the sun-exposed places make it flowering and fertile faster. However, this tree also can still live under a little shade, but it cannot flower if the total shade.

In England, the crape myrtle tree has received an award from the Royal Horticultural Society.

In the United States, crape myrtle trees are very popular in states with temperate climates (USDA Zones 7-10).

The simple care of the crape myrtle tree makes it one of the most common plants grown in parks, along sidewalks, or in the yard. It is also often found kept in large pots on the porch of people’s homes.

This tree is strong enough, it can withstand high temperatures, but cannot withstand cold temperatures or moist/inundated soils.

 

Characteristics of Crape Myrtle Leaf

Lagerstroemia indica Leaf
Source : flickr.com/Forest and Kim Starr

Myrtle crape leaves are round or oval and are dark green which then turns yellow, orange, then red in autumn.

 

Characteristics of Crape Myrtle Flower

Lagerstroemia indica Flower
Source : flickr.com/Figareine

The flowers have several color variants (depending on species dan cultivar), including white, pink, red, and purple.

Species and cultivars that produce beautiful colors include:

  • Pink (Lagerstroemia speciosa)
  • White (Lagerstroemia tomentosa)
  • Purple (Lagerstroemia ‘Purple Magic’)
  • Plum (Lagerstroemia langkawiensis)
  • Red (Lagerstroemia ‘Dynamite’)
  • Black (Lagerstroemia ‘Black Diamond’)

Lagerstroemia indica Fruit
Source : inaturalist.org/eun-shik_kim


 

The characteristics of Crape Myrtle Tree

Lagerstroemia indica Tree
Source : flickr.com/Susana Pieri Perriere

The crape myrtle tree prefers to be placed in an area that is exposed to full sun throughout the day, and it can grow to heights of 5-7 meters with a stretch of branches reaching 6 meters or more. The bark is smooth, reddish-gray, and speckled.

This tree is very commonly planted in the countries of the South Atlantic, Middle Atlantic to the coastal areas of Massachusetts, and is often found growing into large shrubs and produce beautiful flowers during flowering or autumn.

 

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