BASHAM’S PARTY PINK CREPE MYRTLE

Full sun; deciduous, with pale pinkish flowers throughout the warm season. Basham’s is a very large crepe myrtle hybridized in Houston, Texas. In addition to the usual benefits of crape myrtle (exfoliating bark and dappled shade), this variety is fast-growing and exceptionally large (up to 40 feet). It boasts improved resistance to powdery mildew and, best of all, fewer seeds – which means more flowers.If you’re a fan of the practice of crepe murder (chopping the tops off crape myrtles in winter), you should give this one a pass – it is much too big and graceful to deform.In general, pruning can be performed every four to six years; focus on minimizing dead, damaged, or rubbing branches, and removing no more than 25% of the canopy during any five-year period. Leave the upper 2/3 of the crown uncut to maintain a healthy specimen. Mulch with about 2″ of woodchips or pine bark wherever possible. (A six-foot diameter mulched area is the minimum.) If natural rainfall has been absent for a month or more in drought years and the tree seems badly stressed, water the area beneath the canopy.

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