Everyone wants to have in his garden the crepe myrtles in full bloom. Proper fertilization of crepe myrtles will help your shrub to have beautiful flowers. Every year I fertilize my crepe myrtles and then they bloom perfectly. Continue reading to find out what is the best fertilizer for crepe myrtles.
Providing nutrients to shrubs not only promotes their overall health but also results in an increased number of flowers. The crepe myrtles produce blooms on new growth, so by nourishing the plant, new growth will be encouraged, leading to a greater number of flowers. Here is an overview of the information needed to fertilize crepe myrtles properly.
What Is Best Fertilizer for Crepe Myrtles
What Is Best Fertilizer for Crepe Myrtles? Before I start talking about what is best fertilizer for crepe myrtles, I will explain a little about fertilizers in general. Surely you have used a fertilizer at some time, and you have seen it represented by the numbers 10-10-10 or different variations, these are the NPK numbers.
NPK stands for Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), and Potassium (K), which are the three primary macronutrients that plants need to grow and develop. NPK fertilizers are a blend of these nutrients in varying proportions and are used to supply plants with the nutrients they need to thrive. The NPK ratio listed on a fertilizer label represents the relative amounts of these three macronutrients in the product. For example, a fertilizer with an NPK ratio of 10-5-5 contains 10% Nitrogen, 5% Phosphorus, and 5% Potassium.
Crepe myrtles prefer slightly acid soils, i.e., a pH between 6 and 6.5. These shrubs can also thrive in soils with pH 5. I recommend reading our article about how to measure soil pH. Normally an 8-8-8 or 10-10-10 fertilizer will be adequate for crepe myrtles. However, depending on the needs of the shrub, the formula can be varied a little.
Now you know why fertilizer containers come with different numbers on their labels, and this is very important to select the best fertilizer for crepe myrtles. Next, I will explain which nutrients the crepe myrtles need in greater quantity to develop correctly.
Best Fertilizer for Crepe Myrtle Trees
Now that you know what NPK means, I can explain more about the nutrients that crepe myrtles need to develop properly. For example, if the pH of your crepe myrtle soil is slightly acidic, you can use an 8-8-8 or 10-10-10 fertilizer. This will provide nutrients to your crepe myrtle in a balanced way and encourage the shrub to develop.
But if you have measured the pH of the soil, and it has values above 6 and 6.5 the best thing to do is to lower the pH. The pH can be lowered in different ways, but there is already a fertilizer that comes with a high phosphorus content that will help lower the pH. This fertilizer is 8-55-7 and has a high phosphorus content which will promote flowering, plant development, and lower soil pH.
I only recommend applying the high phosphorus fertilizer if the soil pH is too high or the crepe myrtle plant needs to recover from a poor bloom the previous year. If your crepe myrtle is in good condition and developing properly use a balanced fertilizer as mentioned above, these would be 8-8-8-8 or 10-10-10.
Now that you know how to interpret NPK values and also understand the needs of crepe myrtles, you will know how to correctly choose the best fertilizer for crepe myrtles according to the needs of your shrub. Remember that it is always essential to know the pH value of the soil to fertilize correctly.
When to Fertilize Crepe Myrtles
When to Fertilize Crepe Myrtles? Crepe myrtles should be fertilized during their active growing season, which typically occurs in spring and early summer. Fertilizing in late summer or early fall can encourage new growth, which can be damaged by cold temperatures in winter.
It’s important to follow the instructions on the fertilizer label and not over-fertilize, as this can lead to leggy growth and reduced flower production. A soil test can help determine the specific fertilizer needs of your crepe myrtles, and a general guideline is to apply fertilizer once a month during the growing season.
It is also important to water the plants after applying fertilizer to help distribute the nutrients evenly throughout the soil.
How to Fertilize Crepe Myrtles
How to Fertilize Crepe Myrtles? As mentioned earlier, the best time to fertilize crepe myrtles is in spring or early summer. If you use slow granular fertilizer you should water after applying the fertilizer, this way the shrub will absorb the nutrients better.
There are other fertilizers such as liquid fertilizers that do not need to be watered after applying the fertilizer because it has already been diluted in water. I recommend always reading the manufacturer’s instructions because the indications may vary from one manufacturer to another.
How Often to Fertilize Crepe Myrtles
How Often to Fertilize Crepe Myrtles? Crepe myrtles should be fertilized once every 4–6 weeks during their active growing season, which typically occurs in spring and early summer. The frequency of fertilization will depend on the specific fertilizer needs of your plants, as determined by a soil test.
The University of Georgia mentions that it is important to follow fertilizer label instructions and not to over-fertilize, as this can lead to spiky growth and lower flower production. A general guideline is to apply fertilizer once a month during the growing season.
Young crepe myrtle plants need to be fertilized regularly during the growth stage for them to become established. Water the plants thoroughly after fertilizing to help distribute the nutrients evenly throughout the soil.
Crepe Myrtle Fertilizing Tips
Here are some tips that will help you with the fertilization of your crepe myrtles:
- For newly planted crepe myrtle, it’s recommended to provide fertilizer once a month during the active growing season.
- Established plants should be given a lighter fertilizer application every two weeks during the growing season or once in the spring with a slow-release fertilizer.
- In the fall, it’s important to cease fertilizing the crepe myrtle to prepare it for the dormant period.
In conclusion, fertilizing crepe myrtles is an important part of ensuring the health and beauty of plants. The right type of fertilizer, the right amount, and the right timing are all important factors to consider.
Proper fertilization, along with adequate watering and sunlight, will help ensure that your crepe myrtles grow strong and healthy, and produce a bountiful display of flowers each year. I recommend you read our article about how to prune crepe myrtle and when to prune crepe myrtle trees.