|Not just big crepe myrtle flowers, but the biggest and fullest in the area -|
thanks to mulching, earthworms, watering, and pruning.
The crepe myrtle was blooming continuously, but starting to be more seedy than bloomy, so we cut all the blooms off and used them for mulch in the circular rose garden around the maple tree.
Almost at once the crepe myrtle began with a little bloom. I thought we missed one flower, but this was a new one, very small. Last year the entire bush filled with new blooms while the rest in the neighborhood faded into seedheads.
Two additional methods get the most from the crepe myrtle. One is maintaining a constant mulch layer, which will be piled up with autumn leaves for the winter, the more leaves, the better. This feeds the soil creatures and fungi below, so the plant has fertile soil, constant exchanges at the roots, and moisture held in place by mulch and organic material below. Another is watering the plant, which is neglected by others because of its drought tolerance. I give it a good shower with the hose, rinsing off the dust and giving it a good drink of water.
Rose Tips from Experience
Last night I watered most of the roses, because I usually cut roses for the altar on Sunday morning. A long soak will start or finish blooming and give me more choices to cut.
Soaking is also a good time to look for laggard roses. The soaker hoses mean some roses are missed or get less than their share. Those on the edge tend to get elbowed by the needs of the lawn grass.
- For those roses encroached by grass, I add a bigger and deeper area of mulch, so the grass is turned into compost and wood fragments hold more water.
- I also dip rainwater from the storage barrels in back. Every hopeless case has come back from rainwater.
|Like Pokeweed, Fireweed will sprout anywhere,|
with miniature versions if conditions are tough and dry.
|So that is what I have seen on my walks, too.|