Crape Myrtles are terrific plants for zones 6 to 9 where they bring lots of color to the summer and fall seasons. Most are tall shrubs and even small trees, so they have never been suitable for smaller gardens, container planting or situations where smaller shrubs are needed. However, all of that has changed with the introduction of the Razzle Dazzle® Dwarf Crape Myrtle collection. These fantastic plants combine brilliant summer color with a dwarf growing habit and they are hardy throughout zone 6. This means that if you have a tiny garden you can still enjoy the beauty of Crape Myrtle all summer long. Even if you don’t have a garden and can only garden in pots, this plant is an ideal choice for pot growing and a terrific way to bring color to your planters.
Crape Myrtles are great plants for warmer areas and places with hot summers. They thrive in the heat and are drought tolerant too. They are easy to grow and will be happy in small soil volumes and restricted areas. They flower prolifically all summer and continue to do so right up to the first frost. Cherry Dazzle Crape Myrtle grows just 3 feet tall and 4 feet across, so it will fit into small gardens and it can be planted in pots and planter boxes too. It will thrive in the hottest, sunniest spot in your garden.
This plant has no serious pests or diseases and is even resistant to deer. In humid areas other Crape Myrtles can develop a white mildew on the leaves which is unsightly, but the Cherry Dazzle Crape Myrtle has been developed to be very resistant to that disfiguring disease.
Growing Cherry Razzle Dazzle Crape Myrtle Bushes
Cherry Dazzle Crape Myrtle grows into a full bush around 3 feet tall and 4 feet across, so it makes a lovely plant for the front of a bed of taller plants or a ground-cover in a dry, sunny location. The flowers are a rich cherry-pink color and appear throughout summer and right through fall until the first frost. The glossy leaves are red when they first appear in spring. They turn green for the summer and then become burgundy-red in late fall. Although it does not form a trunk the light-brown bark is an attractive winter feature too.
Unlike older types of Crape Myrtle, Cherry Dazzle Crape Myrtle is hardy right into zone 6, so it can be grown as far north as New York and parts of the Great Lakes. Like other Crape Myrtles it loves the heat and will thrive in the South, California and into Florida. It needs full sun and does well in all kinds of soil except those that are often wet, where it will not grow well. So don’t over-water or plant in a low-lying, wet part of your garden.
Planting Your Cherry Razzle Dazzle Crape Myrtle
Because this is a dwarf shrub, if you are planting a group or lining a walk-way, space the plants 3 feet apart. It is important with Crepe Myrtles not to plant any deeper than the containers they are in and not to cover the roots with a lot of soil. Dig a hole three times wider than the pot, but no deeper. Place your plant in the hole, replace most of the soil and firm it well down. Then water thoroughly and replace the rest of the soil, being careful not to cover the roots with any extra soil. When planting in a pot or planter box, use a regular potting soil and be sure to water every few weeks with a water-soluble plant food for flowering plants.
Water your Cherry Dazzle Crape Myrtle every week during the first growing season. After that, these are drought-hardy plants and will need little water except in long periods of very hot, dry weather. In containers let the soil become almost dry before giving a thorough soaking and don’t keep the pots constantly wet. To keep the flowers coming remove the flower-heads as soon as they turn brown.
History and Origins of the Cherry Razzle Dazzle Crape Myrtle
The common Crape Myrtle (Lagerstroemia indica) originally grew wild in China and Korea and was first brought to Charleston, South Carolina around 1790 from its natural home. Because it thrived there, it has long been a symbol of summer in the South, with its vivid bloom colours and long bloom period. However, it is a tall plant that will typically reach 15 to 20 feet or even more in some varieties, making it unsuitable for small gardens.
The famous horticulturist and plant breeder, Dr. Michael A. Dirr, realized how useful smaller forms of this plant would be and he set to work. Just a few years ago he released the Razzle Dazzle® Dwarf Crape Myrtle collection, and Cherry Dazzle is the pick of the bunch. Not only are these plants small and constantly in bloom, but they are a whole zone hardier than more old-fashioned Crape Myrtles and will grow right across zone 6.
Buying Cherry Razzle Dazzle Crape Myrtles at The Tree Center
Cherry Dazzle is such a special plant that only the exact plant will have the right flower color and be the size you need. It must be produced directly from trees absolutely known to be right. Our trees are grown the correct way, from branch cuttings of these special patented trees. However, these take longer to produce, so avoid cheaper, seedling trees that will only be a major disappointment.
We sell only trees that are true to the original form and we have a wide range of sizes to give you the best plant for your purpose. However, we are constantly renewing our stock so that our customers get fresh, healthy plants, so supplies of this tree may be limited. To avoid disappointment order now.