It's Not Too Late to Prune Crape Myrtles

By Dinkum (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

By Dinkum (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

It’s not too late to prune your crape myrtles now. While we consider late winter to be the ideal time to prune crape myrtles, now (early spring) is also OK for pruning them. Unlike some other flowering plants, crapes will develop their flower buds on new growth-as long as you don’t miss too much of the early growing season you’ll hardly notice a difference in bloom time. And if you’re a little late…bloom time will just be delayed by a short time. So go ahead and tidy up your crapes with these instructions.

If leaves have not yet or have just barely appeared, you're safe to prune with little effect. Pruning as late as May will likely cause some delay in bloom time, and pruning later than May may delay bloom noticeably but will not harm the tree. Any branches you leave untouched will be unaffected, so as with any tree, removing poorly placed or dead/broken branches can be done at any time.