Are you using the right tools? If you are constantly whacking your plants away, then put up the pruning tools and get a shovel. A well designed landscape should include appropriately selected plants that don’t outgrow their space. If this is your situation, then the plants really need to be removed and replaced with the appropriate plant material.
For instance, it is very important not to place your plants too close to the house. When selecting and planting a tree near a home’s foundation, the distance between the tree and the foundation should be at least one half of the spread of the tree. You should also allow additional room between the foundation and the tree for air circulation and maintenance – so that adds another two to three feet in addition to half of the tree spread. If you have the right size plants for the space, they should never require heavy pruning. You should only have to do some light pruning to shape them or encourage fuller growth.
With that said, you should never engage in topping trees, especially crape myrtles. Most likely, you have seen what is called “Crape Murder” around town. If not, “Crape Murder” is the practice of extreme cutting or topping of trees. The trees are cut so far back or down that they almost look like nubs. You may see your neighbors or even professional lawn care companies engaging in this practice. Don’t do it! This type of pruning or topping can actually weaken the tree and shorten the life span.
Crape Myrtles come in various sizes including crapes that will only reach 18 inches in height, dwarf crapes that grow to only approximately 3 feet in height, semi-dwarf that can grow to approximately 6 feet tall, medium crapes that reach to approximately 10 feet in height, and large crape myrtle trees that can grow to 15-25 feet tall. Many other types of trees and plants also come in various sizes. This makes it possible to select an appropriate size for your garden or landscape at the planning and design stage.
It is important to know the growth habits of each plant and their other cultural requirements. A professional landscape plan takes all of this into consideration. The Designscapes team is knowledgeable about the Raleigh landscaping area and can help you select appropriate plants for whatever your needs may be.
Give us a call at 919-844-3441 or fill out the contact form below and we will be glad to design and install a landscape plan that suits you.