Yellow Leaves on your crepe myrtle are never a good sign. Because it can completely destroy the gorgeous blossoms of your crepe myrtle trees.
Yellowing indicates that your plant is under stress. It’s an alarming situation because when under stress conditions, crepe myrtles drop most of their flower buds.
To get rid of this yellowing you always have to be one step ahead of the problem. So, why are the crepe myrtle leaves turning yellow?
There are 5 main causes of yellowing. These are Fungal leaf spots, Bacterial disease, Nutrient Toxicity, Aphid Attacks, and Cultural problems
In this article, I am going to talk about these causes with their effective solutions. So keep reading to find out –
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Why Are My Crepe Myrtle Leaves Turning Yellow
1. Fungal Leaf Spots Of Crepe Myrtles
Some fungal diseases create leaf spots on crepe myrtles. If the weather is very rainy and the leaves start to turn yellow or orange then, it is likely to be the fungal leaf spot.
These spots start with small yellow or orange specks, later they turn the whole leaves yellow. The leaves eventually start drooping. Crepe myrtles are most susceptible to fungal leaf spots in the 1st year. You can spot them by the yellow spots around the base of the plants.
During the humid season when you spot these yellow spots on your crepe myrtles get rid of them as soon as possible. First, collect all the infected leaves and throw them away safely. Then treat your crepe myrtles with the best fungicide.(Our Pick: Bonide Copper Fungicide)
Plant your crepe myrtles in a sunny spot and make sure the place has good air circulation. Plant leaf spot-resistant varieties such as “Fantasy”. Prune in late winter or early spring and remove the diseased branches.
Try these two amazing recipes to treat fungal problems on your crepe myrtles-
# Recipe 1:- Baking Soda Spray Recipe
- 5 teaspoons of baking soda
- 2 teaspoons of liquid soap
- 1 gallon of water
- Mix the baking soda with water
- Then add the liquid soap.
- Spray thoroughly on both sides of your crepe myrtle leaves twice a week.
#Recipe 2:- Vinegar Spray Recipe
- 6 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar
- 4 liters of water
- Few drops of liquid dishwashing soap
- Mix the ingredients very well
- Spray on both sides of the infected crepe myrtle leaves twice a week until the problem is solved.
2. Bacterial Disease of Crepe Myrtles
Bacterial leaf scorch is a fatal disease of crepe myrtles. The symptoms include yellow leaf tips and wilted leaves. The disease is spread by insects like aphids. Once this disease attacks the crepe myrtles, they will not be blooming anymore.
This is a very bad problem for crepe myrtles. When you spot yellow tips in the leaves, pick a good bactericide for your plant (our pick: Monterey Concentrate Fungicide & Bactericide). Remove the severely infected branches of the plants. Dispose of the infected parts to prevent the spread to other healthy plants.
3. Crepe Myrtle Aphids
Aphids are the most common pests of crepe myrtles. These are very tiny insects that suck the life out of your plants. The leaves start to turn yellow and curl. Large infestations make the leaves drop and affect the crepe myrtle blooming a lot.
It’s very crucial to fix this aphid problem because aphids also bring other kinds of fatal diseases like sooty mold and bacterial leaf spots.
For light aphid infestations, give a strong spray of water on both sides of the crepe myrtle leaves. In case of a larger infestation, you have to get rid of them immediately. Get the best insecticide for your crepe myrtles that will not harm the flower buds(our pick: Bonide (BND611) – Annual Tree and Shrub Insect Control)
Try these two amazing homemade recipes to get rid of the aphid problems-
#Recipe 1:- Horticultural Oil Recipe
- 3 teaspoons of liquid dishwashing soap
- 250 ml of any cooking oil like olive oil or vegetable oil.
- Mix these ingredients very well and
- Store them as a stock mixture in a bottle.
- Add 1 tablespoon of this mixture with every 250 ml of water and pour it into the sprayer.
#Recipe 2:- Basil Tea Recipe
- 1 Cup of fresh basil leaves
- 2 teaspoons of liquid soap
- 3 cups of water
- Boil the water in a pot and then remove it from heat
- Now add the basil leaves and cover the pot with a lid.
- Keep the lid closed
- Wait until the water cools down.
- Then strain the basil leaves from the water.
- Lastly, mix the liquid soap
- Put the mixture into the sprayer
- Spray it twice a week.
4. Nutrient Toxicity
Excessive nutrients in the soil can cause toxicity in your crepe myrtle. The leaves will start turning yellow and falling off. Too much application of fertilizers will bring this problem. Excess nutrients in the soil also invite harmful pests and bugs.
Crepe myrtles need less Nitrogen to produce good blooms. So it’s very important that you don’t overdose on Nitrogen. Apply the best slow-release bloom fertilizer to your crepe myrtles. (our pick: Nelson Plant FoodCrape Myrtle & All Flowering Trees)
5. Cultural Problems of Crepe Myrtles
Any change in cultural practices brings some symptoms. When the crepe myrtles are underwater they turn yellow. Even when they receive less sun their leaves also turn yellow.
Crepe Myrtles need constantly moist soil with a good drainage system. Established crepe myrtles can handle some drought but the young ones fail on that.
Also, they require 6-7 hours of sunlight. When they don’t get enough sunlight the photosynthesis reduces. The plant gets stressed and starts showing yellow leaves.
To revive the yellow crepe myrtles you need to water them correctly. But getting the right watering schedule can get tricky sometimes. It’s best to get a moisture meter to check the moisture level of your soil quickly (our pick: Atree Soil Soil Tester Kits with Moisture, Light, and PH Test for Garden)
Water newly planted crape myrtles once a week in cool weather. Established trees will need watering up to 3 times a week depending on the soil moisture and weather.
In the summer deep water your trees but make sure the soil is not waterlogged. But do not overwater them. It can cause root rot and kill the plant. If your crepe myrtles are planted in shady conditions, then relocate them to sunlight.
The beauty of any plant lies in its lush green foliage. So, it’s normal to get worried to see your crepe myrtle leaves turning yellow. But also keep in mind that crepe myrtles are deciduous plants. So, yellowing during the autumn is normal for crepe myrtles.
When you see yellow leaves on your plant, figure out if your plant is battling against disease or pests through this article. Take necessary steps and apply Crepe Myrtle fungicides and insecticides to treat them. And wait for the new green leaves to grow.
I hope this article helped you solve the problem of yellow leaves on your crepe myrtles. If you have any further questions ask away in the comments and share this article with your friends if they are facing the same problems.