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There's not a prettier blooming plant around at this time of the year than the crape myrtle. But they're on the decline though and the reason for the decline of the blooms is because they complete their lifecycle and form these little balls right here, they're seedpods. That's the only reason the thing is blooming is to form the seedpods anyway.

Now, we can trick this thing into blooming again if we remove those seedpods after they have finish blooming. So all you have to do is go look at them, make sure they are the seed ball and not the blooms. You can tell by that because they are real hard, and just get you some snippers. You don't have to carefully remove them; we're talking about just getting you some snippers and snipping them off just like that. Cut them off and then they'll reinitiate growth from this area here and form new blooms which will bloom this fall.

So for goodness sakes, don't lose the beauty of your crapemyrtle by leaving these seed balls on it. Because this is also the way you prune a crape myrtle during the wintertime after it goes dormant. But if you cut this, you will cause side chutes to come out and not only will you have more blooms but you'll have a more intense bloom than you did this spring because the coolness of the fall will make the bloom last a lot longer.

So for goodness sakes, keep our crape myrtles blooming and lets enjoy them this fall because they are one of the prettiest blooming plants that we have to enjoy at this time of the year.

This is Jerry Parsons Vegetable Specialist for the Texas Agricultural Extension Service the Weekend Gardener.

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