Why are my crepe myrtles turning black? What are these white specs on my crepe myrtles? If you are asking yourself these questions, you likely have crepe myrtle bark scale on your trees. It was introduced to the United States in the mid-2000s in Texas. Crepe myrtle bark scale made its way over to Louisiana shortly afterwards.
How to Get Rid of Crepe Myrtle Bark Scale
Crepe myrtle bark scale affects crepe myrtles more that are unhealthy. Crepe myrtles that are subjected to poor pruning habits (looking at you crepe myrtle toppers) are more likely to get bad bark problems. Maintain proper pruning methods to keep your trees healthy.
The best time to treat is in during spring, between April and May. A soil drench or deep root treatment using a product containing imidacloprid. You can find this in any hardware store. Follow the mixing instructions and treat the area all around the drip line of the crepe myrtle. Be certain to rake back any mulch before treatment. You can rake the mulch back into place once the treatment has dried. Treat it again the following year to ensure you do not have a resurgence.
During the winter, you can use a dormant oil spray when all the leaves have fallen off the crepe myrtle. This should only be used during the winter and it should be a dormant oil containing paraffin, not some of the lighter oil varieties since they will not kill off the scale.
There have been some success with contact insecticides. Insecticides containing bifenthirin have had limited success. This solution works better on younger scale.
Insect growth regulators as a crawler spray are useful in stopping the crepe myrtle bark scale's life cycle. The solutions will have to be used by a professional since they are restricted use products. Products containing pyriproxyfen or buprofezin have had good success in scale crawler control. Apply when crawlers are active and spray to coat the affected area, this is usually spring.
How to Get Rid of Black Sooty Mold
You've killed off the scale, but the black sooty mold remains. The most affordable, and quickest option is to clean it off. Put a couple of tablespoons of dish soap and warm water in a five gallon bucket. Lightly scrub the affected areas with a soft bristle brush that has been dipped in the soapy solution.
Contact us today to have us get rid of your crepe myrtle bark scale problem.
What is a Living Green Wall?
A living green wall is a vertical arrangements of plants that don't take up a lot of floor space while looking nice. These are also called living walls, biowalls, modular green walls, or vertical gardens.
What Are the Benefits of Green Walls?
People like beauty and nature is beautiful. More people will notice, talk about, and want to be around green walls. The less greenery around, the more attractive your green wall becomes to people. You will attract more potential clients and team members with a well designed living green wall.
Exterior green walls lower energy costs by reducing the amount of solar radiation absorbed by the building in the summer. In the winter, they insulate the building from heat loss. Plants and the planting base absorb sound, keeping the area behind the green wall quieter.
Interior green walls increase oxygen and filter out pollutants. Studies have repeatedly shown indoor plants increase productivity while reducing stress. Plants regulate air temperature and humidity.
What Are Green Walls Made of?
Green walls can be as simple as a wire frame that supports small plastic bags filled with soil. They can also be made from structural medium that incorporates soil or non-organic alternatives which have a useful life of over a decade. An increase in the quality of the growing medium causes an increase in the amount of time between medium replacement. Loose soil in bags needs to be replaced every year or two. Structural media can last between a decade to fifteen years.
What Type of Plants Go in Green Walls?
This depends of the green wall's location. An interior green wall consists of a mix of tropical plants. Plants for exterior green walls tend to work better when using plants that would thrive in climate zone slightly north of the area being planted. Choose "easy to grow" plants. Plants with short life spans or plants that must be constantly cared for are not an ideal choice for a vertical green wall.
Can a Green Wall Have a Unique Design?
Yes. These are formed using different plants and maintaining gaps between plants. The simplest way is to get the spacing between plants and dimensions of the wall and to use it to make a color-coded dot diagram.
How Hard Are Green Walls to Care for?
They are actually quite time consuming. Green walls take a while to acclimate to growing vertically. The plants compete for space and try to grow over one another if not pruned often. An interruption in water could be disastrous for the entire wall. Regular fertilization is required. Unintentional changes in light are often a source of grief. If possible, hiring a professional to maintain your green wall is going to make things much easier.
Interested in Buying a Living Green Wall
If you live in either the Greater Baton Rouge or Greater New Orleans areas and are interested in buying a living green wall, please contact us or give us a call at 225-752-2333.