Crape Myrtle disorder!!!

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by Think Green, Mar 24, 2011.

  1. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,746

    I will post a pic when my computer and Iphone are working together.

    The top of one mature crape myrtle had 4 limbs that were flattened out at the top and sort of drooping as if they were hot pressed. The integrity of the bark tissue or the function of the branch isn't effected as buds are generating. The limbs were removed today as we were limbing the trees back away from a second story eave. I don't suspect anything out of the ordinary other than these odd looking limbs. These mis configurations have never been seen on these trees before now.
    Has anyone ever seen heard or seen something like this before??
    I have been pruning the myrtles back for 16 years now and never anything like this before. I am not worried...........just curious as I can't find anything on Google relating to malformed stems of the myrtle family.
  2. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,746

    Here is a picture of one limb............??

    Anyone with a clue.......? Fungus--Virus--Insect??

  3. Leo the Landscaper

    Leo the Landscaper LawnSite Member
    Posts: 116

    That is considered epinastic growth. It is not a disease, but rather abnormal cell growth. The production of ethylene due to certain environmental stressors is usually the culprit. For example flooding can cause this reaction. There are many other instances of epinasty that do not have a definative causal agent.

    I would not be concerned just prune out the affected areas.
  4. hoylebros

    hoylebros LawnSite Member
    Posts: 100

    I have never seen that on a Crape Myrtle before but I have seen it once on a Crimson Pygmy Barberry. Thought it was odd, but it never affected the plant at all.
  5. bamaturf

    bamaturf LawnSite Member
    from alabama
    Posts: 136

    thats really weird looking, i've seen that 1 time but had no idea what it was.
    now i do thanks to Leo the Landscaper.
  6. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,746

    HHMM!- How interesting! I have never witnessed this phenomenon in all my years in this business even in the nursery business. This is one particular large Crape Myrtle growing adjacent to a customers two story wall. There is many types of squirrels, birds, and other flying critters around. I did look into MLO's or (Microscopic Like Organisms) to those that are wondering about my abb. There wasn't anything supporting my curiosities. I will look into the subject of epinasty since I am only familiar with disorders that stem from insect damage and cellular malformations from insect attack. This must be a fluke genetic malformation due to heat stresses and partial shade.
    Thanks for the response. I will post more if this thread stays alive.

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