I am so frustrated with my Crepe Myrtles, it has forced me to join a forum! I will keep this as short as possible but will include all the details to hopefully help out with answers.
Here is my problem...I live in Central California, which gets very hot and somewhat dry summers. I have 2 CM trees and 5 CM bushes planted in the back yard, all in full sun. They are all quality CM's, bought at a local nursery about 8 years ago. I prune them every year, they are provided plant food throughout the year etc. etc. Every year, during the summer, all of the CM (along with my Rose of Sharon bushes) get completely overwhelmed with aphids. There have been several years where the aphids are SO thick that the flowers never open. I have tried about every type of aphid killer sprays there is and it does very little. What really gets me is my neighbor bought 4 CM trees about 3-4 years ago and has done NOTHING to them! No pruning, no plant food, no aphid killer....nothing. They get no aphids and look like other CM trees that are 30 years old. They are huge and beautiful. As I walk the neighborhood in the summertime, I never see any other CM's with such aphid problems. Someone told me not to prune them, so I didn't for that year, and that didn't help. Another person told me you have to prune them really far down, kind of like roses. I tried that too, and it did nothing.
So why are my CM's aphid magnets? And why do my neighbors do so great with no care at all? And last but not least, what is the correct way to prune them? Down to the nubs or just mild pruning?
Sorry about being so long here guys. Thanks for any help!