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Lagerstroemia indica (Natchez) Crape-myrtle is a single or multi-trunked small tree with a wide-spreading to moderately dense crown. Natchez can be flat-topped, rounded, or vase-shaped. It potentially can grow to a height of 10 – 30 feet and a spread of 15 – 25 feet, but in cultivation is typically much smaller. It can be grown as a shrub. The bark is very attractive, smooth, pinkish-gray, and mottled, peeling off yearly. The dark-green, shiny, deciduous leaves are shed in winter; they are alternate, small, 2 – 4 inches long and under 2 inches wide, smooth-edged, rounded or oval-shaped, changing to yellow, orange or red in autumn before falling.
Furthermore, the flowers appear when the tree is without leaves and are very showy, borne in erect clusters up to 3 1/2 inches long; blossoms have ruffled or crinkly petals (like crepe paper), are variable in color depending upon the variety and measure 1 – 1 1/2 inches across. Fruits are small, oval to round capsules, about 1/2 inch long and brown; fruits persist on the tree and are showy before releasing disc-shaped seeds. Lagerstroemia indica (Natchez) Crape-myrtle is propagated by seed or cuttings. It grows best in moist, well-drained soils. Pruning is recommended if a single trunk is desired as well as to shape the crown.
The plant is hardy, tolerates freezing temperatures, but is susceptible to aphids, which can be controlled. Natchez is a very popular small landscape tree because of its overall beauty. It is an excellent tree or shrub in yards and gardens, parks, in parking lots, and along roadways.