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Lagerstroemia Speciosa (Queen crape-myrtle) closely resembles the tuscarora tree (see description). Yet, the Queen Crape is a larger tree which can reach a height of 60 feet with a spread of up to 40 feet.
Additionally, in cultivation the tree is typically smaller. It also has an upright, dense, rounded crown. The bark is an attractive gray color, smooth and flaky. The leaves are green, leathery, deciduous, opposite or sub-opposite, oval to elliptical and 4 to 12 inches long. Leaves are shed in winter after turning a red color; in the spring when the tree is leafless flowering occurs.
Additionally, flowers are borne on foot-long inflorescences of large 2 – 3 inch wide showy blooms, pink to lavender in color. Fruits are dry, hard brown round oval capsules 1 – 2 inches long: seeds and cuttings are for propagation. The leaves are used to make medicinal tea for several ailments. The wood is durable and used in construction. Lagerstroemia Speciosa (Queen crape-myrtle) can be grown in a range of soil types, providing they are well-drained. It is frost sensitive, otherwise very urban tolerant.
Besides, young trees need pruning as well as later to maintain the crown shape. It is ideal as a shade and specimen tree, for residential yards and gardens, in parks, along sidewalks, parking lot islands and in large containers.
Other name: Giant Crape Myrtle