Crepe Myrtle-Pests or Disease???

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

What is this????

Found this white stuff on my tree today. Havent gotten the bloom expected outta this one this year. We sprayed all our CM about a month ago for critters.

I have several CM in my front yard. Will this spread??? How do I make it go away???

Love my CMs. Any advice is much appreciated,


Thumbnail by KittyKatstadt
Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

It is difficult to tell because the sun is so bright on the tree, but the trunk looks like it has a bad case of scale-in which case you need to spray. But an oil spray would likely cause burn in the summer heat. I would ask a reputable Nurseryman for an opinion before doing anything. I love crepe myrtles. When we lived in Louisiana they were everywhere.

Powder Springs, GA(Zone 7b)

A close up of of the affected area will help ID it better.

If it is scale a hard blast of water will dislodge most of it.

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

Hi Jo....

Thanks for your reply. I did some zoom and crop on the pic. There should be more detail now ( I Think! ). Is this an "insect"?? Is it killing my tree??

It is extremely hot here!! Way too hot!!! I love Washington!! Especially being there...
when it's this hot here!!!

I will take your advice and go to a nursery this weekend.

Thank you!!

Thumbnail by KittyKatstadt
Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

OOOoooh! That's a HORRIBLE scale attack- I doubt that any water would take care of that. After spraying with whatever your nursery person suggests, I would definitely get some systemic insecticide to work in around the roots for the future. Ask for suggestions for that too. It's the same systemic used for roses- don't use it near food!!! Possibly you could even use a long handled brush with dishwashing liquid and water and scrub a lot of the scale off. It looks like the trunks are fairly exposed- that will help get the varmints off! I shiver just looking at the photo! Incredible that you didn't notice the problem before now.

Prairieville, LA(Zone 9a)

Yup...that is scale . here is some info for you from Texas A&M Ag. They request that if you live outside the Dallas area, please let them know if this new to Texas pest shows up in your area.

Dublin, CA(Zone 9a)

Even though water's not going to take care of the whole problem, I would still start by blasting with the hose to dislodge whatever you can, then use an appropriate pesticide to deal with what's left.

Prairieville, LA(Zone 9a)

The link from TAMU suggests using a soft longhandled brush and dishsoap solution over as much of the bark as possible. It also make recommendations for treatment.

it is quite possibly the Eriococcus lagerstroemia scale from Asia...a cousin to common azalea scale

Santa Ana, CA(Zone 10b)

ecrane3, After blasting with the hose, I would spray with insecticidal soap & treat with a systemic. If the heat is still on during the day, you could spray in the evening, then hose it off the next morning. I know that's alot of work, but I've never seen such a heavy infestation, and it could kill the plant. In any event, it's going to take more than one treatment.
I have a couple of citrus that get all kinds of scale and mealiebugs. I have tried the Bayer product, but it works very slowly, and I don't want to kill Honeybees in the process, so this year I have started alternating between light oil spray (to suffocate) and Insecticidal soap (the fatty acids eat through the waxy couting, in theory) on a two week schedule in spring. Summer gets to be a problem because of the heat and the proximity of the neighbors.
Good luck!

Irving, TX(Zone 8a)

Thank you all for the advice and info!!! I just now got back here to see the replies ya'll sent. I haven't yet gone to the A&M web site, am about to... but I am freaking out that this is an insect!!! My poor little tree!!!! No wonder he hasn't felt like blooming big and pretty like last year!!!

Thanks again.... from my tree and me.

This message was edited Aug 19, 2012 2:10 PM

Prairieville, LA(Zone 9a)

Good luck. Crapemyrtles are pretty tough, so it should bounce back. I would recommend taking a look at all of your crapemyrtles...if one has scale, the others may also.

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