Why do my crepe myrtles go black? What is this white information on my crepe myrtle? If you ask yourself these questions, you probably have crepe myrtle scales on your trees. It was introduced in Texas in the United States in the mid-2000s. Shortly afterwards the crepe myrtle bark came to Louisiana.
How to identify crepe myrtle scales
Crepe myrtle bark is easy to identify. Look at your crepe myrtles. Do you have gray or white "felt covered" specifications on the crepe myrtle bark? Are these figures surrounded by black growth? You probably have a crepe myrtle scale. CMBS tends to cling to interfaces, young growth and branch sections.
If you have soot mold and insects on the leaves of the plant instead of the bark, you most likely have aphid problem. Fortunately, the following steps can solve the problem.
How to get rid of Crepe Myrtle Bark Scale
Crepe myrtle scales have a greater impact on crepe myrtles that are unhealthy. Crepe myrtles exposed to bad cutting habits (if you look at crepe myrtle attachments) are more likely to experience bad bark problems. Keep the right pruning methods to keep your trees healthy.
The best treatment time is in spring between April and May. A soil-soaked or deep root canal treatment with a product that contains imidacloprid. You can find this in every hardware store. Follow the mixing instructions and treat the area around the crepe myrtle drip line. Make sure you rake the mulch back before treatment. You can rake the mulch again after drying. Treat it again the following year to make sure you don't resurrect.
In winter you can use a dormant oil spray when all the leaves have fallen off the crepe myrtle. This should only be used in winter and it should be a quiescent oil that contains paraffin, not some of the lighter types of oil, as they do not kill the scales.
There has been some success with contact insecticides. Insecticides containing bifenthirin have had limited success. This solution works better on a younger scale.
Insect growth regulators as a crawler spray are useful to stop the crepe myrtle scale life cycle. The solutions must be used by a professional because they are restricted use products. Products containing pyriproxyfen or buprofezin have had good results in checking scales. Apply and spray on active crawlers to coat the affected area. This is usually spring.
How to get rid of black soot mold
You killed the scales, but the black soot mold remains. The cheapest and fastest option is cleaning. Place a few tablespoons of dish soap and warm water in a 5 gallon bucket. Scrub the affected areas lightly with a soft bristle brush that has been dipped in the soap solution.
Contact us today so we can fix your crepe myrtle scales problem.