A: It is rare for a crape myrtle to completely fail to bloom. I think it’s very possible you pruned off the new growth that gives rise to flowers each year. The best time to prune a crape myrtle is in winter before any growth appears. Of course, I would rather you not prune at all. Pruning does not make the plant flower any better, and it can lead to disease and insect problems.
Q: I have a very steep hill, 30 feet high and 100 feet long, next to my flat lawn. What are some low-maintenance plants that would give it a wild, natural look? Tim Pethel, Dahlonega
A: In the words of Yogi Berra, “You can observe a lot by just watching.” You need to drive around Dahlonega and note the plants used for situations like yours. If you can manage the yearly cutback in January, maiden grass is an option. Vines like Carolina jasmine or crossvine can be trained to spread over a large area. I’ve collected other plant options for consideration on a steep bank at bit.ly/GAgroundcover.
Email Walter at firstname.lastname@example.org. Listen to his comments at 6:35 a.m. on “Green and Growing with Ashley Frasca” Saturday mornings on 95.5 WSB. Visit his website, www.walterreeves.com, or join his Facebook Page at bit.ly/georgiagardener, for his latest tips.