Why is my Crepe Myrtle black and covered in sooty mold?
Crepe Myrtle Bark Scale is a newly discovered scale insect in Arkansas and the southern United States that is attacking crepemyrtles. The main symptom of these insects is a black residue that appears on the branches and trunk of the tree. You will also likely see white flecks or dots covering the tree–these are the actual insects. According to the U of A Cooperative Extension Service, the best treatment is to wash the affected areas with a mild dish detergent solution and a soft brush. Next, apply dormant oil to smother any overwintering insects. Then follow by using a systemic insecticide soil drench when the tree is growing from May-June. The systemic insecticide is absorbed by the tree roots
and moves throughout the tree killing any feeding insects during the growing season. This season long control is particularly important because there can be 3 generations of the scale insect emerging during the growing months.
If you have noticed black residue or white scales on your Crepe Myrtles, give us a call for a free estimate!
Please let us know if you have any questions or would like a quote for these services.
The images used are from the University of Arkansas Extension Office.