Crepe Murder 2014 — Oh, the Humanity!

March 5, 2014 | By | Comments (7)
Crepe Murder 2014

Photo: Courtney Bolton

The person responsible for this mass crepe murder in McComb, Mississippi obviously believes any crime worth committing is worth committing 50 times. Imagine the joy he must have torturing one innocent crepe myrtle a day for nearly two months! And so we present you with winner #4 in Crepe Murder 2014.

I suspect this place might be the new hide-out of serial killer, Joe Carroll, on the Fox TV show, “The Following.” Every day, Joe calmly approaches a new crepe myrtle with loppers in hands and whispers, “Shhhhh, my darling. Don’t afraid. I’m not going to hurt you. I’m giving you a gift. The gift of ugliness.”

Chop. Chop. Chop. Chop. Chop.

Let’s Blame Europe
Often after Grumpy pans such bad pruning, someone points out that this is a time-honored practice in Europe called “pollarding.” People there cut back large trunks and branches to the same points every year, creating gnarly, rheumatoid knuckles that they judge to be pretty, rather than disfiguring. It’s then suggested that because Europe does it, America should follow their example. That’s like saying every President of Italy ought to then be elected President of the United States. If you agree, I hope you like pizza and Peyton Manning, because I think Italy’s current President is Papa John. (I could be wrong.)

Crepe Murder 2014

America’s next President.

For sending Grumpy this outstanding example of crepe murder, Courtney Bolton wins a lavender ‘Early Bird’ dwarf crepe myrtle from our Southern Living Plant Collection. Check back here tomorrow for our next winner.


  1. Steve Bender

    Thanks for your totally excellent entry, Courtney. And for those who think crepe myrtles that aren’t murdered won’t bloom, I never prune mine and they bloom just fine every year.

    March 7, 2014 at 1:38 pm
  2. Courtney

    Reblogged this on I Do Declare and commented:
    For those of you who who are unfamiliar with the term “crepe murder”, this is a prime example of this horror. Crepe myrtles are not meant to be hacked up in this fashion. Many people do it because they didn’t size the tree to the site correctly, but that is no excuse. This is UGLY. Stop hacking up your crepe myrtles!

    March 6, 2014 at 8:13 am
  3. Courtney

    Thanks for choosing my photo, Steve. I felt like this horror needed to be shared, because this property (a large corner lot) is lined on two sides with crepe myrtles – and they’ve all been butchered in this fashion.

    March 6, 2014 at 8:06 am
  4. Carolyn

    I moved to zone 8b 3 years ago from zone 3, and the very first thing I planted was a crepe myrtle ‘Natchez.’ It’s doing fine. The young woman I bought it from is a graduate of Auburn horticulture, who told me I don’t have to prune it if I don’t want to. I don’t, but this is the time of year when neighbors and complete strangers feel the need to stop in and say “Now Dear, if you don’t prune that, you won’t get any flowers.” It’s interesting they never stop in when it’s in bloom.

    March 5, 2014 at 2:42 pm
  5. RedneckRosarian

    Reblogged this on Helena Beautiful and commented:
    Great info on caring for Crepe Myrtles

    March 5, 2014 at 11:19 am
  6. Betty Simmons

    There are so many inexplicable things in Europe. Thanks for taking on one of them! Now, how about explaining that French thing of a raw egg broken on top of a plate of spaghetti, or how to escape a roundabout when there’s no lane markers or traffic signals and they’re all driving 80 kph.

    March 5, 2014 at 10:51 am
  7. BrantleyNewton

    Yikes! Knuckles are for fingers, not foliage!

    March 5, 2014 at 10:03 am

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