10 Crepe Myrtle Varieties to Grow in Australia

Crepe myrtle makes a gorgeous shade tree in summer and then lets the sun through in winter. Plus, it’s really easy to grow and once established, requires very little care.

There’s something quite magical about crepe myrtle trees. I love its interesting vase shape and also the magnificent burst of colour when the tree blooms in late summer.

These stunning trees suit Australian conditions perfectly. And there are numerous different varieties that you can consider growing.

Here are just some of the most popular crepe myrtle varieties that you might like to consider.

Lagerstroemia ‘Coral Magic’

This is one of the ‘Magic Series’ bred by Flemings Nursery. It grows to a height of 1.8 metres and a similar width. This makes it ideal for most gardens as it’s not too large.

New foliage on this cultivar has a red tinge and this eventually turns deep green as it matures. The flowers are a gorgeous coral pink in colour and cover the tips of the branches.

This cultivar would look fantastic planted en masse along a tall border.

Lagerstroemia ‘Moonlight Magic’

Another cultivar in the ‘Magic Series’, this plant has very attractive white flowers from summer right through into autumn.

The foliage on this medium, upright tree is a glossy maroon to purple in colour. It grows to a height of 4 metres and a width of 2 metres with multiple stems.

The white flowers look absolutely stunning against the dark foliage so this would make an outstanding specimen tree.

Lagerstroemia ‘Sunset Magic’

This is another stunning tree with dark purple foliage but it has cherry red flowers. It can grow to a height of 4 metres with a spread of 2.5 metres. 

The tree is multi-stemmed which makes it ideal as a specimen tree in your garden.

Lagerstroemia ‘Red Magic’

Apart from its deep green foliage which has a red tinge when new, this cultivar has vibrant red flowers which appear in early summer and cover the foliage.

This cultivar is also resistant to powdery mildew. It’s a smaller growing variety that reaches a height and width of 1.8 metres.

Lagerstroemia ‘Purple Magic’

Another cultivar in the ‘Magic Series’, this variety has stunning purple flowers and dark green foliage that has a purple tinge when young.

This is also a large shrub form that reaches a height and width of 1.8 metres. Plus, it’s relatively resistant to powdery mildew.

Lagerstroemia ‘Zuni’

This multi-stemmed tree has attractive pink flowers and glossy medium-green leaves. Young growth is tinged with red and the leaves turn a gorgeous orange colour in autumn.

This tree grows to a height of 4 metres and a width of around 3 metres so it needs a prominent spot in your garden.

Lagerstroemia ‘Sioux’

If you’re after a tree with stunning pink flowers, then this one might be right for you. It has a lovely rounded canopy and will grow to a height of 4 metres with a spread of 3 metres.

The foliage is dark green and turns a lovely coppery brown in autumn. This cultivar is also resistant to powdery mildew.

Lagerstroemia ‘Natchez’

The branches on this lovely tree can exhibit a slightly weeping effect with masses of large white flower inflorescences.

The leaves are glossy mid-green and turn to an outstanding bronze colour in autumn.

This is a large tree that will reach a height of 8 metres and a width of around 6 metres. Therefore, it needs plenty of space to grow in your garden.

Lagerstroemia indica ‘Nana’

This is a popular dwarf variety that is ideal for small gardens and can even be grown in pots. It grows to a height and width of 1.5 metres and has stunning bright pink, white or purple flowers.

Lagerstroemia ‘Acoma’

This is another smaller growing variety that has lovely white flowers. It can reach a height and width of 3 metres. 

The leaves are dark green but start out with a bronze tinge when new. These then turn a dark purple in autumn. 

The tree has exfoliating bark that will expose an attractive greyish-brown trunk underneath.


Which crepe myrtle is native to Australia?

Lagerstroemia archeriana is native to Australia and New Guinea. It is mainly found in dry forests in the far north of the country. The tree has lovely pink flowers.

What is the smallest variety of crepe myrtle?

There is a dwarf variety of crepe myrtle known as Lagerstroemia indica ‘Nana’. It only reaches a height and spread of 1.5 metres.

What is the most hardy crepe myrtle?

Most crepe myrtles are relatively hardy but one of the hardiest for Australian conditions is Lagerstoemia ‘Zuni’. This variety has an abundance of pink to purple flowers.

Why might you not want to plant crepe myrtle?

Many crepe myrtles are multi-stemmed trees, except for more recent cultivars, and need a fair amount of space if you want to admire their true splendour. Therefore, if you have a small yard, you might not want to consider growing one of the tree varieties and go for either dwarf or smaller growing cultivars.

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Annette Hird

Annette Hird is a gardening expert with many years of experience in a range of gardening related positions. She has an Associate Diploma of Applied Science in Horticulture and has worked in a variety of production nurseries, primarily as a propagator. She has also been responsible for a large homestead garden that included lawn care, fruit trees, roses and many other ornamental plants. More recently, Annette has concentrated on improving the garden landscape of the homes that she has lived in and focused a lot of energy on growing edible plants as well. She now enjoys sharing her experience and knowledge with others by writing articles about all facets of gardening and growing plants.


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