Tonto Crape Myrtle
Tonto Crape Myrtle
Lagerstroemia (indica x fauriei) 'Tonto'Item #5635 USDA Hardiness Zone: 6 - 9
Large clusters of soft-textured fuchsia-red blooms on a semi-dwarf, multi-stemmed shrub. Foliage turns a luscious orange-red in fall for exquisite cool season color. Smooth, colorful peeling bark adds year-round interest. Resists mildew, and is heat and drought tolerant. Ideal as a landscape accent or container specimen. Deciduous.
- OverviewLight Needs:Full sunWatering Needs:Once established, water occasionally; more in extreme heat or containers.Average Landscape Size:Quickly reaches 8 ft. tall and wide.
- DetailBotanical Pronunciation:la-ger-STRE-mee-a IN-di-kaDeciduous/evergreen:DeciduousSunset climate zones:7 - 10, 12 - 14, 18 - 21Growth rate:FastAverage landscape size:Quickly reaches 8 ft. tall and wide.Special features:Attractive Bark, Easy Care, Fall Color, Fast Growing, Improved Disease Resistance, Tolerates Urban Pollution, WaterwiseFoliage color:GreenBlooms:SummerFlower color:Purplish-pinkFlower attributesShowy FlowersDesign IdeasThe reduced stature of this multi-branched shrub or small tree is perfectly scaled for smaller residential gardens. Feature in large containers as a patio or entry focal point. Good disease resistance ensures attractive foliage and abundant flowering with little care, making it well suited for mass planting in large-scale beds or as an informal hedge. Plant near pathways where the handsome, exfoliating trunk can lend interesting texture and appeal, especially during the dormant winter months.Companion PlantsCalifornia Lilac (Ceanothus); Lilyturf (Liriope); False Heather (Cuphea); Agapanthus (Agapanthus); Indian Hawthorn (Rhaphiolepis)
- CareCare InformationThrives in average, well-drained soil. Water deeply, regularly during first growing season to establish an extensive root system; reduce frequency, once established. Feed in early spring. Thin young trees late winter to early spring; leave 3 to 7 main trunks or canopy branches. Remove suckers from the base of older trees.Light Needs:Full sunWatering Needs:Once established, water occasionally; more in extreme heat or containers.
- History & LoreHistory:In 1959, Dr. Donald Egolf began a program at the U.S. National Arboretum to develop disease resistance, hardiness, true flower color, recurrent flowering, and both shrub and tree type growth habits in Crape Myrtles. Germplasm of Lagerstroemia fauriei was collected in Japan by Dr. John Creech and distributed to the arboretum. This was discovered to be resistant to powdery mildew and to possess a unique, heritable, dark brown trunk color. L. fauriei was incorporated into the research program with great success. Twenty-seven cultivars have been released, 20 of which are L. indica x L. fauriei hybrids. The successful hybridization of Lagerstroemia indica with Lagerstroemia fauriei revolutionized the development of Crape Myrtle. In addition to field resistance to powdery mildew, the hybrids provide new trunk colors that in the future may be sought as much as the brilliant flowers. 'Tonto' was introduced in 1990 and is noted for its resistance to leaf spot and powdery mildew.