Crape myrtles are said to be the quintessential trees for southern states. Having grown up with them I would say I became a little bit unappreciative of their many good characteristics.
After all they are known for good drought resistance. And they've been hybridized to resist mildews and pests they once were susceptible to. When they start blooming in late spring their striking flowers will last for several months brightening up the middle story in the summer landscape.
Many years ago (when I knew even less than I do now about gardening) I planted two Lagerstroemia x 'Tuscarora' crape myrtles as specimen trees within a few feet of each other and to the corner of the screened enclosure.
As a matter of fact they are squeezed in between the pathway leading from the brick patio out to the back gardens and the screened lanai. Their large plumes of coral pink are blooming their heads off right now. Fortunately, this variety is a smaller crape than some.
Even so, branches of the trees dangle over the pathway making it necessary for adult-sized passersby to either duck or hold them out of the way. It isn't really an ongoing problem until the crapes come into bloom which causes the limbs to fall a tad bit under the weight of the showy flowers.
Not exactly ideal. All the more reason to be sure the space a tree is given can handle its size all the way to maturity.
This spring, as my admiration of these beauties has been renewed, I've added 4 more to the garden. They haven't cooperated in setting buds... yet. We might be waiting until next year for that.
Hopefully my placement of them has improved over time. But now that I think about it ... I did push the limits even on the newly planted trees.
Why is it some lessons are harder to learn than others!