Here stands one of the largest and oldest specimens of Japanese crepe myrtle growing outside Japan. During the 1950s, John Creech (U.S. National Arboretum) collected seeds on the island of Yakushima in Japan. One seedling variant resulted in 'Fantasy', which J. C. Raulston named for its unusual upright, vase-like form.
Many modern crepe myrtle cultivars are hybrids of Japanese crepe myrtle and the common crepe myrtle (L. indica). The Japanese species contributes increased cold hardiness, tolerance to powdery mildew, and cinnamon-colored bark.
A JC Raulston Arboretum Introduction
Sign Sponsored by the Stanley Smith Horticultural Trust