The last thing a rose grower wants to see, is a rose disease, marring his or her beautiful rose bush. Unfortunately, roses are very susceptible to three diseases. The most common ailments include Black Spot, Powdery and Downy Mildews, and Rose Rust. These are all fungus infections that can be readily treated with fungicides. It is important to apply fungicides at the first signs of disease, or in advance of hot and humid weather when diseases are most likely to occur. The first line of defense is to focus on preventing rose diseases.
Preventing rose diseases is an important part of your care and maintenance program. Promoting strong and healthy plants aids them in fighting diseases. Here are the simple steps of disease prevention:
Promote strong plants and healthy growth through proper use of fertilizer and providing ample water.
Prune your bushes regularly to provide good air circulation.
Whenever possible, apply water to the roots, avoiding water on the leaves if possible.
Vigilantly remove old and weak leaves and stems.
Keep a watchful eye on other flower and vegetable plants in your yard that may get a disease first and create a breeding ground that spreads to your rose bushes.
Treat rose bushes for insects, as they are often carriers of plant disease.
Plant roses in sunny areas, when possible.
Once the disease has paid a visit to your rose garden, it is important to address it quickly. Fungicides are effective in treating most diseases. If you don’t catch it early, it is more difficult to control and eliminate. Your plants will be weakened by the assault. Weak plants spend their energy on survival, fighting the disease, and rebuilding stems and leaves. Last on the list at this time is producing new flowers.
Make sure to remove any dead and seriously infested leaves and stems. It is better to remove affected leaves, allow the plant to focus its energy on fighting disease in a smaller area, and build new growth.