Aphids can be one of the worst pests a gardener can get in their garden. They might be tiny, but the damage they can cause is extensive – especially with how fast they multiply! But do aphids damage roses, or are they one plant that will remain safe?
Yes, aphids can damage roses. Unfortunately, one of the most common pests for rose bushes is aphids which will swarm around the stem and buds.
Aphids are among the most common threats to roses, compared to other pests or diseases. These pear-shaped soft-bodied bugs can come in various colours and are usually found underneath leaves and clustered around flowers and buds.
Aphids can damage buds, stopping them from developing.
Aphids can also suck a lot of sap from young shoots, making the plant’s foliage wilt and look unhealthy. Aphids also leave a sugary and sticky substance behind called honeydew that often turns black when it attracts fungal spores developing into sooty mould.
Unfortunately, plants with sooty mould will have a lower chance of survival as they can’t absorb light and nutrients.
The fungus that develops sooty mould will feed on the honeydew and spread throughout your roses. The honeydew also attracts ants which scare off valuable pollinators.
Aphids can be green, black, brown, orange, red, or yellow. These bugs can multiply quickly, making their infestation even worse and the damage more destructive. Aphids also transmit viruses whenever they suck sap from a plant.
This is why dealing with any aphid infestation is vital, especially regarding rose plants.
How Do You Get Rid of Aphids on Roses?
Aphids can damage roses very quickly. They multiply fast, and their damage is destructive. Ensure the infestation is taken care of quickly, or the roses will eventually die.
There are two easy and obvious ways to deal with them:
Attract Aphid Predators
One of the easiest ways to deal with an aphid infestation on your roses is to plant herbs and plants that specifically attract aphid predators into your garden and near your roses so they can do the job of getting rid of the aphids from your roses for you.
Aphids have several predators, and with them, you can sit back and wait for all the aphids to perish without doing anything yourself.
Even though they are very tiny, ladybird larvae can eat five times as many aphids as their size.
To attract ladybirds, you can plant chives, coriander, angelica, geraniums, coreopsis, cosmos, oregano, marigold, yarrow, and Queen Anne’s lace. These plants will attract a lot of ladybirds, and you should plant them near or around your roses.
For lacewings, you don’t have to plant specific other plants as they feed from most of the plants a ladybird would. Adult lacewings are three-quarters of an inch in size.
Similar to ladybird larvae, lacewing larvae also loves eating aphids. Lacewing larvae are half an inch and are brownish; they’re tapered from the front and behind and are chubby in the middle.
Lacewings and their larvae are harmless to you and your plants and keep them healthy by killing off the aphids to ensure nothing wrong happens to them.
Avoid the use of insecticides or pesticides that may kill lacewings and ladybirds. Ladybirds and lacewings like moisture, so spray the plants with a bit of water so ladybirds and lacewings will think of them as a favourable living habitat.
Use a Hose
Suppose you see several aphids clustered on your roses whenever you check on your garden plants. One deterrent you can use in this case is a hose. Using an adjustable nozzle, you can simply spray off the aphids from the roses.
The best time to spray aphids is in the daytime; spray them in the morning as there’s enough time before the evening sets in for the sun to dry the plants off.
After you’ve sprayed once, you might have to spray the aphids the next day with a hose. Ensure you don’t shower your plants with waves of water as it can damage the flowers and foliage.
Try the gentlest spray setting first, and if that’s not working, slowly increase the force until the aphids start falling off.
How Do You Protect Roses from Aphids?
It’s better to secure your garden plants from an aphid infestation from ever occurring, or if your roses or any other plants have already been infested with aphids, it’s best to do something about it when there are only a few of them as aphid populations can quickly increase.
Firstly, to protect your roses, you must closely inspect your garden plants every once a week.
As aphids that commonly attack roses are either pink or green, a couple of them will be easy to spot. Visiting your garden plants daily and keeping a close eye out for any signs of an aphid infestation will keep your garden plants safe and sound.
Whenever you’re in your garden, checking for pests, lean on the roses, smell them and keep your eyes wide open to see any uninvited aphids.
Check the underside of leaves and developing buds, as these are the favourite places for an aphid. If you see an aphid, and if it’s only one or two, you can simply pick them up and dispose of them.
Fed Up With Aphids Ruining Plants?
We’ve Put Together a Complete and Free Guide on How to GET RID Aphids Once and For All! – Including 5 Deterrents to Try:
Do you have further questions about aphids and the damage they can cause to your roses? Then check these FAQs out:
Yes, green fly is the name for a particular type of aphid. If you can see small green flies around the flower heads and stems of your rose bushes, then chances are they are green flies.
Unfortunately, aphids are the least fussy pests in the garden, and they will damage all types of roses, including shrub, climbing and trailing roses.
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Anna is a keen organic gardener, avoiding any forms of chemicals when growing both flowers and vegetables meaning she has extensive knowledge on how to deal with pests naturally