In a previous post we gave you some tips for cultivating rose bushes in your yard. Today we’re going to spend a little bit of time talking about how to fight bugs on roses.
Pests like aphids and other bugs are one of the biggest reasons why roses can struggle in a garden. You can opt to use a pest control spray. For example, Garden Safe’s Rose and Flower Insect killer is a well-rated reasonably safe product.
However, there are also some natural, organic methods that you can use if you are uncomfortable with the idea of spraying your rose bushes down with a chemical. Here are four methods that you can try.
Enlist the Aid of Helping Insects
A good, solid aphid predator may just do the trick. You can actually purchase ladybugs, lacewings, or praying mantises for your garden.
These bugs will be happy to feast on your pests. If you actually enjoy the presence of either one of these predator insects then this would be a great solution.
It’s also fairly economical. You can get 300 live ladybugs for about $6 and you can order them online. If you opt for lacewings or praying mantises you’ll pay about $17 and you’ll be paying for eggs which will hatch around your garden.
Become a Haven for Birds
Birds prey on aphids, so you can also encourage birds to enter your garden. Set up a bird feeder and a bird bath in your garden and offer a clear line of sight to your rose bushes.
Put out enough birdseed to encourage the birds but don’t put out so much that they are inclined to ignore the aphids. You simply want to entice them.
If you love birdsong and enjoy the sight of birds then this is a stellar option.
Use Dish Detergent
If you absolutely feel the need to tend to your roses and to control the flood of pests yourself you can try dish detergent, which is a safe, mild alternative to harsher chemicals. You’ll need a spray bottle.
Just add one tablespoon of liquid dish soap to your spray bottle, fill it with water, and shake it up. Then, lightly spritz your roses with the soapy mixture every two weeks.
It won’t hurt the roses, and it will discourage the insects.
Be Sure to Prune Your Garden
Dead or diseased leaves, canes, and other vegetation act as a beacon to bugs that want to feast on your roses. You can fight bugs by adding things they don’t like, but you can also fight them by removing things that they do like.
Make sure you discard the results of this pruning well away from your roses. Otherwise the bugs will just be drawn to the compost.
Roses may have a finicky reputation, but there’s no denying that they can do amazing things for your landscaping. If your passion for roses is growing, don’t forget to reach out to the Milwaukee Rose Society, too. These rose garden experts are happy to help any new enthusiasts.
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