Aphids On Roses: How To Fight Aphids Naturally

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The queen of the flower is a popular victim of lice. We reveal how to successfully fight aphids on roses, which household remedies help and how to prevent lice on roses.

Are you already looking forward to the splendid colors and the unique scent of your roses in summer? But as soon as the first flower buds are seen, you make an unpleasant discovery: deformed, shiny, and sticky leaves.

These are typical symptoms of aphid infestation because leaves and flowers can be severely damaged by such an infestation. Aphids suck on the sugary phloem juice of roses and thus weaken the growth of the shoot. A severe aphid infestation can even lead to the death of the bud.

To save the fragrant blossoms in summer, we will show you how to detect aphid infestation, combat aphids on roses in an environmentally friendly way, and prevent a new infestation. In addition to various household remedies, there are also very effective ecological methods to control aphids on roses.

Aphids On Roses

Once a few aphids have found their way to your roses, they can multiply very quickly, so you should check your roses regularly for aphid infestation. But how can you detect an infestation with these little animals? Aphids can usually be seen with the naked eye, close to each other at the tips of shoots and flower attachments.

The aphids are a few millimeters in size and can be green, black, red, or white in color. The green-colored Large Rose Aphid (Macrosiphum rosae) is usually found on roses. Another indication of an aphid infestation is deformed and curled leaves on the shoot tip and hanging flower buds. In case of a severe infestation, flower buds can even be rejected by the plant.

Downward hanging flower buds and shoot tips are caused by the aphids’ sucking activity on the plant, which causes a large local loss of water. Leaves under the aphid groups are often covered with the sticky honeydew that shines in the sun. Whatever sticks the leaves there should actually circulate as a high-energy compound in the plant and nourish its cells.

Because of the sugar on the leaves, black sooty dew fungi like to settle here, which can additionally weaken the plant by hindering photosynthesis.

Tip: The increased occurrence of ants on a plant indicates aphid infestation. Ants eat the honeydew of the aphids, a sugary excretion of the insects. Ants, therefore, protect the aphids from predators and encourage them to suck even more plant sap. In this way, the ants encourage an infestation with the small pests.

By Which Symptoms Do I Recognize Aphids On My Roses?

  • A few millimeters large, mostly green insects at the shoot tip.
  • Deformed and curled leaves.
  • Flower buds and shoot tips hanging down.
  • Sticky and shiny leaves due to honeydew.
  • Sometimes blackish sooty dew fungi on leaves.
  • Increased occurrence of ants on the plant.

Aphids like to stay on young shoots and buds and suck there

Get Rid Of Aphids On Roses: Recommended Measures

What to do if you have discovered an acute aphid infestation in your roses? The aim should be to stop the aphids’ sucking activity as quickly as possible and then get rid of them.

Plant protection products can be divided into biological and synthetic agents. Synthetic agents are potentially harmful to beneficial insects and should therefore not be used in the garden or the home. We recommend that biological measures are always preferred.

A very effective and natural alternative is neem-based remedies, which are extracted from the seeds of the neem tree. These contain an oil that is particularly suitable for combating aphids. The purely herbal active ingredient from the neem oil is absorbed by the aphids during sucking.

The insects lose their appetite after a few hours and stop their sucking activity. The active ingredient also interferes with the growth and development of the aphids, causing them to die.

The active ingredient is distributed throughout the plant, which is why even aphids that sit hidden are affected by the systematic action.

Our Gardender Bio-Pest Free Neem is based on this highly effective Neem oil. It enables you to control aphids on your roses quickly and naturally. The product is simply mixed with water and sprayed onto the affected plant using a spray bottle. Just three milliliters of pest-free mixed with two liters of water are enough to treat twelve roses.

Gardender Bio-Pest Free Neem: The Correct Application

  1. The application directly after detection of infestation, in the morning or evening.
  2. Wear protective clothing and observe the instructions on the package insert.
  3. Mix 3 ml Bio-Pest Free Neem with 2 liters of water to treat approx. 12 roses (do not use more spray liquid than necessary).
  4. Spray with the spray bottle on the affected plant.
  5. Distribute any residues on plants and do not dispose of the wastewater.
  6. After heavy rainfall, repeat the treatment soon.

Household Remedy Against Lice On Roses

Especially in case of a slight infestation of aphids on roses, you can also use home remedies to control the small animals. We introduce you to the two most effective household remedies.

Household Remedy 1: Soapsuds

The most commonly used household remedy against aphids on roses is soft soap. For this purpose, prepare a soap solution with fragrance-free pure curd soap or soft soap. With liquid soap, a mixing ratio of 200 milliliters of soap to one liter of water is suitable. Other washing-up liquids are not suitable, however, as these could damage the plants.

The soap suds are then spread over the entire infested area using a sprayer. This creates a film of lye, under which the aphids run out of air. You will achieve a good effect if the soap suds are sprayed several times a day. When your roses are no longer visibly infested with lice, you can stop the treatment.

How to use soap suds against aphids on roses:

  • Soap-suds with curd soap or soft soap from 200 ml of liquid soap to one liter of water.
  • Spray several times a day on the infested plant parts.

One of the most popular household remedies against aphids is curd soap

Household Remedy 2: Nettle Broth

Stinging nettles can not only be unpleasant for humans but also help to fight lice on roses. You can easily make such a stinging nettle brew yourself:

Soak about 500 grams of fresh, green nettles in a pot of five liters of boiling water. Stir the mixture a few times with a wooden spoon, then let it cool down and steep for 24 hours. The active ingredients from the nettles, such as formic acid, are dissolved from the leaves in this way.

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Afterward, the brew can be strained with a fine sieve to prevent the spray bottle from clogging later. You can now spray the brew undiluted onto the affected areas with a spray bottle. You should repeat this treatment several times a day until your roses are no longer infested with lice.

On days with prolonged sunshine, it is best to postpone the treatments until the morning and evening hours to avoid burning the leaves. The nettle broth not only frees your roses from aphids but also contains active ingredients, such as silica, which at the same time strengthen your plant.

Tip: The filtered out nettle leaves can be used dried as a mulch layer in your rose bed. The remaining nettle liquid can be mixed with water in a ratio of 1:20 and used as liquid fertilizer, as you can read in our article on nettle liquid manure.

How to use nettle liquid against aphids on roses:

  • Stinging nettle liquid from 500 g fresh nettles and five liters of boiling water.
  • Spray several times a day on the affected plant parts.

Nettle broth is a natural way to drive away aphids

Prevent Aphids On Roses

Also with the topic of aphid infestation, the motto is: Prevention is better than cure. Aphids have an easy time with weakened plants, which is why they are more often infested. Aphids are more likely to infest weakened plants, which is why you can prevent aphid infestation by strengthening your roses.

Proper rose care is just as important as an optimal supply of nutrients. When fertilizing the roses you should ensure a good supply of potassium, whereas you should reduce the supply of nitrogen. It is also important that you ensure a sufficient magnesium supply.

How about a mixed culture instead of a pure rose bed? Plants with essential oils such as savory, onions, and especially lavender not only drive away aphids but also look good next to the roses. Mixed cultivation of roses and, for example, lavender can prevent your roses from being infested by aphids.

Also, the targeted promotion of beneficial insects against aphids, such as ladybugs, ichneumon flies, or gall midges, can prevent the infestation of your roses. You can promote beneficial insects by setting up nesting aids and making your garden beneficial insect friendly. Beneficial insects can also be purchased and planted, which works especially well in rooms or greenhouses.

In addition, aphids cannot hold on to their host plant very well. If you have only noticed a slight infestation on your plants, you should use a somewhat strong water jet to remove the shoots from the aphids. An infestation often occurs in spring and early summer, it is recommended to check the plants regularly from April onwards.

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What is the best way to prevent aphids on my roses?

  • Mixed culture with fragrant plants, such as lavender or savory.
  • Promote beneficial insects in the garden or use them in a targeted manner.
  • Spray slightly affected shoots with a jet of water.

With these numerous variants, you can successfully fight aphids on your roses. With the help of our professional tips for the correct fertilization of your roses, nothing stands in the way of fragrant bloom.

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