Roses with black spot disease
My rose bushes are exploding with their brilliant red blooms. Deep, satiny, sumptuous flowers they are. I enjoy going out in the mornings and taking a deep breath of their deliciously sweet scent. How lucky I am to have moved into a house with a row of established roses. They're a real treat. I only did a little bit of pruning earlier this year and -- bam! -- we have a flood of roses.
How easy it was, or so I thought.
When I went out a few days ago to get my daily fill of rosy goodness, I noticed that some of the leaves on the undersides of the plants had dark spots and were turning yellow. Those sickly looking leaves would fall from the plant at the slightest touch.
"Is my rose honeymoon over already?" I thought.
this source, it's a fungal disease that can take hold of roses in "warm, damp conditions, especially when leaves have been wet." During the month of May we had, oh, about 9 inches of rain -- ideal conditions for Black Spot. Left unchecked, the disease can weaken an entire rose plant.
With my once-effortless roses suddenly calling for attention, I cut back all of the infected leaves and canes and put all the debris in the trash. I read that one organic method for controlling the spread of Black Spot is to mix a teaspoon of baking soda with a quart of water and spray it on the plants in the morning. If things get worse, I might try that.
On another note, while I was trimming away the sickly leaves, I noticed only 2 bees buzzing along the entire row of roses. ONLY 2 BEES! Where are all the bees?! I know I am not the first gardener to question this. Many garden bloggers, in fact, have been commenting on the bee situation for a while now. But this is the first time I've really noticed so few bees in my own garden.