Diseases in Roses

Although roses are a hardy group of plants they can suffer from a number of diseases. Some varieties are more resistant to diseases than others, however with proper planting many problems can be eliminated. If you can identify the disease you can find a number of treatments to prevent or sole the problems.

How to Prevent Rose Diseases

Some of the most important ways of preventing diseases in all roses are :

  • Good air flow, this helps dry out the foliage after rain and prevent fungal diseases.
  • Good drainage, this helps prevent root damage
  • Cleaning up any dropped foliage and after pruning, again this helps prevent disease.
  • Healthy soil and appropriate fertilizer, these promote strong growth and healthy plants.
  • Good sun every day, again this is a major factor in healthy growth and preventing many fungal diseases.

Types of diseases in Roses

Fungal Diseases in Roses.


  • Blackspot on roses is a fungal disease that thrives in warm humid conditions. Black or Purple spots appear on the leaves.
  • Control of Black Spot on Roses –
  • Avoid watering the foliage.Try spraying with a mixture of bicarb soda water and dish washing liquid. 2tsp bi carb, 1gall of water 2-3 drops of dish washing liquid.

Powdery Mildew

  • Powdery Mildew on roses is another fugal disease caused by warm humid conditions. It takes the form of white powdery covering on buds and stems.
  • Control of Powdery Mildew on Roses –
  • Plant roses in a sunny position. Fungicides are available, consult your local Garden Centre.


  • Rust is another fungal disease that appears as orange or red spots leaves. Rust thrives in cool moist conditions.
  • Control of rust on roses. –
  • Some roses are more rust resistant than others. Plant roses with adequate sun and air circulation. remove and burn rust affected leaves and branches. Sulphur spays and fungicidal soaps are two treatments available.

Mosaic Virus

  • Mosaic virus is a serious disease on roses, it appears as yellow spots or variations in the foliage
  • Control of Mosaic Virus. –
  • Best to remove the plant and burn it so as not to let it spread. Consult your local expert to identify Mosaic Virus.