Got roses? They’re at the peak of bloom right now. Hopefully, they’re free of the ugly disease called rust, that loves the cool, moist morning temperatures.
This fungal disease is easy to identify – look for orange, powdery pustules on the undersides of leaves. Early in the season they’re yellow to light orange, with the color deepening to reddish-brown in summer. Over time, the upper sides of the leaves may discolor and drop. If leaf drop is severe, it may weaken the plant over time, reducing flower production and overall vigor. To manage this disease:
- Buy and plant disease-free plants
- Choose resistant varieties; varieties with glossy foliage generally have better resistance to most fungal diseases
- Plant roses in areas with good soil drainage and ventilation; avoid shady spots and dense plantings
- Maintain good garden sanitation; remove and destroy infected leaves and canes during the season
- Avoid overhead watering if time / temperature is insufficient to dry leaves within a few hours