Rose Rosette attack!

Thanks to our Master Gardener class, we learned that one of our roses was terminally ill. Even worse, the disease was highly contagious and could be transmitted through the soil to the other roses close by. How super not awesome is that? Gracias a nuestra clases de Maestros de Jardineria, aprendimos que una de nuestras rosas tenia una enfermedad terminal. Aun peor, la enfermedad es sumamente contagiosa y podia ser transmitida por el suelo a otras rosas en la cercania. Que super no genial verdad?


The disease is called rose rosette, and it is characterized by irregular growth, soft branches full of hundreds of soft thorns, and flowers that never develop. The cure? There isn’t one! Removal and disposal of the infected plant is a method of prevention, that’s it! La enfermedad se llama rosette de rosa, y se caracteriza por crecimiento irregular, ramas blandas llenas de espinas blandas, y flore que nunca se desarrollan. La cura? No hay cura! Remover y botar la planta infectada es el metodo de prevencion, eso es todo!


 The day after our class, we bought a new rose and replaced the sick plant. We had to make sure to remove every little piece of tissue of the old plant, even small pieces of root that could remain in the ground and infect the new rose. So we dug an oversized hole and removed everything with it. Hopefully we did a good enough job to protect the new plant. Asi que eal otro dia despues de la clase, compramos una nueva rosa y la reemplazamos por la planta enferma. Nos tuvimos que asegurar de removed todo pedacito y tejido de la planta, incluso pedacitos de raiz que puedieran quedar en la tierra que pueden infectar la nueva planta. Asi que escave un hoyo enorme y lo saque todo. Ojala hize el trabajo lo suficientemente bien para proteger a la nueva rosa.



We were bummed to find out that our rose was sick, but what’s worse is that we bought the rose when it had clear signs of disease. At the time we didn’t know anything about roses and we thought this was just a different kind of rose…oh silly us. But now we know better, and hopefully this quick post will prevent others from buying bad plants or help them realize that they need remove infected plants asap (informed consumers!). Happy gardening! Es lo peor descrubrir que una de tus rosas esta enferma, pero aun peor es el hecho que compramos la planta son las senales de enfermedad. En ese entonces no sabiamos nada de rosas y pensamos que era simplemente un tipo distinto de rosa….que tontos nosotros. Pero ahora sabemos, y esperamos que este post prevenga a otras personas de comprar plantas infectadas o les ayuda a darse cuenta que necesitan remover una de sus plantas lo antes posible . Disfruten su jardin!


15 responses to “Rose Rosette attack!”

  1. That is good information to know. I have never seen this disease in Alaska. There are many wild roses that grow all over in the forests and many people keep roses in town. Strange.

    • It’s a relatively new disease – and the strangest part is that it mostly targets knockout roses, which are supposed to be disease resistant!! Definitely keep an eye out because it’s very contagious. Knockout roses are very popular in TN, but I’m not sure about Alaska!

  2. And shame on sellers that allow diseased roses to go to unsuspecting customers! I suppose they just don’t know any better?

    • It was a shame you’re right! And we got them from a nursery here in town that is supposed to be organic and professional. I won’t say who the nursery is because we do still like them and want to stay in business, but I did feel a little cheated 😦

  3. Good info! I hate when my plants get sick. Last year we had a tomato fungus that killed almost all of them, which is sad because they are Matt’s favorite crop. I also just bought a house plant that is infected with some horrible fungus that I was told may have already spread to my other plants! These little buggers are nothing to mess around with 😦

  4. As a rose lover (who has learned what little bit she knows here and there from various books and tv shows on gardening), I appreciate this info very much! I’ll be sure to be on the look-out for any of these signs.

    • We have 4 bushes now – I love them. Already have tons of blooms, and no signs of the disease on any of the other roses. Yay spring!

  5. Yeah, rose rosette disease is actually a virus that is transmitted by a tiny, microscopic mite that can float around in the air currents. I didn’t know that Knock Out Roses were particularly susceptible. Bummer! And they’ve been used in landscaping all over,

    • yeah it’s a real bummer! We bought them because they were so disease resistant. But the other roses we have don’t show any signs, so that’s good! thanks for the info! 🙂

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