Fight mildew on roses

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Fight mildew on roses: fight

There are various measures that help to remove the white coating on the rose petals. But it is also helpful to make sure in advance that this plant disease does not even come to an outbreak.

Different types of mildew

Anyone who detects mildew on his roses should take a close look. Because there are two different types of this fungal attack, which is also called fair weather mushroom. Both variants have the same spread over spores, which form a dense network of very fine fibers on the plant. Experts also call this mycelium.
Both the so-called "powdery mildew" and "downy mildew" forms on the roses, a white to gray fur, which is mainly visible on the top of the leaves. This can still be easily wiped with a damp cloth. However, if the infestation is more pronounced, the buds and shoot tips are usually affected and crippled. The leaves of infested rose plants appear arched bulging and brown at the tips. This stops the growth of the roses.

Rapid spread under special climatic conditions

Right downy mildew on roses shows above all in phases with nice, dry weather, which, however, is accompanied by nocturnal dew. It is therefore clear that especially sunny days in spring and autumn create the ideal living conditions for this fungal infestation. If nothing was done to combat this pest until late autumn, dark winter fruit bodies form, which can hibernate in leaves and plant remains on the ground.

Downy mildew is not always obvious

In contrast to the whitish coating of the right mildew, the downy mildew mainly forms reddish-purple spots on the upper leaf surface of the roses. There may be yellow and brown spots on the leaves that are bordered by leaf veins. On the underside of the leaves, on the other hand, forms a gray fungus coating, which feels soft. The infestation with downy mildew can lead so far that even buds and shoots of the roses are attacked.
In contrast to the warm and dry conditions that the right mildew needs for growth, downy mildew spreads especially in humid and moderately warm climates. An excessive nitrogen content in the soil of the plant contributes to the infestation of this pest. Those who would like to protect themselves against the mildew when buying their rose plants, should pay attention to a declaration of the plant with the wording "against race 1 - 26". This means that the roses are immune to certain subspecies of the fungus, which is constantly developing new resistance.

Combating mildew with simple home remedies

Many garden owners and plant lovers, it is a concern to spare their garden of chemical clubs in pesticides. If you are worried because your roses are mildewed, you can also use simple home remedies:
  • Above all, milk has proven itself here, with fresh milk being used in particular.
  • Simply mix a portion of milk with nine parts of water and spray this mixture up close to the infested plants.
  • The microorganisms contained in the milk fight fungal infestation very successfully, which also makes clear why it has to be fresh milk and that H-milk is not suitable for use.
  • The lecithin contained in the milk acts against the mildew and the sodium phosphate strengthens the immune system of the rose plant.
  • This achieves two important results with a relatively simple measure, which should be carried out if necessary about two to three times a week.


In general, a natural resistance of the rose plant offers the best protection against fungal attack. Especially in bedding and shrub roses, but also in soil-covering varieties, there are already many varieties that have a low susceptibility to pests such as mildew. Those who prefer roses and tea hybrids, must know that in these genera, the resistance breeding is still rather at the beginning and therefore individual measures are to be taken by the garden owner himself. Generally recommended:
  • regular removal of plant residues
  • Separation of affected parts of plants and safe disposal
  • Clean garden tools or growth aids as meticulously, preferably with an antiseptic
  • always wear gloves when treating sick roses
  • Apply chemical pesticides only directly on the diseased rose

Prevention is better than treat

As in many other areas, the healthy and beautiful growth of roses in the garden is based on the principle that prevention is more effective than the best pesticide in afterthought. Already with the selection of the plants one can make provision here, in which one considers exactly how the soil and sun conditions are at the planting place.
In addition to regular care and fertilization, the regular pruning of the plants should also be undertaken, as this is a promotional measure for the health and growth of the plant and does not look as radical as a plant incision intended to eliminate diseased or infested plant parts. Most of all, the rose is recovering very slowly and slowly.
With the individual care tips and observing the rose growth and the flower development can be prevented harmful infestation like the mildew. This not only saves time and money, but also gives the rose a long healthy life, rewarding it with gorgeous flowers in all its colors.

Find out more about Rose mildew in brief

  • Mildew is a collective name for various plant diseases caused by fungi.
  • It usually occurs on the leaf surfaces through a white coating, the so-called mushroom grass.
A distinction is made between the real and the downy mildew: The pathogens of powdery mildew belong to the ascomycetes and mainly attack leaves. First, the leaves are covered with a floury coating and later turn brown, until they dry up and fall off. The downy mildew is one of the fungi and penetrates this into the plant. He shows himself by a white coating on the underside of the leaves.
  • In agriculture and horticulture, fungicides of chemical structure are used against the various mildews.
  • Powdery mildew fungus is typically used with a sulfur based plant protection product.
While mildew is detrimental to plants, an intact ecosystem requires mildew for some ladybug species, for example. The sixteen-spot, twenty-two point and sixteen-point ladybugs feed exclusively on mildew, making this plant disease vital to these species.

Roses from powdery mildew have been particularly prevalent in the German gardens. Very sensitive rose varieties can be greatly weakened by this disease. The fungal spores spread through the wind and needed to germinate moist leaves. For this the nightly dew formation is already completely sufficient.

  • In order to prevent a powdery mildew, roses should only be planted in a moist and nutrient-rich soil in a sunny location.
  • The soil should be particularly rich in potassium, because it strengthens the defenses of roses.
  • Furthermore, susceptible roses should stand as bright as possible and be poured little.
  • In support of this you should strengthen the plants with fertilizer and repot them into a fresh container.
  • The leaves should be kept dry and therefore protected from rain.
An old home remedy for mildew is baking soda and oil, which is mixed together and dusted on the plant. Mix three packets of baking soda with 50 ml of edible oil and add a few drops of dishwashing detergent as an emulsifier, spraying endangered plants with it every evening for ten to 14 days. Quickly disappears the floury surface and what looks like damaged after a few days, you can just cut out.
Basically, you need a lot of patience to fight mildew, but you should not wait too long in an infestation, because quickly the rose is weakened and withered.

Video Board: How to Get Rid of Powder Mildew on Roses : Garden Space.

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