Saturday, January 29, 2011

Cures for Black Spot--Follow-up

Before Picture
I apologize for not knowing exactly what variety of rose this bush is, but Pat thinks it's an Antique White.  Nevertheless, as you can see in the "after" picture, it has succumbed to Black Spot.  This rose bush was doing fine until we finally got a little rain back in December.  One day the bush was loaded with spent blooms and green leaves, and the next day all the leaves had fallen off the bush--even the thorns had dropped off!!

After Black Spot

Even though the after picture is not very clear, it is easy to see that there are few leaves on the bush!  Yes, it is wintertime, but the few remaining leaves show that Black Spot was here.  After a little research in my earlier post, I decided to take a few simple action steps.  One of the action steps is to simple inspect the rose bushes once per week.  My next step was to purchase something that works.  Being influenced to be as green of a gardner as possible, I decided to take Grow Green's advice and start with a fungicide that will have very little impact on the environment.  Home Depot did not have the fungicide they recommended, but there was one label that caught my eye.

EcoSmart Organic
Garden Fungicide

Green Remedy

EcoSmart Organic Garden Fungicide is a disease control for roses, flowers and shrubs.  It states it controls Black Spot, Rust, Powdery Mildew, Petal Blight, and other common plant diseases.  It even claims you can "spray and harvest" on the same day.  I do believe that because the ingredients are all natural:  Rosemary Oil (gives a nice-pleasing aroma), Sodium Lauryl Sulfate, and 99% other ingredients!!  This product sells for about $6.00.

I doused the infected rose bush since there are signs of life.  The plant is beginning to leaf out very nicely, and I'm certain the thorns will return as well!  This product is very easy to use.  They suggest spraying the plant every 7 to 10 days or after a rain.  Very easy to remember for me, that's for sure.  This will be a great time to test this product since I am certain we'll be seeing some rain of the next couple of months (at least I hope we will). 

Home Remedy

Here is another very low-cost, home remedy I found today on  The first recommendation is to plant your tomato bushes next to rose bushes as the tomato bushes help reduce Black Spot.  However, if you do not want lovely tomatoes next to your lovely roses, they recommend crushing some tomato leaves and mixing that with water and cornstarch.  They seem to think it's the cornstarch that does the trick.  My only problem is I do not have any tomatoes growing right now, so I'll stick with the EcoSmart for a couple of rounds to see if it will do the trick. 

Please leave a comment if you have any "green" tips for controlling Black Spot.  I am hoping that with regular care, my "after" picture will become my "before" picture once again!

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