The Q&A Archives: Ants and Roses

Question: We have two Queen Elizabeth Rose Bushes and it seems that ants are climbing into the cane where it has been pruned back or the bloom has been cut. Is this a something to worry about?

Answer: Having ants in the garden isn't such a bad thing - they cart away dead insects and help transfer pollen when they travel from flower to flower. Ants also like a nice sweet treat. I suspect they're visiting the wounds on your rose canes and stems to drink up some of the escaping fluids from the plant tissues. These fluids are sugary and the ants are probably just enjoying a little snack. The ants won't harm your roses in any way, and they'll stop visiting when the cut stems and canes heal over and stop exuding sap.

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