The Q&A Archives: Climbing roses lost blooms and leaves

Question: Last year my climbing roses suddenly lost their blooms and leaves and by the middle of summer I had 2 sticks growing. Why happened and what should I do this year?

Answer: Disease is the most likely culprit, and it would be difficult to diagnose which disease without more information. For example, blackspot fungus causes black spots on the upper leaf surfaces, then yellowed leaves, finally defoliation. Rust is a fungal disease that causes powdery orange spots on the undersides of the leaves and eventual curling of the leaves. Viruses can cause mottled leaves, yellow circles on leaves and stunted plants.<br><br>As soon as you notice any of these fungus disease symptoms on your roses, remove and destroy any affected leaves and spray your plant with a compost tea. This can be made by putting a gallon of finished compost that contains some manure into a 5-gallon bucket and filling it with water. Leave the mixture in the shade for about 2 weeks, then filter the solution and spray. For best results, spray in the evening and repeat every 3 or 4 days. <br><br>Viral diseases cannot be cured, and plants should be dug up and destroyed. <br><br>Also, since many foliar diseases rely onhigh humidity for spread, water your plants in the morning and prune in the early spring to improve air circulation. <br><br>Good luck this year. <br>spray drift from any nearby plants, lawn or trees being sprayed with herbicides or insecticides. There are several diseases of roses that could be the culprit.

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