Roses forum: Spraying soap solution

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7b
Tkhan
Jul 3, 2017 6:57 AM CST
Hi all
Can I spray soap solution on my roses during day It's going to be 86 f today but I have no time and noticed some worms under my rose leaves and of course the WHITE FLIES that I've been trying to get rid of by neem oil
So I thought if I could spray soap solution Anyone ??
Minnesota (Zone 3b)
RpR
Jul 6, 2017 10:24 PM CST
Your soap solution consists of what?
Household soaps can harm new growth and hardwater can affect its effectiveness so distilled water is best.
Wash the plant off with clean water after the solution dries..
7b
Tkhan
Jul 7, 2017 7:28 AM CST
Thank You!
Name: Steve
Prescott, AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: Southwest Gardening Roses Irises Lilies
Image
Steve812
Jul 23, 2017 10:24 AM CST
White flies. Yes, I'd like to know how to get rid of them, too. I, too, have noticed that neem doesn't work.

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FWIW... Backgrounder on RpR advice. Soaps kill insects via two mechanisms. One, mentioned in a few articles on the topic, is to disintigrate or disrupt the waxy covering on insect pests. This would cause them to dehydrate in warm, low humidity weather. The other, not mentioned in the articles I've read, is to cause water to wet the waxy coatings of the pests, causing the water to flow into breathing pores, effectively suffocating the insects on contact. Either way, the insect is only affected when it is covered with the solution. It seems to me that any soap or detergent will succeed in accomplishing the second goal. (It's fiendishly hard to hit those whiteflies once they are airborne, though.)

A number of articles suggest that soaps are more effective than detergents, but there is no explanation of why this should be true. Nor is there any citation.I'm skeptical. It is possible that some detergents are too harsh for plants. In any case, it seems to be a good idea to start with one of the several insecticidal soap solutions designed for plant use. It is reasonable to assume that they have a better balance between doing harm to insects and avoiding harm to plants than would be the case with most homemade recipes. This article suggests that commercial solutions are better than ones made from the first random soapy thing you grab off the bathroom shelf to make your own. http://www.clemson.edu/extensi...

Soap - technically a sodium (or potassium) salt of a fatty acid will, indeed, react with calcium carbonate disolved in water, forming a fine curd. So people who have hard water should use distilled water (probably not softened water brcause of its elevated sodium content.) Soaps designed for plant insecticidal use such as Safer use potassium as the alkaline agent rather than sodium which is used in pretty much every hand soap because it's cheaper. Sodium can harm plants, but potassium is a primary plant nutrient. Safer soap also comes in a formulation with pyrethrins which would persist after the water has evaporated, making it easier to affect those pesky little flying critters. But in this case, one would not wash off the leaves.

Waxes are also used by plants to manage moisture loss and wetting of leaves, so anything that dissolves the waxes on an insect has the potential to do the same on plants. This is why one would rinse off the leaves of the plant after using the insecticidal soap. I think the question of temperature is a good one, but I might suggest that relative humidity plays a role here, too. Might be very bad to use insecticidal soap at 9:00 AM on a day when it will be 105F, intensely bright sun, and 20% relative humidity. Might be okay to use insecticidal soap in the waning hours of the afternoon when it's 75 F, 65% RH and partly cloudy. There must be a dividing line somewhere in between.




When you dance with nature, try not to step on her toes.
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
RoseBlush1
Jul 24, 2017 3:52 PM CST
Steve ....

I think you are doing a bit of over-thinking ... Smiling

Oils / fats cannot be washed off with just plain water. You can test this quite easily. Just spray some insecticidal soap on a piece of lettuce and try to wash it off with plain water. It doesn't wash off, even when applied at cooler temps.
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Name: Steve
Prescott, AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: Southwest Gardening Roses Irises Lilies
Image
Steve812
Jul 24, 2017 6:46 PM CST
You mean the part about spraying soap solution on flying whiteflies, of course. I think I need video instruction. Is there a YouTube video on this?
When you dance with nature, try not to step on her toes.
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
RoseBlush1
Jul 24, 2017 7:29 PM CST
Steve ...

I was thinking about spraying with any product for any purpose containing fat or oil in it on foliage when temps are likely to reach or exceed 85F.

Keep in mind, they may have come up with products or formulas may have changed since the last time I did research on this topic, so there may be some new information I am not up to speed on at this time.

Then you also have to add in the other variables. There's 85F and there's 85F. 85F in a humid climate is different from 85F in an arid climate. 85F in direct sun is different from 85F in shade. Are you applying the product to young foliage or more mature foliage ? On and on and on. Only the gardener can determine what is going on in his or her garden. Everything else is a "rule of thumb".

What I was trying to say in my post is that fat / oil does not wash off with just water. You can't apply the product and plan to wash it off, if temps are going to go up.

I haven't read about any product of that nature that says it has to be reapplied after it has rained. That would be the only kind of product that could be washed off with just water.

The rule of thumb is not to spray anything on foliage that has fat or oil in it, if temps are going to be 85F or higher within 6 to 8 weeks. That does not take into consideration any other variable.
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Name: Steve
Prescott, AZ (Zone 7b)
Region: Southwest Gardening Roses Irises Lilies
Image
Steve812
Jul 25, 2017 12:10 PM CST
Lyn,

Thanks for the info.

It sounds like your mental framework about the issue generally parallels mine. I would suggest that there is a chemical difference between a soap and a fat or oil. A soap actually has a rather high solubility in water compared with a fat. I'm not going to claim that you can wash it all off. In fact, the issue of washing was not my idea. I cannot, however, assert that washing a useless practice in cases where one is concerned about plant safety. At very least washing wets the surface of the plant and may help a little in minimizing stress when marginal conditions prevail.

I ended up buying Safer Soap with pyrethrins for my whitefly infestation, which I would never have done without taking the time to over-think the problem a bit. I will spray the hibiscus in question and the potting soil surface around this indoor plant and hope for the best.
When you dance with nature, try not to step on her toes.
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
RoseBlush1
Jul 25, 2017 12:26 PM CST
Steve ...

Forgive me .. I thought you were talking about spraying roses outside ... *Blush*

Since my comment was addressing a different issue, no you were NOT over-thinking. I would have followed the same path you did.
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
Name: Frank Mosher
Nova Scotia, Canada (Zone 6a)
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Birds Roses Clematis Lilies Peonies
Region: Canadian Photo Contest Winner: 2017 Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
fwmosher
Apr 10, 2018 11:00 AM CST
"Let old dogs lie": - Rose "Sawfly" Slugs revisited.

In my very early days in participating in these great forums, I made an assertion, based entirely upon my use of BTK for years, for total control for "Rose Slugs" AND yes, they are neither "caterpillars or slugs". I was so startled, heck no, insulted, by a couple responses, that I lost my composure, and became personal in my replies, for which I believe I apologized.

With respect to sawfly rose slugs and spraying with BTK, I noticed that "Safer" has a spray formulation offering now, containing BTK. It got me thinking again about the initial discussion, and I thought I would Google Wikipedia to see if there is anything new on the subject. Well there is, and here is a brief paraphrase of the first two paragraphs, which may be of interest, and after reading through a whack of the footnote papers, this is the easiest part, believe me:

"Upon sporulation, (release of spores), B. thuringiensis forms crystals of proteinaceous insecticidal δ-endotoxins (called crystal proteins or Cry proteins), which are encoded by cry genes.[13] In most strains of B. thuringiensis, the cry genes are located on a plasmid (cry is not a chromosomal gene in most strains).[14][15][16]

Cry toxins have specific activities against insect species of the orders Lepidoptera (moths and butterflies), Diptera (flies and mosquitoes), Coleoptera (beetles), Hymenoptera (wasps, bees, ants and sawflies) and against nematodes.[17][18] "
There is only one reference in the literature that I can find which negates this, and that is from I believe the University of Michigan. I have written same, but have not heard back.
So, I know it works, I can see the corpses on some of the leaves a day after spraying. To each his/her own.Here's to growing Roses.
Name: Lyn
Weaverville, California (Zone 8a)
Garden Ideas: Level 1 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
RoseBlush1
Apr 10, 2018 11:38 AM CST
Frank ...

I am so glad you had the time to do further research.

Not every solution works in every climate. In my climate I never have that window when temps are not going to soar up into the high 90s for a few days and then drop to normal spring temps, so I have been reluctant to spray anything with a sticker that may include any kind of oil or fat outside in the garden.

In garden climates without my extreme temperature fluctuations, they may be able to use the newer products.

As I mentioned on another forum, I am experimenting with washing sawfly eggs off of the leaves and changing out the mulch. I should have done that in the past, but I've used decomposing leaves to feed my soil and just added new mulch on top of it.

It's a real hassle, so if a garden is located where they can use the newer product safely, it sounds like a step forward.
I'd rather weed than dust ... the weeds stay gone longer.
7b
Tkhan
Apr 10, 2018 11:52 AM CST
It is very difficult to target the white flies when spraying them with anything They hop away !!!
I tried several products and I ended up getting more powdery mildew and black spot
I feel the more I sprayed my roses the sicker they got
So I decided to leave them alone and let them fight their own n battle
However my roses are in containers and I am new to gardening
So I'll repot them this time and leave them alone
7b
Tkhan
Apr 10, 2018 2:19 PM CST
Sorry
I said white flies but they are actually leaf hoppers !!!!
Name: Frank Mosher
Nova Scotia, Canada (Zone 6a)
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Birds Roses Clematis Lilies Peonies
Region: Canadian Photo Contest Winner: 2017 Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
fwmosher
May 5, 2018 8:46 AM CST
Leaf Hoppers in hatching stage, show up, invariably, in a small bubble nest right under a bud or flower. If you squish the bubble nest in your fingers, you will see the almost full grown yellow-to green Leaf Hopper. Then, squish to make certain that one won't go on to start a family. Cheers!
7b
Tkhan
May 5, 2018 9:34 AM CST
Thanks will try it this time if the nasty creatures appear

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