Spraying Fungicide

AuGres, MI(Zone 5b)

Is anyone spraying yet? I started in April and have been spraying about every ten to fourteen days. Is this enough? Too much? I sure don't want black spot if I can help it. What do you all use to spray your roses with? I had some special rose fungicide already so I'll use that up. If I run out I thought I'd try the baking soda with oil and water spray. I'm in zone 5/Michigan.

(Zone 9a)

For blackspot, I'd say it's never too early to start spraying. An ounce of prevention.......

I'm ashamed to say I haven't kept my spray regime up as I should. I noticed today that some of my bushes are showing powdery mildew and BS. I use the baking soda solution every 2 weeks.....well, almost. :)

AuGres, MI(Zone 5b)

We're supposed to get rain every day next week. Do you think I should repeat the fungicide spray after the last day of rain even if it will only be a week since I last sprayed? Can you hurt the roses by spraying them with this too often? What is the exact formula for the baking powder spray again? I'm not sure if I have hort. oil or not. Did someone say they use vegetable oil? I only use olive oil :) Would just plain baking powder and water work?

(Zone 7a)

The recipe is 1 teaspoon of baking soda, a few drops of liquid soap, and 1 quart of water. I don't add oil.

AuGres, MI(Zone 5b)

Thanks Lantana!

I'll remember that. I have lots of baking soda as I use that to clean my drains with along with vinegar so I will use that when the rose fungicide I have runs out. It is rather expensive. I think I paid around $10 for a small bottle of the stuff. Baking soda would be much cheaper.

(Zone 5a)

This is a recipe from Jerry Baker for black spot remover.
"When black spots attacks your roses, fight back with a weapon you gather from your gaarden:

15 tomato leaves
2 small onions
1/4 cup of rubbing alcohol

Chop the tomato leaves and onions into very,very fine pieces, and steep them in the alcohol overnight. Apply to your rose bushes with a small, spong-type paintbrush, hitting the tops and bottoms of all the leaves."
That's just a little bit too much work for me so instead of painting it on with a brush I just add a little water to the above recipe and use a hand held sprayer bottle and spray top and bottom leaves. Now since this is the first time I have used this spray I can't say how well it works but I combine this method with the garden clean-up spray and so far it seems to be working. Here in Columbus, Ohio we have had rain everyday for the last seven weeks so I have to spray almost every other day. I hope this helps your roses.

Fort Smith, AR(Zone 7a)

I've been using Rose FLora and Wilt-Pruf for three years now and it has been an effective program for me. It's an organic program cause I hate to use chemicals. One advantage to using the spreader/sticker is it helps keep the fungicide in place even if it rains several hours after application. I spray every ten days...actually my husband sprays every ten days, bless his heart.

Kill Pests, but Keep it Clean
Hope this helps. Saw this posted on another form and found it quite interesting.
By John Starnes, Jr
In 1976 I was a mushroom-crazed Ybor City hippie/art major/gardener renting the home at 5706 Suwanee in Seminole Heights in Tampa. Many of my neighbors were delightful, wise, elderly women who shared with me their Depression-era gardening secrets, plus cuttings of Tampa’s infamous “Cracker Rose”. Perhaps my favorite is a non-toxic homemade elixir that cheaply and effectively nukes aphids, spider mites, mealy bugs, scale, powdery mildew and blackspot on most plants, including roses.
What is it? Colgate’s Octagon All-Purpose Soap, old-fashioned lye soap these women also used on stained shirt collars and in the mouths of children caught using naughty language. Dissolved in hot water, this true soap (most soap these days are detergents) can still be found in some grocery stores and is a Florida rose grower’s dream come true.

Back then it wasn’t called Organic gardening. Octagon was just a cheap, tried-and-true commonsense gardening aid-just splash the used dish and laundry water on the plants with bug and fungus problems.

To make a small batch of Octagon soap spray, rub the soap bar against a cheese grater, then dissolve 1 heaping teaspoon of soap flakes in 1 gallon of very hot tap water in an old plastic milk jug. Let it sit a couple of days, shaking the jug daily to dissolve lumps Then pour the spray into a spray bottle or garden pump sprayer, and spray!

To make a big batch of concentrate for future use, leave the bar in the wrapper, lay it on the sidewalk and tap it with a hammer until fully broken up. Tear open the wrapper, then pour the crumples into a wide-mouth gallon container. Fill that with very hot tap water and let it sit a week, stirring daily. (I also like to run it through my blender to get out all the lumps, plus get a clean blender.) You’ll end up with 1 gallon of a soap paste concentrate that keeps just about forever in a lidded container. To make a batch of spray, dissolve 1 cup of this concentrate in 1 gallon of warm water, then pour it into your sprayer. Thus, an inexpensive bar of soap will make 16 gallons of a very effective fungicide and insecticide that won’t harm the environment or make your rose petals toxic in case you like to make rose petal tea or jam.

How does it work? The lye content of the soap (potassium hydroxide) alkalinizes the rose leaf surface, but powdery mildew and blackspot fungi need an acidic leaf cuticle to grow on. In addition, as a soap, it helps rinse them off. This alkalinity also helps sweeten the soil while supplying the plant nutrient potassium. Just be sure to aim the spray at the undersides of the leaf where the blackspot fungus lives, and to spray the bush until dripping for total coverage. Try doing this two to four times a month if you have time.

What’s cool is that the fats in the soapy water (true soap is fat plus lye) help suffocate the bugs by plugging up their breathing holes and permeating their chitinus exoskeletons.

Aphids on new growth? Spider mites on the leaf undersides? Mealy bugs or scale on the stems? Just spray the bush down until it drips. Quite often, the wings coverings of our garden allies, the ladybugs and lacewings, seem to spare them by acting as umbrellas. Perhaps thrips, if caught early enough, would also succumb to this fine old soap.

Okay, it’s 2000, and not 1976, and I am less crazed and happily middle-aged now, but I’m sure that more and more folks have entered the new millennium wishing for less toxic ways to grow their favorite flower. So a century-old secret deserves to be better known and tried before we resort to expensive sprays than kill many unintended and valuable inhabitants of our yards and gardens while adding to the burden of poisons endured by our own bodies, the groundwater, and that gorgeous Tampa Bay and Gulf of Mexico.

Reprinted from American Rose Rambler #39, May/June 2001, Peter Schneider, editor, via Reprinted from Forest City Forum, newsletter of the Forest City (Ohio) Rose Society, John Barko, editor, via The Thorny Bush, newsletter of the Huntington (West Virginia) Rose Society, Monica and Gary Rankins, editors.

Olive Branch, MS(Zone 7b)

I've tried lots of "home remedies", and most are bunkum. Baking soda has been shown to help with powdery mildew, but I can tell you that it does nothing for MS blackspot! It may be more effective in a shorter warm season area that has less humidity, but not here with our thousand different strains of BS.

I can tell you what does work: BannerMaxx, Mancozeb, Funginex, Immunox, Compass, Daconil, etc. For disease prone varieties, spray each week as soon as you see foliage with a different fungicide, and your roses will be BS free.

If you choose not to spray chemical fungicides, then your best bet is to choose disease resistant varieties, not to burn your foliage with everything under your kitchen sink, most of which is just as dangerous as any chemical fungicide. Most disease resistant varieties won't be available at your local nursery. Mail order is the only source for lots of them. Many are antiques or shrubs, and won't look like most people's idea of a rose. They aren't near as much work as florist's roses, though!

I personally try to add only disease resistant varieties to my garden, and most of my garden is no spray, but I do grow a few that need spraying, and I spray them. I'm not gonna torture a rose in my garden by allowing it to be contantly defoliated and struggle to just maintain. I concentrate on disease resitant varieties enough that my spraying is only about 50 of the 300, so that's not too bad.

Bradenton, FL(Zone 9a)

Kathyfour is right. I live just south of Tampa and we have a 90%+ humidity 11 months of the year. Also soap works great on roses for alot of bugs. I work at a plant nursery and our spray guy, he used to work at nursery that grew roses, recommend to me to try soap because that over the counter insecticides and fungicides are watered down. Immunox doesn't last three days here. Neither does Ortho's Rose Pride.

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