Asked August 2, 2014, 5:13 PM EDT

my roses have litchen. What can I use to cure them with ?

Stephens County Georgia

1 Response

Thank you for contacting the Cherokee Co. UGA Extension Office and Master Gardeners concerning lichens on your roses. Lichens and moss aren't pathogens, meaning they don't cause disease in plants. They use the plants as a surface to grow on. When a tree or shrub begins to decline due to some sort of environmental stress or other disorder, its stem or trunk growth stops or slows, and that supports lichen growth. If overall plant health is improved, the stem expands and with a dense, vibrant leaf canopy, lichen growth will be inhibited. If you see lichens or moss growing on trees or shrubs in your landscape, this is a clue that something is causing your plants to grow slowly and decline in health. This could be a combination of factors like plant competition, drought stress, root stress, over watering, soil compaction, poor nutrition, improper soil pH or improper pruning. If you remove what's stressing your roses, the lichens will go away. Please contact us if you have additional questions.