Is the rose rosette virus a problem in our area?
Jessamine County Kentucky
Yes, rose rosette is a virus that infects roses and it is very active in Kentucky. it is spread from wild roses to landscape roses, as well as from rose plant to rose plant, by small leaf curl mites. Also pruning instruments may become infested with the virus when a diseased plant is pruned and spread the disease to other roses. Some people recommend severe pruning of roses when the disease is first noticed. They recommend pruning 6-12 inches, if possible, below the areas of infection. And disinfect pruning instruments between each cut. This pruning is not always successful in removing the virus from the plant. Often regrowth will show signs of the virus. A more reliable solution is to remove the entire plant, including as many roots a s possible, when the disease is first noticed. There is no treatment for this disease and left unchecked, entire plantings of roses may become infected and die. For more information see this fact sheet from UK Plant Pathology http://www2.ca.uky.edu/agcollege/plantpathology/ext_files/PPFShtml/PPFS-OR-W-16.pdf.