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Roses are a popular and beloved plant in Bloomington, but they are not immune to diseases. One of the most concerning diseases affecting roses is Rose Rosette Disease (RRD). This disease is caused by a virus that is spread by tiny mites, and it can be fatal to infected plants. In this blog post, we will discuss how to identify and prevent Rose Rosette Disease in your Bloomington garden.

Identifying Rose Rosette Disease

RRD affects all types of roses, including shrub roses, hybrid teas, and climbers. The symptoms of RRD can vary depending on the variety of the rose, but there are a few common signs to look out for:

Abnormal growth: Infected roses often have excessive thorniness, new stems growing from the base of the plant, and unusual branching.
Discolored foliage: The leaves of infected roses may turn red, purple, or bronze, and can be smaller than usual.
Deformed blooms: Infected roses may produce small or misshapen blooms, or no blooms at all.
Presence of mites: Look for tiny mites on the leaves and stems of the plant. They are about the size of a grain of salt and can be seen with a magnifying glass.

Preventing Rose Rosette Disease

Prevention is the best way to protect your roses from RRD. Here are some tips for preventing the disease from affecting your Bloomington garden:

Choose Resistant Varieties: Some rose varieties are naturally resistant to RRD. When selecting roses for your garden, choose varieties that have been bred for resistance to the disease.
Inspect New Plants: If you’re buying new roses, inspect them carefully for signs of RRD before bringing them home. Avoid purchasing any plants that show signs of the disease.
Prune Carefully: Pruning can help to prevent the spread of RRD, but it must be done carefully. Infected parts of the plant should be removed and disposed of immediately, and pruning tools should be sterilized between cuts.
Control Mites: RRD is spread by mites, so controlling mite populations is essential. Use insecticidal soaps or neem oil to control mites, or contact a professional landscaper to assist with mite control.
Practice Good Hygiene: Proper garden hygiene can also help to prevent the spread of RRD. Remove fallen leaves and debris from around the base of your roses, and dispose of any infected plant material.


Rose Rosette Disease is a serious threat to roses in Bloomington, but with proper prevention and identification, it can be controlled. By choosing resistant varieties, inspecting new plants, pruning carefully, controlling mites, and practicing good hygiene, you can protect your roses from this devastating disease. If you suspect that your roses have been infected with RRD, contact a professional landscaper to assist with diagnosis and treatment. With care and attention, you can keep your Bloomington garden healthy and beautiful for years to come.