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Should Yellow Leaves Be Removed From Roses

Yellow foliage on roses often signals disease and should be removed as soon as possible. Fungal infections, nutrient deficiencies, bacterial blight, and many other worrisome conditions can cause the yellowing of rose leaves or buds, robbing plants of their health and beauty.

Early removal of yellowed foliage is key. Prune away infected foliage with sharp scissors or pruning shears, trimming down to just above a healthy-looking node; such cuts help the plant heal more quickly and encourage new growth. Discard debris in the trash – never compost diseased leaves!

Treatments for underlying fungus and bacteria may also be needed; consult your local nursery for advice on available remedies. Regular preventative spraying with neem oil, sulfur-based fungicides, garlic tea sprays, or other products could also guard against future issues.

Be sure to inspect roses regularly and remove any damage before it has a chance to spread — watch out, especially for black spots on upper leaf surfaces that indicate wet weather diseases such as black spots or mildews and have yellowing along the margins of leaves, which often suggests aphids are at work. Healthy plant habits go a long way toward keeping roses free from disease all season long.

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