Roses can thrive on organic rose care with only minimal work and dedication. Organic rose care can produce strong, healthy and disease resistant plants. Organic gardening creates a health environment for humans, roses, plants and animals to co-exist. Many species of mammals, birds and insects are adversely affected by the widespread use of chemical herbicides and pesticides. Aphids commonly afflict rose bushes and can be dealt with naturally without using harmful pesticides.
Roses can and do thrive on a simple healthy soil base with organic fertilizing nutrients. Create a compost pile to naturally add nutrients to the garden soil surrounding roses. Maintain a high level of peat moss around rosebushes to aid in keeping the soil moist and help in the nutrient breakdown process. A rosebush grown in healthy soil conditions will be better equipped to fight off pest infestations.
Aphids commonly attack rose bushes. The aphids are especially drawn to the new green shoots and buds of the plant. Along the shoots of the new growth, the aphids will latch on to the plant with their mouths to suck the rose bushes sweet sap. Aphids can simply be washed away daily using a hose with a high burst of water. Take a cotton cloth and gently remove the aphids from the roses new growth as you wash the plant with the water. Many garden centers and online garden supply stores sell ladybugs in bulk which are a natural enemy of the aphid. Purchase ladybugs and turn them loose on the rosebushes for natural maintenance and prevention of the aphids.
Neem oil is a wonderful preventative to keep roses from becoming infested or re-infested with aphids. The oil is made from pressing the seeds of the neem tree (Azadiracta indica Juss) to extract the oil. Compounds found within the oil discourage insects from accidentally ingesting the oil, which helps keep the rose bush safe from pests. Neem oil is applied by spraying the plants foliage and buds. Mix 1 tsp. of neem oil with 1 qt. of water and a 1/4 tsp. of common dish detergent. Place the mixture in a hand-held sprayer, and spray the rose bush. The mixture is best applied in the early morning or late afternoon. Apply every two weeks for control. Neem oil is sold in a variety of brands at garden supply stores and health food stores.
Spray rose bushes with garlic spray weekly. The foliage of the rose bush will absorb the garlic spray and render the plant unpalatable to aphids, spider mites and other pests. Purchase garlic spray at garden supply stores or health food stores.
Aphids hate the smell of decomposing bananas. Peel the bananas and place the peel around the base of the rose bushes. The aphids will leave the bushes to avoid the unpleasant odor. The banana peels add potassium and phosphorus to the garden soil. Work the rotten peels into the garden soil for a natural fertilizer.