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What Is Eating My Rose Bush?

By Lynn Anders
Aphid Infestation
Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of aroid

There are several insects that commonly feed on rose bushes. If your rose bush is showing signs of damage, such as yellowing leaves, you may have an insect eating your bush. These are some common insects found on rose bushes with tips on how to identify the insect.


Aphids are a small insect that are most commonly found on rose bushes. High infestations of aphids will leave an obvious sticky substance on the leaves.


There are several scale insect species that can affect roses such as the California red scale, latania scale, Purple Scale, frosted scale and Kuno scale. Female scales look more like a barnacle attached to the plant. Males look like a typical small insect, but are not usually seen on the rose plant.

Flatheaded Borers

These are beetles in which the larvae have an enlarged flat head. They eat into previously damaged parts of the plant.


There are many species of caterpillars that will feed on rose bushes. They are usually large enough to find and can be removed by hand.

Foliage miners

Foilage miners describes several species of moths whose larvae cause a distinctive type of leaf damage. These insects feed in a maze like pattern leaving revealing trails on the leaf of the rose bush.


About the Author


Lynn Anders has more than 15 years of professional experience working as a zookeeper, wildlife/environmental/conservation educator and in nonprofit pet rescue. Writing since 2007, her work has appeared on various websites, covering pet-related, environmental, financial and parenting topics. Anders has a Bachelor of Arts in environmental studies and biology from California State University, Sacramento.