Judging by the number of buds on my plants, this year looks like it will be terrific for roses. I know I write about the aphid situation almost yearly, but as I have already had lots of people asking me about this topic, I thought that it was worthwhile posting again.
This tried and tested aphid be-gone recipe has served me very well and if used, just as you spot the first signs of their little green antennae, it can save you a lot of hassle later on in the summer. In an ideal world, I’d like to hand the whole job of aphid removal over to the ladybirds. However, aphid destruction can be so enormous when the rose buds are young that I worry about waiting for the odd ladybird to decide to make a pit-stop and usually resort to sorting the situation out myself.
What you need:
- Empty spray bottle
- Two or three drops of washing-up liquid
- A couple of drops of cooking oil
It is as easy as that. Put in your washing-up liquid and oil, fill up to the top with water and there you have it.
The washing-up liquid is very drying and the aphids really don’t like it, whereas the cooking oil makes everything rather slippery and not very easy for the aphids to cling onto the rose. The bonus is that the solution is nice and weak, which the roses don’t seem to mind. I’m sure that they would prefer a spray of this every now and again, rather than being chomped by aphids.
Happy rose growing! x