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The rose, the queen of flowers, is the favorite of many gardeners. It has been cultivated since ancient times. What can be the reason if your rose suddenly loses its leaves? We clarify.

In a nutshell

  • Diseases and pests can be the culprit when roses lose leaves
  • Mistakes in care or a wrong location can favor the shedding of leaves
  • reacting quickly will help protect the plant from damage

The rose is losing leaves

Diseases, pests, but also care errors can be the causes when the rose loses its leaves. Without leaves, the ornamental plant has no chance of surviving because photosynthesis is disrupted. Anyone who notices the fall of leaves in good time and reacts quickly can save their favorite flower.


Blackspot is a fungal disease. It is visible through large black spots on the rose petals. The first symptoms appear between April and May. Only those who take countermeasures quickly can save the plant. Without this, there is a risk of complete loss of the leaves.

Source: anonymous, Black spot, edited by Plantopedia, CC0 1.0


  1. Cut off all affected parts of the plant with disinfected, sharp rose scissors.
  2. Carefully spray the pruned plants with fungicides. Be sure to wet the underside of the leaves.
  3. Repeat the treatment according to the instructions.


Outsmart the dreaded blackstar dew. Prevent with home remedies. Prepare a comfrey, horsetail or garlic broth. Water your roses regularly with the plant-strengthening mixes.

Notice: Destroy the clippings carefully. It is best to dispose of it in the household waste.

powdery mildew

Powdery mildew is one of the most common rose diseases. When outside temperatures rise above 20 degrees Celsius and humidity is high, the fungus spreads at lightning speed. White coating on the leaves is a clear sign. As the disease progresses, the leaves fall off. A simple remedy can help.


  1. Cut off the affected parts of the plant with sharp, disinfected scissors.
  2. Dispose of the clippings in the household waste.
  3. Mix fresh milk (not UHT milk) with water in a ratio of 1:8.
  4. Put the mixture in a spray bottle.
  5. Mist the rose with the milk mixture once a week.
  6. The mixture can also be used preventively, it does not harm the rose.
  7. Also spray the milky water on the plants in the immediate vicinity of the rose.

rose rust

If rose petals have pinhead-sized rust-red spots, your plant is most likely infected with rose rust. If the disease on the rose is not treated in time, then in the summer it will lose its leaves.
Check the fallen leaves. If black borders appear on these in addition to the spots, the diagnosis is unequivocal. Rose rust is a fungal disease. You can get effective fungicides from specialist retailers. If you recognize the disease early, home remedies can help.


  1. Remove infested plant parts with clean tools.
  2. Dispose of clippings safely in household waste.
  3. Prepare a decoction of comfrey or field horsetail leaves.
  4. Pour boiling water over the leaves.
  5. Leave the brew for three days.
  6. Carefully spray the top and bottom of the rose petals with the herbal decoction.
  7. The spray treatment strengthens the plant and can also be used preventively at any time.

Notice: Horsetail decoction is so effective that gardening shops also offer it ready-made.

Wrong location

If your rose is losing its leaves, improper location can be the culprit. Roses need sun and prefer an airy location. Damp, dark places in the garden are not suitable for the beautiful ornamental plant. Rose rust, powdery mildew and blackspot can spread quickly in damp conditions. Note the composition of the substrate in the rose bed. It should be nutritious, well drained, loamy and slightly sandy.

care mistakes

Improper care can cause the rose to lose its leaves. The plants are often watered too intensively. It is enough to water roses once or twice a week during dry periods. Damp rose petals are a hazard. They form the basis for fungal diseases. Only water the plants at the bottom so that the rose petals remain dry. In the spring, fertilize the rose beds with fresh compost. Use a rose fertilizer at the beginning of the flowering period in early summer. When pruning in spring, remove any diseased or dead branches. When the first bloom is over, a summer pruning will help strengthen the plants. In July, remove any faded flowers. This prevents the spread of diseases and stimulates the formation of new rose blossoms.

Notice: Also disinfect the pruning shears during the cut. Soak the blades in spirit for a few minutes. In this way you can prevent the transmission of diseases from one plant to another.

frequently asked Questions

Why shouldn't fallen rose petals be thrown in the compost?

Plant parts affected by pests or diseases do not belong in the compost. Careful destruction is an important measure to combat the diseases. If you put rose petals infected with blackspot, powdery mildew or rose rust on the compost, the spores can spread further. Alternatively, you can burn diseased parts of the plant.

Can drought cause discoloration and leaf fall?

The rose rarely loses leaves due to drought. It is possible that a nutrient deficiency causes the yellowing and leaf loss. The beginning of an infection with blackspot is often shown in this way.

Are there roses that are resistant to rose rust, black spot and powdery mildew?

With shrub roses, pay attention to the origin and the certification with the ADR certificate. Only breeds that are recognized by the General German Rose Novelty Test carry this.

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