Rose leaves turning yellow – Watering Roses

yellow leaves on roses

Q
I am a “snow bird” in Casa Grande with a small rose garden of 8 bushes. I have a current problem of yellowing leaves on nearly all bushes. It does not appear to be from excess water. I drip water once every 5 days for less than 10 minutes. The bushes are producing lots of new growth and flowers.

Yellowing usually begins at the stem end of a leaf cluster, moving out to the tip leaf. Yellowing on the leaf can begin at the stem or the tip.

Yellowing can occur on leaf clusters near the base of the bush, or out on the bud stems. It takes about a week for a leaf cluster to yellow and fall off the stem. I have read that yellowing can be from many causes, but don’t see any specific information on what to do to end it on my bushes. When your gardens open in April, I hope to visit. Thanks for any suggestions.

A
Thanks for the great question! It looks like you have a salt problem and your rose bushes probably aren’t getting enough water. I talked to two Consulting Rosarians. One recommended that each rose get 4-6 gallons twice a week now and 3 times a week in the summer heat.

The other recommended 2-3 gallons twice a week now and 3 times a week in the summer. Perhaps you could start with 3 or 4 gallons twice a week now and see how it goes.

Variables include whether or not your roses gets shade, how big the rose is (hybrid teas and climbers need a lot more water than a miniature), the daily temperature, whether or not you use mulch and your soil.

A drip system will emit about 1 gallon an hour.

We have salty water here in Mesa and in Casa Grande even more so. When a bush doesn’t get enough water a salt barrier is created in the ground that is hard on a plant. When you water enough it leeches the salts below the root zone.

Hope you can visit the Rose Garden at MCC. Our Mesa-East Valley Rose Society Annual Garden Tour is Sunday April 6th. You get to see The Rose Garden at MCC as well as rose gardens of rose society members.

You can take tours of just the Rose Garden at MCC on weekends, click for more information.