Header Graphic
Rose Care Basics > Killing Two Bugs with One Spraying

9 Mar 2006

                                 Killing Two Bugs with One Spraying


As organic gardeners we are always on the lookout for new products that will help with all the munching critters that come to visit our garden in the spring when the foliage arrives and it seems are backs are turned. Maybe it’s a blind eye to the problem in hopes that it will just go away.

Unfortunately, the insects do not go away by themselves. We must do some spraying to help our garden look its best and rid it of the munching critters and make sure that the garden will stay organic and that the beneficial insects remain in the garden.

There were several different products on the market that we were using, however the one that was easiest to purchase is no longer being produced. So we tried again with another new product called Rose Pharm. This product is made in Cambria California where the black spot and mildew are running rampant in some of the rose gardens. After using the Rose Pharm it seems the fungi was disappearing and at the same time they noticed the insects also were going away.

We decided to give the Rose Pharm a good test as last year we had 30 inches of rain. This is not normal for Temecula California where we reside. My husband, Walt, took out the sprayer and started a spray program for the Downy Mildew that seemed to be occurring on the roses from so much rain. As time went by the Downy Mildew was gone, before the heat and we noticed that the insects were also disappearing with each spraying. The only insects that we could see were the beneficial ones, such as praying mantis and the ladybugs.

As the weather warmed up and there was no sign of the Downy Mildew, Walt started to ease up on the spraying program that he had been doing every 7 days. The Rose Pharm spray says to make sure that you do not spray in the heat of the day…wow…they are sure right about that. Walt did spray one morning around 9 am and it started to get hot and the foliage did burn, thank goodness the show season for spring was finished already.

Using a Solo Back Pack sprayer, which holds 4 gallons of water, Walt was using an 8 parts water to 1 part Rose Pharm, this seemed to be the best for the fungi and for the insects, leaving our roses looking wonderful and smelling great.

When you are spraying any type of product in your garden PLEASE make sure that you read the label and follow the directions to include wearing any type of protective gear that might be recommended by the producers of that product. It is always best to wear eye protection in case of wind coming up and blowing product back into the eyes.

Another thing that is never mentioned on a product label is to wash all your clothes by themselves and then shower, even if it is an organic product it is best to follow that advice to be on the safe side.

With so many products to choose from you do need to do some homework as to what type of problems you have in your garden and then select the spray that works best on that problem. You can get more information about Rose Pharm by emailing Susan Lewis, at susan@susanlewis.org. There is an entire line of products and you can order them from her. So far we do not have a local distributor, but if you ask your Armstrong Nursery to bring it in it might help.

We also found that the Rose Pharm could be used on the fruit trees that were near the roses and it did not harm the fruits at all, in fact it seems that it was one of the best crops we have ever had.

For more information contact Diana & Walt Kilmer, 951-693-5568 or email them at


Happy Rose Growing. By, Diana & Walt Kilmer.

American Rose Society Consulting Rosarians


Diana and Walt Kilmer
copyright © 2006-2022, california coastal rose society © all rights reserved.