How to get rid of black spots on rose leaves

No garden is complete without roses in it. These beautiful perennial flowering plants have over 300 species and thousands of cultivars making them one of the most stunning plants to have in your garden.

But as beautiful as roses can be, they also suffer from problems like black spots that take away their beauty and even put them at risk for complete destruction.

If you notice any black spots on the leaves of your rose plants, here’s why it’s happening and how you can stop it from destroying your rose garden:

Why does your rose keep getting black spots?

Black spot is essentially a fungal disease in roses that’s caused by the fungus Diplocarpon rosae. True to its name, this disease starts as black spots on the leaves of your rose plant that will eventually cause them to turn yellow and die.

Black spot could also affect the stems causing them to have black or purplish spots that will leave your plant weak and dead if you don’t address the problem right away.

Black spots usually thrive more during wet, humid weather and they easily produce spores that move to the rest of your plants to cause more damage to them.

This problem is not uncommon to those who grow roses, but it should be treated right away to keep the fungus from destroying your entire garden.

How often should you spray your roses for black spots?

While black spots could easily destroy your beloved roses, there are simple ways to eradicate the problem and keep it from coming back again. One of the best solutions is to use fungicide spray that you can make on your own.

According to experts, it’s best to spray at least every 7-14 days to make sure that no new fungi infections will pester your roses. Here are some simple solutions that you can create yourself and use to spray on your roses for black spots:

Hydrogen peroxide

Being a common household product, hydrogen peroxide is a smart and easy solution for black spots in roses since it kills molds, mildew, and fungus right away.

Although you can buy hydrogen peroxide in stronger concentrations, your household solution is already strong enough to kill fungus without causing harm to you or the plant. Just mix 1 pint of water with 4-5 tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide in a spray bottle.

Shake it well and spray the solution thoroughly over the affected plant daily until you see no signs of fungal infection. Make sure to only use up to 27% concentration, as higher doses could cause burns to the skin and other injuries.


Vinegar has a lot of uses around the house, including your garden. To treat and prevent black spots on roses, you simply need to create a vinegar solution. First dissolve 1½ tablespoons of baking soda in one gallon of cold water.

After it is mixed well, gently stir some vinegar into the solution, but never shake it to avoid having bubbles come out. Transfer the solution to a spray bottle and use it to spray your roses thoroughly to kill the fungal infection.

Baking soda

This is one of the most common sprays used by gardeners to treat and prevent black spots because all the ingredients are readily available at home. To create your own baking soda spray, dissolve 1 teaspoon of baking soda in 1 quart of warm water.

Add 1 teaspoon of liquid soap and transfer the solution to a spray bottle. This will let you easily spray it thoroughly on the leaves of your roses. Baking soda offers a protective coating for your leaves that keeps mildew and fungus from thriving on them.


It’s easy to find commercial fungicides that help treat and prevent black spots and other diseases in roses. One of the most popular options is the Bordeaux mix, which is essentially a powder that can be used as is or mixed with water and sprayed on your plants.

This fungicide contains copper sulfate and hydrated lime to kill those pesky black spots and keep them from coming back. Some gardeners also spray their plants with Bordeaux mix during the spring to protect them from any diseases as the new leaves come out.

Neem oil

If you want an organic fungicide and pesticide, Neem oil is usually the most popular choice for a lot of gardeners. This oil is derived from the seeds of the neem tree. It’s highly effective because it gets absorbed inside the plant’s system. This keeps the solution working longer for your roses, so you don’t need to re-apply it constantly.

The only downside to using neem oil is that it can burn plant leaves, especially when exposed to the heat of the sun. This is why it’s best to avoid applying it during the summer and within two weeks after using any product containing sulfur.

What are the ways to prevent black spots?

Of course, prevention is still key to keeping your roses free from any damaging fungal infections. For one, it’s very important to plant your roses in an ideal growing environment. Roses are best planted in a sunny spot in your garden with well-draining soil.

You should also provide good air flow around your rose plants by pruning them regularly and putting enough space between the plants to avoid suffocating them.

When watering your plants, try to keep the leaves from getting soaked. This will help avoid the moisture that can easily be a breeding ground for fungus and other diseases.

Finally, make sure to address the black spots on the first sign of the disease. Every fall, make sure to remove any infected leaves to keep them from spreading to the rest of your plants.

Removing the leaves from your rose bush is only half the battle. You also need to remove any infected leaves from the ground. Infected leaves left on the ground will allow spores to come off during watering. This will create an environment for your roses to become infected again.

You should also prune out any canes that are showing any signs of infection. But only prune them during dry weather and cut at least 6-8 inches below the affected area.

Then, don’t forget to disinfect your pruning tools with a 10% bleaching solution or alcohol between cuts to avoid transferring the spores to other plants.

Make sure to throw away any infected parts. Do not use them in your garden or yard. They contain spores that can reinfect your plants.

Can roses survive black spot?

Yes, roses can survive black spot. But you need to take care of the problem as soon as possible. If the black spots take over your rose bush, you may not be able to save it. It may also infect some of your other plants.

No more black spots

Black spots seek to destroy your roses, but you don't have to let them. Take a few steps to eliminate black spots from your roses. Then take a few more to make sure they don't come back.