Monday, 27 June 2016

Rose Rosette Stop it or Spread It

It has been no secret that I have been taking photos of roses infected with rose rosette. I try to take them on a weekly basis, so I can see how the fatal rose disease progresses. It is a learning experience. I am not a university or government organization conducting field trials. I have not had prior experience with rose rosette, so I am taking the opportunity to learn as I experience it first hand. The photos are only of diseased roses and my own roses and flowers. None of the photos of diseased roses showed houses that could be recognized. I am committed in stopping the spread of rose rosette.

The sad truth is I am also learning about people. Learning how they do not appreciate any information I have tried to bring to their attention about rose rosette. I have had to watch as they ignored my concerns. Printed material was not sufficient and ignored, an invitation to a live presentation by the local cooperative extension was not enough. I have had to watch as my neighbors thank messages on nextdoor to ignore the little information that I tried to share. There is more information about rose rosette that I can put out in the many messages that I posted. I have had to face the fact that no matter how hard I try in my neighborhood, it will never be good enough or acceptable.

Now the HOA has placed me under surveillance. They ride by taking photos of my house, not once, not twice, but continuously. They must think I am stupid and don't notice. While my husband and I are getting to watch a move on a Sunday evening, a golf cart full of people and HOA members slowly rides by snickering as they take video or pictures from one end of my yard to the other.  It is really creepy, and makes me uncomfortable. While there is no law preventing them from doing that, or anyone for that matter, when it happens as frequent as they are doing, it becomes borderline stalking.

How do I know what their motives are? How do I know they are not planning something unlawful or harmful? How do I know they are not planning some sort of attack? It is a waste of time and resources for them to stalk me in such a way. Their time and resources could have been better used learning about rose rosette, and coming up with a plan to help the neighborhood to get rid of it.

There are many things they could have done, but didn't. It would be nice if they could talk to the landscaping company that is out more frequently than once a week. They could offer to have them dig up the roses for people who are too busy or unable. A small helpful gesture like that would have gone farther in stopping the spread of rose rosette than the many messages I have posted. Educating the neighborhood about rose rosette, and how bad it is would be another option. Showing the neighborhood they are available to offer help and resources would be setting a shining example for other neighborhoods to follow. Showing those who don't yet have rose rosette how to properly spray, what to spray to try to prevent it is even another idea. Asking the landscaping company to please offer a discount for services for this fatal rose disease could be even be done. Any of these suggestions would have been more than helpful.

Maybe they did contact the landscaping company, I have no way of knowing that. Maybe they have done these things I speak of, but I have not seen it. All I see is a a bunch of roses infected with rose rosette, and my inability to take care of it by myself. My neighbors, and HOA have shown they know and they don't care. When I bring it up, that is what I am told. It is places like my neighborhood that don't help get rose rosette under control.

Regardless of my experience, there are others who have a better experience. There are people out there that do listen and do dig up diseased rose bushes. When it comes to rose rosette, we can stop it or spread it.   It is important not just here but everywhere that people become educated about rose rosette. Only then can it be possible for rose rosette to  become a thing of the past.

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Thursday, 23 June 2016

For the Love of Roses

Oftentimes you will hear someone say they love roses. They may simply say it, as if words  are just for the purpose of speaking,  not because of how they truly feel. We think if someone gives us roses it is an expression of love or fondness. The gift of rose could be given out of tradition rather than from the heart.

 We want to stop and smell the roses because no other scent can compare or bring such pleasure. Sometimes lives can be so hectic and busy roses are forgotten, pleasure is forgotten. Fun? All the good things we know in life can be forgotten due to deadlines, work schedules, life. Life is not always easy sometimes it is hard, but roses should never be forgotten.

Poetry and songs that touch our very soul are written about roses. But when people say they love roses do they really mean it or is it just said to impress? These are empty words without meaning. People who love roses love them to the depth of their heart. To them a rose is much more than just a flower.

Most people who grow roses grow them because they love roses to the depth of their souls and they want to express that love to the world.  It is that love produces many rose blossoms.  Their love of roses which bring enjoyment not only to themselves but to all those around them. I have much admiration for those who truly love roses, some can express more love with one flower than many can with just words. They tend their gardens as they would children or pets, and mourn the loss of a rose bush like the loss of a loved one. It is a love that many claim, but few posess.

To some a rose bush is nothing more than a shrub and is easily replaceable. You simply go to the nearest store, pick up the first one you see, and put it in the ground. A flowering shrub that is hardly noticed.  The rose planted in many yards is nothing more than just another plant.  Some just want to brag and say they have a rose growing in their yard. Roses bring so much beauty into the world I cringe to realize they are regarded in such a manner. Roses are worthy of so much more.

After knowing what rose rosette is, and being well informed, those not digging up rose rosette infected roses are not expressing a love for roses.  That is something else besides loving roses. What it is, I don't even pretend to know.  Is it a hatred of roses, hatred for people? Is it disrespect for our national floral emblem? My desire to want to stop the spread of rose rosette is out of real love for roses. It would be a sad world with fewer roses.

Because I love roses I had to refrain myself from indulging in the many sales that happened over the past month. I too had to forgo picking out the perfect rose for mother's day. Not out of budget restraints, but out of love. I love the rose much too much to put it in harms way. While I try every method possible to protect my roses, there are no guarantees. Rose rosette disease is close by, and I know the odds are stacked against me. My love for my roses may not be enough.

I started a facebook page. I hope others will stop by and share their stories and experiences about rose rosette. The link is here. Hope to see you there!

Sunday, 19 June 2016

A Million Excuses to Spread Rose Rosette

Earlier in the week I thought I would try to get some ideas from a mom based facebook group that I belong to. I wanted to see what their thoughts were and how they would react to the situation.

It was a real eye opener. These are not your ordinary moms but a group of what I consider more intelligent and caring moms. Many think it is not acceptable to  give the advice of digging up rose bushes. As brutal as it is digging up diseased rose bushes is necessary to control the spread of rose rosette.

Some were kind, knowledgeable and understanding, and some didn't understand the way I had hoped. There was a plant pathologist who had experienced the loss of trees due to others not caring or understanding what damage the ash borer can do. There was a mom who had a friend who goes around collecting rare roses planted from settlers, so she knew about the importance of saving roses.

When I mentioned negligence, destruction of property and how people have the option to seek damages, one person said no way would that be possible. I beg to differ because once it effects someones pocket book they may think twice before they ignore the problem the next time.

Even when it was mentioned the rose is the floral emblem of the United States, it did not make a difference. When mentioned if there were something destroying bald eagles, I was criticized and scolded that a plant could not be compared to an animal. What should one compare roses to? When it appeared others were arguing with each other I deleted the thread.

Some could not phantom digging up a rose bush that someone close to them planted. Many have had to dig up old rose bushes their grandmother planted, many have lost all if not most of their roses  due to no fault of their own, but fault of others around them. No one should have to lose a rose bush because of someone else failed to realize that rose rosette is like the plague of roses.

I compiled a list of excuses, or my interpretation of excuses they had, while my teen helped answer to these excuses. Maybe others see it different than I do. I am trying to understand why my neighbors wish to spread a fatal rose disease, they think nothing of it. Below you will find these excuses.

Peppering door with flyers-
Only 2 flyers were sent out to every household. A few people got a third flyer, few got extra literature. The HOA was given extra literature as well to help educate them on the matter, so they could do something.

Possibly renters-
If your fridge is broken, the landlord is responsible to repair or replace. If the rose is broken, the landlord should remove it and replace with something else, or you should do it for them and deduct it from your rent if they have ignored you.

My business not yours-
It may not be any of my business if you have rose rosette infected bushes in your yard. However if you spread it to my roses that makes it my concern. Anyone growing roses in this neighborhood should be concerned.

It's a plant not an animal-
You water your plants. You feed your plants. Your plants provide you enjoyment. You give animals water and food, they provide enjoyment as well. Some people care for their plants a lot more than others, and you need to respect that for other people, this plant is important.

Roses are cheap and readily available at a big box store-
This is not true of all roses. There are many varieties not available on the open market, not even on the closed market. Many varieties are not constantly available, there are thousands of varieties of roses, not all are cheap and at the local big box store.

People don't like being bothered-
That is their deal, but if their rose is infected they need to be notified. I doubt they would like to be bothered with a court case when their disease spreads everywhere.

Plants are just landscaping-
To some people plants are more than just landscaping. I would not not give such time and attention to landscaping that I would give to plants, I love taking care of them.

Too busy, no time for it-
If you have a rose infected with rose rosette you need to take time and address it, there are landscaping companies available to take care of the problem for you.

May not maintain their own lawn-
If you have roses, you need to make sure your landscaper is aware rose rosette is in the area and they are educated enough to take care of preventing disease as well as getting rid of diseased plants.

The HOA was contacted through email, which they did not respond to, they were private messaged through facebook, but ignored that too, they were sent text by phone, they gave little response to the text. They were sent a certified letter they refused to pick up. Suggestions were made to ask the landscaping company that is here weekly and sometimes more frequently to offer discounts to residents. I do not know if the HOA took the time to pick up the phone and ask the landscaping company that question. I can go into this further but I won't.

There has to be a cure, plant will get over it-
There is no cure for rose rosette, and no, the plant won't just get over it if you ignore it.

Get over it!-
A fatal disease that threatens your property is not something you get over while the threat lingers. My concern is this disease is not being taken seriously, and the lack of concern and lack of appropriate action.

You're being too pushy!-
It's been two months, and no-one else has done anything. I'm not being pushy, I am being passionate about what I love, and I love roses. It's not my fault that I want roses to stay alive and not become extinct from a fatal virus.

Your sign is insulting!-
This sign or piece of art as I view it is a reflection upon reality. What is insulting is the fact there are diseased rose bushes in this neighborhood and no-one seems to care.

I don't even like roses!-
If that is the case, it should be even easier to get rid of any infected.

Why should I listen to you?-
You don't have to. Simply listen to the numerous plant pathologists and read their articles to understand how bad rose rosette can truly be.

There could be other excuses not listed here, I am not a mind reader and have no idea why my neighbors continue to spread rose rosette disease. I didn't list a million excuses but surely you get the idea of how there is no excuse compelling enough to spread rose rosette and destroy roses.

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Time to Gear Up

Since my last blog post, I felt back into a corner.  I felt alone as if no one in the word cared, and I would not be able to ever win this fight against rose rosette. Somehow I also felt liberated, as if nothing can stand in my way. I have since become busy thinking of what my next steps will be.

I always valued people's privacy, and did not want to take photos of their diseased bushes. Well the fact that the diseased bushes remain shows they have very little respect for others. I have now started taking photos of the diseased bushes. I am careful to make sure no one's house is identifiable, and would not dare take photos of the people. I am now taking photos posting them on facebook, and even tagging the HOA in the process since it is in the neighborhood.

I have also sent a private message to someone who has several diseased bushes through nextdoor. I suspect the message to be ignored, just like the flyers; they have yet to respond. I started a public group on nextdoor, but as expected no one has joined except the moderator. I invited all the neighbors to Rose Care 101, as expected no one from the neighborhood has agreed to go. I can't say I haven't shed tears along the way but I am not giving up. I am sure my family and friends are going to unfollow me on facebook as I started posting there too.

While it may appear rose rosette is not yet that bad in my area, it only takes one infected rose. In other places it had to start somewhere. I look around and I see it being ignored. I do not want it to end up as bad here like places I have only read about, and the many photos I have seen. I am doing my best, but others view my efforts as foolish and unnecessary. It is hurtful, yes, but it only makes me stronger.  I wonder if any of this will get their attention or will all this also be ignored.

I have also posted small snippets of my blog on my nextdoor group. I want them to realize I have a blog, and realize what this whole experience has been like for me. I'm waiting for them to inquire about it, ask for the link. As expected, no one cares. I suspect to them a rose is nothing more than a plant you go to the big box store to buy. With the way the neighborhood has a revolving door, few choose to stay, I hope no other rose lovers move here. I would not choose this agony on my worst enemy.

One of the biggest problems seems to be many un-knowledgeable landscapers over planting Knock Out roses. These landscapers know nothing about rose rosette, and spread it to nearby roses. This is common in subdivisions. The builders plant Knock Out roses, then ignore them. The builders and landscapers need to to be educated about the dangers of rose rosette. I understand their desire to make a quick easy dollar, but at what expense? Where are the builders and landscapers who take pride in their work?  If I was paying someone to take care of my plants, I would expect them to do a much better job of it than I have done myself.  I look no further than my own neighborhood to see where someone taking someone's money to care for the yard, and leaving big diseased roses behind to just spread rose rosette.

My husband tells me people do not care, he says they are not bothered by the way the roses become deformed, it is something in their yard, and a trip to any big box store could replace it once it dies. I know he is right, but I want to have faith in others, I want to believe they don't want to kill other people's roses.

Signs! Being resourceful, I took a sharpie to a used pizza box and paper grocery bags. As tacky as it looked I left it in my front yard for a day. I was waiting for someone to say something, but no one ever did. Over the weekend up went new signs! Hand painted signs! My husband went to the big box store and got plywood and paint. I wanted long and wordy, but my husband told me to keep it short so people would actually read it. One of my future Signs will say "Rose rosette, stop it, or spread it" in all caps. Since I am now finally over my flu I am raring to go!  I plan to display the signs proudly in my yard.

 It did not take long for the HOA to come around and take photos. I assume I will get a letter in the mail any day now. It is ironic how people will complain about my sign but not rose rosette? Some may find my signs unfriendly, insulting, rude, but it is a reflection of truth.

The article my daughter wrote up was in the paper as a letter to the editor, so hopefully it will help someone. The Homeowner Rose Care 101 class will be listed in the paper next week. I haven't yet given up on my neighbors, even the Grinch had a heart in the end.

Monday, 13 June 2016

Rose Rosette Sign! Warning it is Near!

      Rose Rosette WARNING & CAUTION Sign

If you are traveling to my neighborhood, just thought you should be warned that rose rosette is spreading around.

Sunday, 12 June 2016

Rose Rosette Sign! Dedicated to All My Neighbors Spreading Rose Rosette!

This sign is dedicated to all my neighbors. As usual it got the same "Get over it" comment! At least they said something! Someone said it would be great for their next tattoo, but then it was just kidding get over it.  It is obvious they have no intentions of getting rid of rose rosette any time soon.

Thursday, 9 June 2016

Surrounded by the Enemy

Before I started this battle, or war, with rose rosette, I thought things would be simple. I believed all I had to do was tell people once, and they would take care of the problem. I believed a newspaper article, a small garden segment on the news, a flyer, anything, would open their eyes. All I could manage to accomplish was literature, flyers, and some posts on Nextdoor.  I believed my own neighbors capable of the realization that rose rosette was bad and should be eradicated as quickly as possible. I suspected my neighbors would set a shining example for other neighborhoods.

 My belief has since changed to what will it take to open the eyes of those around me? What have I failed to do? Am I a failure? My own neighbors ridiculed any information that I tried to share, it was just too bothersome to receive an email in their email box. One neighbor sent a letter accusing me of trespassing, harassment, and threatened a restraining order just for leaving a flyer on their door! Another neighbor accused me of violating nextdoor policies, another complained they just received too many email messages in their inbox.

The terms evil and spiteful comes to mind of how I am being treated. Am I supposed to just crawl into a hole and hide now? Do I now be nasty just like them? What should I do next? How can one get through to those who refuse to listen? Flyers are out of the question, so are more post on Nextdoor. I am now considering printing up signs. 

Should I consider legal action? While there is no specific law in my state forcing someone to dig up their diseased rose bushes, there are nuisance laws to protect your property. I could go to a judge showing how their diseased roses pose threaten my property and have a court order issued forcing their removal. My husband and I decided against this approach, still it does not make things any easier for us.  We are considering seeking financial compensation should we lose any more roses to rose rosette.

There are rules in my HOA about destroying vegetation, but I suppose that does not apply to roses. I am still trying to figure out why I have to sit here day after day being tormented, while others ignore the fact that they are putting everyone else's roses in danger? I have every right to protect what is mine.

I am now regretting moving here. It is not the strict rules of the HOA, lack of storage space, or even the minuscule kitchen that has turned me against my living in my home, it is my own neighbors! Their lack of compassion, decency, and respect for other people's property.  If our finances allowed, I would move away today. Living here has now become uncomfortable.

Once my mailbox was bashed a year or so ago, not sure why. My cat has been poisoned intentionally or non intentionally.  I have neighbors bashing me, neighbors turning my love of growing roses into a daily war of can and will my roses survive?  I heard rumors of tires being slashed here in this neighborhood for disagreements. I wake up each day wondering what may happen. It is like being surrounded by those who wish to destroy what you love. If the tables were turned, if I was the only one with rose rosette, would they conduct a witch hunt against me? As it stands I am outnumbered.

This war I am having with rose rosette has not been pleasant. There has been little victory as no one else seems to be removing their infected roses, especially the worst case of it right next door.. I had several roses that I had ordered before I noticed all the rose rosette in the neighborhood. For days I cried to my husband how I should not plant them, but instead send them to my brother's house. Two roses that were a gift I did not remove from the box,  but instead sent away to my brother's house. My mind and heart was playing a game of tug of war do I keep them or let them go? I choose to keep the rest of the roses against my better judgement and planted them.

Every day I look at my roses at least twice a day to see if there is any suspicious growth, grateful for each day my roses remain without signs of rose rosette. Everyday I wonder if my neighbors hate me, just don't give a damn, are really that uncaring, or are they possibly just plain dumb? Or is it a combination?  There I said it, maybe they are just plain stupid, selfish, and inconsiderate. I have been fighting being critical of my neighbors, but what other explanation could there be? It has been about 2 months now, what excuse do they have that is so compelling to explain their wanting to spread a fatal plant disease that destroys our national flower?

For the past week, I have been very sick with some sort of crappy flu. I have felt miserable, and been low on energy. I don't believe it is acceptable for me to go to public places spreading my sickness to others. There is medicine available to make me well. For a rose infected with rose rosette, there is no doctor or medicine to save it, there is no cure. It is not acceptable to spread rose rosette on purpose.  I watch slowly as most of the roses in my neighborhood look deformed, and slowly die. I believe I am wicked when I wish the roses would die quicker, maybe then they would be gone from my neighborhood.  I wonder if people are smart enough not to spread it. From what I have seen on another street, probably not, one person had a new potted rose right beside a rose infected with rose rosette. Is this how they deal with it? They have obviously not paid attention.

The worst part about rose rosette is that it spreads when it is ignored. This is the main reason that I keep posting about it is to bring awareness. Maybe my neighbors think I am stupid and I made this rose rosette disease up because Knock Outs are not my favorite rose? Knock Outs lack so many qualities that a true rose lover is looking for such as beauty, grace, elegance, fragrance, history and do you really want me to continue?

There is no such thing as a plant and forget about it rose which is what many think Knock Out roses are. People are planting what they think are plant and forget about it roses, then when the roses come down with rose rosette they just ignore it. Real roses are not meant to be forgotten. These are not people who love roses, these are people who want to pretend they can grow roses. If you are going to grow roses, please do not spread rose rosette disease.

I read of a lady losing many roses because of a negligent landscaper in a nearby subdivision. The landscaper said he would remove the diseased roses from that subdivision but never did. She lost most of her roses because of that landscaper in that subdivision. I often wonder if will I suffer the same fate. Many may think its just a rose, its just a plant. Do they also think its just a cat, its just a dog, they were old, they were sick?  Are people not supposed to love their plants? Are people not supposed to care for their plants? If a man builds a house then loses that house to a disaster, do you tell him it is just a house? If one plants a garden gives that garden care and love, is the answer its just a rose get over it? Am I not supposed to have roses because of my neighbors? 

It is not just about my neighborhood, my neighbors, my roses, it is about all roses. If I am unable to succeed, are there others out there who are also unsuccessful? Are roses doomed because so few care? There are people out there spending time, years, decades, effort and money attempting to stop rose rosette, yet it still exists.  Unfortunately my neighborhood is a prime example of why it becomes so bothersome. The problem may not have gotten so out of control if people would have listened and taken action. Again, my neighborhood is a perfect example. There are so many examples of ignorance, lack of concern, not doing anything, and taking too long to do anything that is causing way too many roses to be destroyed with rose rosette.

 I don't want to save only my roses, but other people's roses too, as many roses as possible! When I see it in public places, I now make calls or send emails. I emailed a local bank, who in return would notify their landscaper. About 2 weeks later the roses are still there. Too many landscapers are planting and forgetting roses spreading rose rosette, and this needs to stop!

 I have convinced my local cooperative extension office to give a presentation about roses, where they will inform others of rose rosette.  To me this is a victory, because it is possible others will learn about the devastation of rose rosette and take action. My neighbors have been invited, but it appears they are ignoring the invitation. The war is not yet over, my battle continues.

Thursday, 2 June 2016

The Saga Continues

My heart sinks every time I see others do lawn care up my street. It is not enough that each time I am outside I am greeted by rose rosette by my neighbors, I also am worried that they continue to spread the disease. The weather has been extremely dry for a long time now, there has not been sufficient rain, which further exuberates all those pest that like the weather hot and dry. The thrips are out in full force, I am sure those eriophyid mites are too.

My certified letter to the HOA was returned, they refused to pick it up from the post office. Yet they thought nothing of having a lawyer send me a letter six months after we had painted out house telling us how we violated their rules. They think nothing of people in this neighborhood spreading rose rosette to other houses destroying everyone's roses. It is rumored that if you leave your trash can out or park your car in the street you get fined.

Around last week or the week before, I received a letter from the HOA and I was sure it was telling me my grass was too high or any other unknown infractions. Instead, it was a letter reminding everyone of how this was one of the best places to live in this area of the state, and how they had rules and dues. It also seemed like they were planning on cracking down on issues, and possibly being a lot stricter. There was nothing about rose rosette.

One neighbor wrote a nasty letter accusing me of trespassing and harassment just for leaving a flyer at her door. When people live in neighborhoods, they should be mindful and respectful of others, and not destroy their property. When there is heavy rainfall, water flows straight to my house from neighboring properties. So much topsoil has been washed away that our yard needs regrading.

Now many neighbors have roses diseased with rose rosette, and think nothing of spreading disease in order to destroy neighbors roses. It is inconsiderate and negligent  to deliberately not take care of roses with rose rosette.  I always gave my neighbors more credit than this, I believed them to be kind and compassionate people, but it would not appear this way from what I see.

Two days ago, my cat was very sick and appeared to have been poisoned, whether intentionally or not. She couldn't even stand up. I'm wondering if this was done intentionally. People don't think anything of spreading their rose disease. I like to believe people are not that cruel, but that is kind of hard. We have been following the vet's instructions, and hope she gets better soon. She can now walk, but still has to recover.

A new neighbor joined the Nextdoor site for our neighborhood and thanked all the messages except the ones I posted about rose rosette. These are the messages my neighbors have posted about TV problems. I only post them to show how concerned they are about cable issues, which they should be concerned about a service they pay for. However, it also shows their lack of concern about the rose rosette disease in the neighborhood.  At least they care about something!

Messages about Cable
May 27th Neighbor 1: Anyone in Neighborhood having Comcast TV issues for the past month? Mine has been cutting in and out all month and finally quit working yesterday and I was told by Comcast that the whole neighborhood was having issues and they discovered faulty wiring down by the road and replaced it and now my Cable seems to be working again. Just curious if everyone was really having the same problem. message thanked once

27th Neighbor 2: Yes, mine has been going in and out and I have called to have them refresh the signal. Yesterday it completely quit working and after it was restored I had to call them again to refresh the signal to clear up the cutting in and out.
At one point Local Telephone was going to install fiber optics for all of our cable, internet, and phone connections but I believe it fell through due to some legalistic matters with Comcast/Xfinity. I wish we had more choices for cable besides satellite. Comcast/Xfinity has the worst customer service and technical support I have ever dealt with!  message thanked twice

27th Neighbor 3: We are too last night was the worst they have put flags in our yard to dig it up I don't know about that. message thanked

May 28th Neighbor 1:  had an appt for Comcast to come out this afternoon to replace my cable boxes but I just got a call that they had discovered the faulty wiring and that they no longer need to replace my boxes. They gave me a telephone # for tech support in case it goes out again but they think the problem has been fixed. message thanked

28th Neighbor 4: Yes ours has been cutting in and out as well. Thanks for calling them. message thanked

28th Me:  It may be a good idea if any of you have ever called 811 (call before you dig) and are aware of bushes, trees, plants or shrubs growing in the area where underground utility are marked to take notice. Roots growing where they should not be, through and around underground utilities and cable boxes often times damage underground cables. Roots do damage underground utility lines all the time. I posted about this a couple of weeks ago, but everyone ignored it. Message thanked once

May 30th Neighbor 2: My cable is still cutting in and out. Are you still having issues as well? message thanked

May 30th Neighbor 4: We are still having issues on Street.

June 2nd Neighbor 1: Yes I'm still having issues but it is much better than it was. I'm going to call Comcast back.

Message about my cat:
June 1st My message about my cat it was not thanked at all:   My cat was doing fine yesterday. This morning she can hardly stand, and shows signs of having been poisoned either intentional or non intentional. I would like to believe that no one in this neighborhood would deliberately poison a cat, as that is not only a crime, it is despicable.

If you have outdoor cats please keep a careful eye on them, as I would not want them to get into what ever it was that my cat got into.

I understand that there are some that are intentionally attempting to destroy other's roses, but this is different. This is someone's pet. If someone is deliberately trying to kill my cat, it could backfire and they could also harm other people's cats in the process.

Right now I am not 100% certain that my cat will recover. I have received hateful letters in the mail for passing out flyers and threats, I hope that this is not in any way related.

June 1st Only 1 reply: I am very sorry to hear about your cat. I certainly hope no one would intentionally harm an animal. I think you have done the neighborhood a service in informing it of the dangers of the rose disease, but I also think that it's now time to let people make their own decisions on what to do. I pray that the Lord shows mercy upon your cat. I did thank them.

Messages on a rose rosette post

Before May 20th, post was deleted On another post: Rose diseases happen. Get over it.

May 20th My response to this:  I appreciate your comment of "Rose diseases happen. Get over it."

However, your reaction and others of not wanting to see or hear about a fatal disease that affects everyone in the neighborhood that has roses is appalling. Rose rosette disease is not like other rose diseases that one can simply go out and buy a spray for, it is FATAL and there is NO CURE for it. One does not get over a fatal plant disease that spreads by the wind when others have failed to take notice, attempt to stop it, or while there are diseased roses in close proximity. AGAIN EVERYBODY"S ROSES ARE IN DANGER while there are still infected plants in such close proximity.

Muting the conversation or ignoring it is not going to make the fatal rose disease vanish. When there are residents in this neighborhood that have diseased roses, and are not considerate enough of their neighbors to take care of the problem it is really sad. I am ashamed to have such inconsiderate neighbors, I am ashamed that some of my own neighbors have such disrespect for our national flower they would scoff at information to protect it. Some of you can continue to ridicule me all you want, it will not stop the fact there are diseased roses in this neighborhood, and the problem will not go away on its own.

Before May 27th from a neighbor First part of response that was deleted: We had to remove our beautiful large knockout roses planted by my mother. I was very sad and upset. I have accepted that I cannot grow.... This message went on to complain about my bombarding everyone with messages about rose rosette.

May 27th My response:  I am beyond upset. As I said before I lost 4 plants already some that I actually propagated myself, plus I gave over a dozen away to my brother. All were rare and hard to find varieties.

I have printed and passed out flyers twice now. Some people are intelligent enough that they actually took care of the problem, but others still haven't done anything except ignore it. It does not give me a good impression at all, especially with the attitude I see here. I don't like seeing roses with rose rosette every time I leave my house. I don't like seeing it every time I walk outside my door. I am bombarded with it everyday, every time I go outside. So it is odd that some can't handle an extra email in their inbox, out of a huge quantity daily.

It does not mean that you can't ever grow roses again because one rose was lost, it just means you have to become smarter about growing roses. Yes, it helps if others would stop spreading rose rosette to their neighbors.

May 27th My response:  Let's get real, ignorance can be bliss. As long as people don't know that rose rosette exists, no worries. Also no one appreciates how it was brought to their attention that it exists. As long as no one knows what it is, it can continue to be ignored.

Those who have roses infected with rose rosette don't appreciate that they have a responsibility to destroy their infected bushes. Instead of being responsible, they ignore it, allowing the mites to breed, and continue the spread. It is very inconsiderate of people to do that. Why would someone knowingly allow the spread rose rosette to their neighbor's roses?

Maybe they have valid reasons for not taking care of the problem, if that is the case they should ask others for help. It would appear though that some can only think this is just another unwanted email in their in box. As long as they don't see it, or know about it, it is not a problem for anyone.

It does not fill my heart with joy to know there are big colonies of mites looking for fresh roses to destroy. Especially since I know others could have prevented it but chose not to. So yes, by all means keep complaining and muting, after all ignorance is bliss.

Friday, 27 May 2016

EXTRA EXTRA Read All About it!

  After noticing rose rosette on my own roses, all I wanted to do was warn others. I assumed that it was possible that many did not even realize rose rosette existed. Thinking it would be a great idea, I quickly notified the paper. I presented an article written by my teen.

After the article was written we promptly emailed it as instructed. The editor of our small local paper told us the article was being edited and would be published in an upcoming edition. We were excited, not because we were proud it was good enough to be published, but because we wanted to help others, we wanted to save more roses than just our own.

We told others to be watching for the article, as we wanted to believe it would be published very soon. Sadly we never saw the article published. This has not discouraged us. Our local extension agent told us they would be willing to give an educational presentation sometime during the next few months. This in itself will help save more roses from the dreaded rose rosette virus.

Below is a copy of the article presented, along with an additional one about boxwood blight. We assumed if we also showed how devastating and destructive some plant diseases are, maybe others would wake up and listen about rose rosette.

Rose rosette article:

Almost everyone loves roses, the flower that symbolizes love with its divine scent. However, there is something threatening these beautiful bushes. This is a deadly virus on the loose, which is blowing in the wind on a mite as small as a speck of dust. One would never believe this tragedy would strike their beloved rose garden, or anywhere near them. Most people don’t even know this virus exists, how to recognize it, or even what to do if it is discovered.

The deadly disease that only strikes roses is known as the rose rosette virus. It is spread by the eriophyid mite, that is as tiny as a speck of dust and blown in the wind like a balloon. This mite then lands on your roses, waiting to devour them and transmitting this deadly virus causing unfortunate death. The disease gives the rose a sickly witches broom appearance, with unnatural bright red leaves, elongated and deformed, and only half open flowers that will often have misshapen petals. It is so bad, that in Texas they have formed a Rose Rosette Eradication Society.

It is more common than people realize. If you look, you can see it in the roses planted at shopping malls, restaurants, and even nurseries! This killer even plagues public rose gardens. Some uninformed nurseries don't even know what the disease is, and merely chop off the strange growth, causing consumers to spread it to their own gardens. Even lawn care companies that you trust to know best will unknowingly spread the virus through uncleaned tools, as they have never heard of it and do not know what a threat it is. Inexperienced planters plant Knockout Roses in overabundance, thinking they don't get any disease, but no rose is immune, not even the vastly popular and massively planted Knockouts. As these roses are treated as no-prune no-care, they make large nets perfect for sucking in mites.

There is no cure. Despite how brutal it may sound, once your rose is infected it is gone. Opinions widely differ, but once discovered the infected roses require prompt attention. Some believe if only one branch is affected, you can cut it off and carefully watch for normal growth. However, most experts recommend that the plant be dug up and disposed of or burned, and then equipment should be sterilized. Even the scarcest bit of root remaining may cause the next rose you plant there to rapidly contract the virus, causing it to get sickly and die. Even roots from one rose bush touching another can spread this virus.

Stopping the spread of rose rosette is extremely important. Many choose to ignore and neglect causing the virus to spread to others. This is terrible, and if you do this you are becoming part of the problem, and part of the reason rose rosette continues like the plague in roses. Nothing works well to prevent it, not even miticides. All you can do is keep strict watch over your bushes, and destroy any infected as soon as they appear. Do not wait for the virus to go away on its own, as it will not. Doing so will only improve the spreading of this terrible disease. It is important for communities and neighbors to work together to remove infected roses to stop the spread of this horrid disease.

 There is a test to confirm rose rosette for the people who need scientific proof. You can get more info on it at your county extensions office. If this has the power to wipe out Oklahoma City’s public rose garden, it surely has the power to wipe out yours.

Boxwood blight article:

 It’s obvious that the boxwood is an important plant. They’re seen everywhere from in front of houses to surrounding UGA’s football field. Most of the stunning, well-cut topiaries visible in garden centers and yards alike were carved from boxwood. However, these iconic hedges are at risk for extinction, all thanks to a fungal disease known as boxwood blight.

  Boxwood blight is like other plant diseases on steroids. The deadly disease can turn a plant that was once green and beautiful into dead twigs within two days. All this damage is caused by small, sticky fungal spores. They’ll latch on clothing, pets, people, or anything else in their path. If an infected spore comes into contact with a boxwood shrub, it can often prove fatal to the bush.

  The only reason boxwood blight is so widespread is because of how little is known about it. Proper precautions are not taken. Infected plants are composted and disposed of normally. The soil and fallen leaves are not given special treatment, and they contain the disease. If people begin to take care in making sure plants are not diseased, and eliminate those that are, fatal plant diseases such as boxwood blight wouldn’t be spreading as they are today.

  The first symptoms of boxwood blight include brown spots on the leaves and stems. If left, these spots grow into dark lesions on the plant. Eventually, the entire shrub will become devoid of leaves, instead a mass of dead sticks. During the time it takes for the plant to become infected and die, many more can get it. The only thing that can prevent further spread is immediate and careful removal as soon as the telltale spots appear.

  No boxwood is immune, from the roughest-cut yard shrubs to the carefully pruned ones owned by master gardeners. Fungal sprays cannot cure it. The only remedy for this fatal disease is prevention.

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Neighborhood Leader's Concern for Rose Rosette

 My neighborhood entrance.

One would expect the most logical thing to do when a fatal plant disease is present in a neighborhood is to contact their HOA. Would it be possible for an HOA to help? Would it be possible for them to do something, anything? Would they at all be concerned about people in the neighborhood? Could they spring for some paper and stamps? Could they do anything at all?

When a local bar at the edge of the neighborhood had a band play, an emergency HOA meeting was called to see if the noise would be bothersome to residents. I thought surely a fatal plant disease that affects our national flower would have some importance. Sadly I was mistaken, it would appear all the board members were too busy or had little to no concern. If I parked my car on the street, or left my trash can out, I could be fined, but diseased roses don't seem important enough to do anything.

Naively, I believed they would be concerned and take action. I did exchange text with one HOA member, left a handwritten note on their door along with literature. This HOA member led me to believe something would be done. I sent messages through facebook without any response. I sent 2 emails without any response. Only after the second letter informing them a certified letter was being mailed did they post a picture of the first flyer on their facebook page. A photo that I had texted from my phone at that, not a scanned copy, not even the color copy they were emailed.  It was not left up very long before it was taken down. When I posted public messages on their facebook page they immediately erased them.

Names have been removed to respect privacy. Here are the emails that were sent. No action was taken from either email.

April 23:

Last weekend I posted a message on Nextdoor neighborhood site in an attempt to get others to inspect their roses. Only 1 person replied, and 1 person thanked me. Most people will ignore rose rosette thinking that if enough of a chemical is sprayed it will not be a problem and go away. Rose rosette is much different than black spot and other similar problems which one can take care of. There is no cure for this virus, no rose bush is immune. Anyone who is able to find a cure for this virus will be wealthy.

Some probably think so what, I will just dig this one up and plant another in its place no big deal. Problem is, most likely they end up with another diseased rose bush. The Knock Out rose that is mostly planted in the neighborhood is not immune to this virus, no rose is immune. Knock Out roses are the ones used in studies for this disease.

Most rose breeders breed for beauty and scent, in gardens or greenhouses. The Knock Out rose was not, it was bred in a laboratory, and bred to survive. Some people may think a rose is a rose, they come in various colors, if one bush dies a quick trip to any big box store will yield them another rose bush. At a big box store they are a dime a dozen.

I did not want to mention my own roses, and you will most likely view me as a rose snob, but my roses can't be replaced at a big box store. I rooted cuttings for most of my roses and they grew into plants. Some of the ones I have are not readily available in commerce, not rooted year round, nor rooted on a yearly basis. I was on a wait list for one rose I just received after almost 2 years, another is not available in commerce in this country, and I waited 3 years only to put them in harms way.  If this one rare breed of  rose is destroyed of mine, I will never be able to have it replaced.

this is not about me, this is not about my roses, this is about all the roses in the neighborhood infected with the virus, and the ones that are not. Someone may want to point the finger and say because I have roses not marketed as disease proof, my roses are the ones spreading disease. If this were true, my roses are so small they would all have died by now. I noticed one that appeared to have rosette on one branch and immediately destroyed the whole bush, another I destroyed by mistaking new growth as the disease. The disease is spread by a diseased mite blown in the wind.

What you will see is deformation in the infected rose bushes. Make no mistake these infected rose bushes will die. The longest documented rose with RRD was 7 years. An infected rose will show symptoms anywhere from 3 weeks to a year. As these dying rose bushes wait for their demise, the wind is blowing thus spreading the infected mites to neighboring rose bushes. This disease destroyed Oklahoma City's public rose garden, it destroyed over 800 rose bushes on 1 university campus in Texas. This disease has the power to wipe out all the roses here in our neighborhood.

As long as no one is aware or inspecting or having their roses inspected for the disease when there is a known outbreak, it will continue to spread. No one can force anyone to inspect their roses, or remove diseased roses, but it is possible to make them aware. Roses are not meant to be planted and forgotten, they are meant to be cared for.

I am unclear who does the landscaping at person's house, but for them to have  noticed the witches broom appearance then not attempt to figure out what was wrong and take action is saddening. Unfortunately some of their rose bushes are showing more advanced stages. I told them, and left literature on their door, but they were unconcerned and insisted that Knock Out roses don't get any disease. I would be willing to bet any rose they have that is not infected will be infected. They are not the only person in the neighborhood who has infected roses, it is scattered about.

There is an epidemic of rose rosette in this neighborhood no doubt. Some may know and not care, some may not know. If one of my plants had a disease that had the potential to kill all the same type of plant, I would want someone to tell me. There must be some way to notify people and ask them to act responsibly to stop the spread of disease. Some people may know of the disease and not have the ability to remove the rose bushes themselves. Is there any way to get volunteers to help those who are unable to dig the bushes themselves or don't have the financial means to hire outside help?

I have merely touched the surface on this topic. Most research is being conducted in Oklahoma, Texas, and Tennessee. No research is being conducted in residential or public gardens, only controlled studies at limited universities. Until this disease strikes  more important national rose gardens, few will continue to notice and take appropriate action or conduct research to stop this virus. I left literature on HOA  door, and I know they are busy thinking of what to do and how to go about it.  In the meantime here are 3 more links that may be of help.

I realize that all of you volunteer and do not receive compensation or gratitude when it is deserved for serving on the HOA, and are met with complaints all hours of the day and night, some matters important some not. I apologize for bringing this to your attention, as this has nothing to do with HOA rules, and this is just another complaint of something that none of you should even have to deal with.

May 1: This is being mailed certified. A copy was also left on HOA member porch.


It has come to my attention that there is a severe outbreak of the rose rosette virus in this neighborhood. I have provided literature, sent emails, texts, and none of you have bothered to respond back with what your intentions are on what can or should be done. Again rose rosette virus is nothing to be ignored, once infected most roses die within 2 years. There are so many infected bushes now, if it continues there will be no roses at all in this neighborhood.

It is written in your own rules not to destroy vegetation. This is not about policing homeowners on how to perform their lawn-care, this is about informing them in a simple polite manner that there is a plant virus that can wipe out all the roses in the neighborhood, and as a community we should work together to take care of this problem. I have already lost 3 rose bushes, and will most likely loose 4 more due to the wind blowing visible debris from diseased bushes on them.

Because of your failure to respond to my pleading, I passed out flyers with simplified information clearly stating it was not endorsed by the HOA. HOA member led me to believe that he would post information online for residents, even post photos or information on facebook, yet he did not. It is very discouraging and disappointing that this situation continues to be ignored by the HOA

Lack of concern is only contributing to the spread of this virus that is fatal to roses. You were asked if you could come up with solutions or volunteers for those who are physically unable to dig up their infected plants, unable to hire outside help, or to ask the lawn care company to provide a discount to help remove diseased plants. Providing people with helpful solutions to those who need it could be beneficial in the long run. Those with infected bushes may need your assistance, are you prepared to provide it?

You could have informed everyone the rose rosette virus was in the neighborhood, or you could have done something, yet so far nothing has been done. While everyone sits and does nothing, the virus keeps spreading to additional rose bushes. This rose rosette virus has gone unnoticed for quite some time by the appearance of some of the bushes. Few have noticed the weird appearance, attempted to find out what it is, or what to do about it.  This is precisely why the rose rosette virus is so widespread in the neighborhood.  Is it possible that somehow people were misled into what they thought were plant and forget about roses? Very few residents have found it important enough to take action. A simple notification from the HOA could have been extremely helpful in this situation.

Does every rose bush in this neighborhood have to become infected and die before you realize this is actually a serious problem? Is this neighborhood going to be without any roses because you ignored this problem when you could have prevented it from becoming worse. According to researchers the mite that carries the disease can hitchhike on other insects, pets, clothing, leaf blowers, even your car. There is no magic spray that can wipe out rose rosette. I will use HOA member as an example, rose rosette is right across the street from him, even beside him. How long will it be before his rose bushes become infected? Or does he even care? There have been some windy days, how long before all the bushes in the neighborhood are infected and die?

It would appear that hardly anyone including the HOA cares that rose rosette has the potential to kill every rose bush here at Neighborhood. When others come asking why didn't you tell us, why didn't you help us, why didn't you tell us this was really serious, you will not be able say that you were not informed. Please help to stop the spread of this devastating disease.

My Name

Sunday, 15 May 2016


It was recommended by several sources to share information. I was sternly scolded by a master garner on how important it is to stop the spread of disease, another suggested posting on Twitter, facebook, Nextdoor, EVERYWHERE! Well, here is my experience posting on Nextdoor.

 Our Nextdoor consist of 47 members, some have separate accounts for spouses. It is not very active, a few post about yard sales and such. I thought I would take the opportunity to use Nextdoor as a way to help my neighbors and bring more awareness. I was sure they would find the information helpful, interesting, and be willing to dig up their infected roses, protect their roses. I thought maybe I could protect them from turning their street into a water park or getting electrocuted.  Here is a list with dates of my post, and the reaction or lack there of.

April 17: There is no easy way to say this, I have seen the rose rosette virus aka witches broom on many roses throughout the neighborhood.

If you think this is not serious THINK AGAIN! This virus is here in this neighborhood. If you have infected roses they will die, most likely within 2 years if not sooner! The longest documented only lasted for 7 years.

Knock Out roses which are mostly in the neighborhood are marketed as a rose that NEVER gets any disease, and NEVER needs any care. That is a myth, According to researchers Knock Out roses have been unknowingly sold at big box stores with this virus. Most researchers use Knock Out roses in their trials.

There is no known cure for the rose rosette virus, if one of your rose bushes is infected it will die. The disease is spread by an extremely small mite not visible with the naked eye through the air when the wind blows. Even using a leaf blower around infected roses helps spread the virus.

If you choose to do nothing, the mite that transmits the virus will continue to multiply then be blown by the wind to your neighbor's roses.

Experts say to dig up the plant roots and all then dispose of it. Then not plant another rose in that location for quite some time. The longer you wait the bigger the colony of mites becomes, and the more it spreads.

I urge everyone to inspect your rose bushes, ask neighbors to inspect their rose bushes. If you think you have observed this fatal rose disease known as rose rosette virus, but need a second opinion call the cooperative extension, ask them to verify. The virus only effects roses, as far as the experts know. An infected rose can show symptoms in as little as 3 weeks or take as long as 1 year.

If nothing is done this virus can spread like wildfire killing ALL the roses here in our neighborhood. As a precaution I dug up 2 roses, because I believed they had one infected branch. When your rose has more than 1 infected branch,

There is nothing you can spray that will make this virus go away. If your roses are not yet infected, you should start spraying them with a miticide and spray weekly. If you are an organic person, get some lady bugs and some more beneficial insects. Start inspecting your roses regularly. There are public rose gardens that are plagued with this virus, no rose is immune, but you can stop the spread.

Please look carefully at the photos in this these links of the rose rosette virus. Take a moment to actually read the attached links. The more the virus is ignored the more it spreads.

1 neighbor thanked me  1 neighbor replied : "We just decided to cut them down to the ground and see if they comeback. Thanks for the info." My responce: If a bush is fully infected, roots and all should be bagged and removed. If only a one branch is infected, there is a slight possibility that the bush will come back healthy. Pruning equipment should be cleaned with bleach to avoid spreading the virus to other rose bushes. Unless the rose bush is rare or has extreme sentimental value it should be destroyed roots and all.

April 30: Flyers were passed out to every household unless it got blown away by the wind. The rose rosette virus is very serious and should not be ignored or taken lightly. While passing out fliers I noticed many houses that had roses seriously infected with the rose rosette virus. Not one street was without infected rose bushes. I have spoken with a few who have taken care of the issue or have made arrangements to have the infected roses removed. The cooperative extension service is available to help you identify suspected plants. If you have roses infected with rose rosette please act responsibly and remove the infected plants promptly. Failure to remove the infected plants will continue the onslaught of this deadly virus.

I responded to this post 7 times with photos of my roses, no one thanked me.

May 2: Call Before You Dig! 811 Call before you dig or (800) 282-7411 please make that call if you haven't done so already. Under ground utilities mostly run parallel with the side walk. I encourage everyone with infected bushes near the sidewalk to make that call ASAP! It is important anyway to call them, take photos of where your utilities are marked and use it as future reference. It is not safe to use mechanical equipment to dig near these underground utility lines. I am attempting to find out the safest way to remove these bushes from these areas. One researcher at the University of Arkansas says if you are NOT replanting a rose bush in that location, to cut it down at ground level and apply herbicide, then watch for suckers and continue to use herbicide each time a sucker shoots up, which could take some time. No one responded or thanked me. My response 5/2/2016 Depending on the rootstock was used on your rose roots, the roots can grow to be 12 feet or more. Some sources estimate underground utilities to be as shallow as 2 feet deep. I am waiting on those exact numbers and will post. Again, it is best to dig up roots from roses infected with rose rosette, and roots can put out suckers as much as 2 years later. If that is just not possible, herbicide is the next best option, but in this case it is not advisable to ever plant another rose in that location.

Please keep in mind that underground utilities should be treated the same as overhead utilities, it is usually best to avoid planting in those areas, If you have planted by utility boxes, or on top of underground utility lines, please keep in mind when utility companies need to work, it is possible for them to cut down your bush/plant/tree/shrub. Planting bushes/plants/trees/shrubs with deep roots or without root barriers can damage underground utilities. People and landscapers do it all the time, that does not mean it is advisable to do so. Also please keep in mind that if you deliberately plant on the property line any bush/plant/tree that overhangs on your neighbor's property line it could cause conflicts, especially if that plant/shrub/tree becomes diseased/dead/obnoxious/etc or you are unable to maintain that plant/tree/shrub/bush/even a fence without constantly going on your neighbors property. Any arrangement you may have with a current homeowner, the next homeowner may not agree to. When planting ANYTHING or putting up fences please keep these things in mind. Again on 5/2/2016 The power company said average 2ft, water company said as little as a foot, and phone company said 18-24 inches. This is why it's very important to call before you dig. I didn't call the cable company, but that is probably similar to the other utilities. 5/11/2016 I assumed it was possible that some haven't dug up their roses because they were waiting on call before you dig. I called call before you dig and they were out that very afternoon and were finished within 2 days.

Last week I put in phone calls to more than one power provider to get information about safe planting and distance from underground utilities.

After consulting with their engineers I was told not to plant anything in front of any transformer box, and do not plant anything within 12 feet from the side or back of any transformer box. I was also told not to plant within 10 feet of the underground utilities that run parallel with the sidewalk.

This information may differ with utility providers. Many find transformer boxes an eyesore and choose to put other people's lives at risk for aesthetic purposes only. If an underground utility is damaged by a root coming in contact with the wire, the plant can conduct electricity. This can seriously injure or kill humans and animals.

May 3: Boxwood blight is a serious problem in the state of Georgia at this time. Quality boxwoods are not cheap plants. I am not sure how many of you have boxwood or if any of you have boxwood but if you have boxwood you should pay attention. Boxwood blight can kill a plant within 2 days. If you have boxwood I suggest you stay on top of things and inspect your plant, and protect your plant the best you can, and ask anyone in the neighborhood who has boxwood to do the same. Plant diseases can and do spread quickly when ignored, that is why it is important to pay attention and act quickly. Look at the link below for more info. Our local cooperative extension office is available should you need more information.
No one bothered to thank me or respond.

May 9: Because so many have failed to remove their rose rosette infected bushes, everyone who has roses not yet infected is playing Russian roulette with their own bushes. Many may not realize exactly how bad rose rosette is, or simply just don't care.
Every time anyone does lawn care with mowers, leaf blowers, or even weed eaters near any infected roses the mites are infecting nearby roses. Even simply taking a walk the mites transport on your clothing infecting other rose bushes.
Even using miticide does not guarantee that uninfected roses are automatically protected. It is beyond discouraging that rose rosette has spread so far and wide in such a small area because many have failed to take notice or action when many roses became infected with rose rosette. Now all everyone with uninfected roses can do is sit back and watch the infected deformed rose rosette infected bushes die. I hope that something will cause people to wake up and do something before every rose bush around here is dead.
I am further disheartened that I have spent time planting and maintaining many uncommon and some extremely hard to obtain roses only to continuously watch almost everyone with rose rosette infected bushes do nothing. I have given away more than a dozen baby rose bushes that I spent time propagating just to get them far away from diseased bushes. I have given up my place in line for several hard to obtain roses because of this outbreak. This outbreak has affected me in a very negative way. I hope everyone will take heed and do the right thing.

The attached photo is of diseased debris that has blown in my yard. No one bothered to thank me or respond

May 10: When someone posted about wanting to earn some extra money I responded with this: Maybe they could make some money digging up rose bushes infected with rose rosette. Just an idea.

May 10:This is an advanced color copy, my printer only prints black and white so that is what will be passed out to everyone. There are 2 versions so those with infected roses with know their roses are infected. IT DOES NOT AFFECT HUMANS! I am unclear on whether or not people think it does. It would appear that few are taking proper action, or fully understand how serious a threat this virus is. I did 5 responses to this post about symptoms and similar pictures, again no one Thanked me or bothered to respond.

May 11: Rose Rosette Fun Fact of the Day Pine pollen can travel by wind up to 1800 miles and still be viable! Think of what little eriophyid mites can do when they only have to go from one rose to another a few houses away. These are the very mites that spread rose rosette!

May 12th: The iconic breakfast cereal Cheerios was introduced in 1941 by General Mills as CheeriOats. This is also the year rose rosette was first identified!

May 13th: Our local Cooperative Extension office has agreed to do a public informative educational presentation about rose rosette sometime soon, hopefully within the next few months to bring more awareness. Hopefully others in our area will be interested in stopping the spread of this virus.

May 13th: Share helpful information posted by one of my neighbors!!

"6. What do you mean by "moderation" and not over posting? Is there a message limit?
There isn't a single answer to this question or a specific message limit. It really depends on the stage of your neighborhood and the tolerance of your neighbors. For example, when neighborhoods are in their early stages with fewer than 50 members, we recognize that a small number of members will do most (and sometimes all) of the posting. But once a neighborhood becomes bigger and more active, it's important that members become more conscious of the dangers of over posting and dominating discussions in a way that frustrates their neighbors or discourages others from posting. In such neighborhoods, members should generally avoid posting more than a couple of posts or comments back-to-back, or initiating multiple threads on the same topic in the main newsfeed. If you see that a majority of the posts and comments are yours, you’re likely over-posting. Meanwhile, if you believe that someone else is over posting, send them a (polite) private message letting them know or post a general message to the newsfeed (without naming anyone specifically) reminding people of this guideline. Additionally, keep in mind that "bumping" a message multiple times to bring it back up to the top of the newsfeed is considered a form of spamming or over posting.
I mean no offense and just want NextDoor to continue to be a helpful resource for our neighborhood. thanks!"
8 Thanks so far!

May 13:  Hazmat suits are worn when dealing with hazardous materials. They're also worn for removal of rose rosette infected bushes in large public gardens!

May 14:  Hairspray is great for keeping your hair in a nice style, but it can also be useful when removing rose rosette infested bushes! Simply spray the rose thoroughly with a standard hairspray before removal to aid in keeping all the mites contained to one bush.

May 14: Another post by the SAME neighbor: MUTE if ever you are having issues with neighbors violating policy and posting the same info daily, you can simply go to their profile, click the 3 dots on the right and click mute. they won't know they've been muted but lol you will
That post was thanked 4 times.

And here we are today. Yesterday someone did dig up infected roses! To me it is a miracle every time it happens. So while most choose to ignore, there are those few who have paid attention. One thing is sure the Grim Reaper of roses is coming for everyone's roses in my neighborhood unless it is stopped.

 edited to add a message from one of my neighbors: "Rose diseases happen. Get over it." So far, this has been thanked twice.

edited to add a message I replied to the last neighbor:
I appreciate your comment of "Rose diseases happen. Get over it."
However, your reaction and others of not wanting to see or hear about a fatal disease that affect everyone in the neighborhood that has roses is appalling. Rose rosette disease is not like other rose diseases that one can go out and buy a spray for, it is FATAL and there is NO CURE for it. One does not get over a fatal plant disease that spreads by the wind when others have failed to take notice, or attempt to stop it, or while there are diseased roses in close proximity.
Muting the conversation or ignoring it is not going to make the fatal disease go away. When I look and see that there are residents in this neighborhood that have diseased roses, and are not considerate enough of their neighbors to take care of the problem it says a lot. I am ashamed to have such uncaring neighbors, I am ashamed that some of my own neighbors have such disrespect for our national flower. Some of you can continue to ridicule me all they want, it will not stop the fact there are diseased roses in this neighborhood, and the problem will not go away on its own.

Saturday, 14 May 2016

My First Encounter with Rose Rosette

  About a month ago, I started my devastating battle with rose rosette. Before that, I was clueless. I thought rose rosette was a myth, and cases were extremely rare. But there it was, in my own garden, contaminating everything. I felt like a deer in the headlights. It couldn't, it wouldn't happen to me.

I was wrong.

  Rose rosette isn't a one in a million disease. It is here, where I am. It's probably where you are. Every time I get in my car to run errands, I notice the telltale signs on the rose bushes at the banks, fast food restaurants, and even shopping malls. It's devastating to see it hurting places you don't care about. But then it decides to strike a bit too close to home.

It was right beside my home. Right in my neighbor's backyard and whole side yard. Huge, bushy knockouts, with sickly canes drooping over the fence, and in turn, in my yard. The first time I noticed it for what it was, I felt sick to my stomach. I couldn't believe it! The moment I walked up the street to go tell them, I noticed it in other yards too. It was hard to believe it then. It couldn't be that everyone, and I do mean everyone, had it. If there was a rose, it had at least two symptoms of rose rosette.

The first thing I had to do was tell the person directly beside me. Perhaps they would take care of it without that much of an issue? Immediately after speaking with them, I knew that wasn't the case. They had Knockouts, and with them, the classic "these don't get disease" attitude. As soon as I informed them, I was met with an "Oh, so that's what that is?" It was obvious they had no plans of removing the infection.

But what about everyone else? Every time the wind blew, their roses were just as much of a risk to the few, if any, uninfected. I'd already had to destroy Silver Shadows, Scept'rd Isle, St. Cecilia, and one that I'd lost the label to about a year ago. I couldn't afford to lose any more, not when I had rare roses at stake. I had to inform them.

So, I printed out the first set of flyers. I'd found an informative handout from online, and spoke to anyone on my street that had roses and would listen. Many gave me the same feeling as the first, as if they didn't care and had no intentions of removing the roses. I still couldn't give up hope.

Then came the second set. These had a black and white photo, and were personally made up to be short, simple, and to the point. This time, the whole neighborhood got one. Not just one street. The roses in other areas were just as bad, and I had noticed very few houses that actually had at least one rose that appeared healthy. This time, I didn't talk to many people, and simply left the flyers for them to read.

A few weeks later, I drove around my neighborhood. The number of houses that did something, I could count on one hand. In a neighborhood of 100+ homes, that's not exactly encouraging. Enter, third set of flyers. These were twice as short, three times as simple, and included a photo taken of sick branches that fell in my yard, along with plenty of information about disposal of infected bushes. Those got passed out, again, to everyone. There was a special edition for people with the disease immediately visible on their roses, mentioning that it appeared theirs had it. As I walked and left them, I noticed that a few houses had trimmed the most visible disease off, or hard pruned. I'd seen the roses before, and they were far beyond the one strike rule.

It's been several days now, too. Nothing else has been done, and I'm worried that every time the wind blows, another rose has a risk of getting rose rosette. I have taken to inspecting my roses daily and panicking every-time I see a red leaf. I am constantly finding infected material in my yard which doesn't help ease my mind.

This is not even scratching the surface of what has transpired over the past month!
Until next time I leave you with the Rose Rosette (Not So) Fun Fact of the Day.

The iconic breakfast cereal Cheerios was introduced in 1941 by General Mills as CheeriOats. This is also the year rose rosette was first identified!