Sunday, July 08, 2007

My Rose has Fuzzy Balls

I couldn't figure out why I would get these fuzzy balls on my roses every spring.
That's the tip of my finger so you can guess at the size.

They start small and gradually form a 'mossy gall', it's kind of like Rose Cancer.

They are caused by Cynipid Wasps laying their eggs on the leaves and stems of roses, usually wild roses. They form into balls with little chambers inside for the wasp larvae to grow.

Here's some of the larvae I rudely dumped on the hood of my truck.

Mossy rose galls are caused by Diplolepis spinosa, a cynipid gall wasp. These galls are common on wild roses of North America, from Ontario to Alberta in Canada and throughout most of the northern United States. They are becoming common on Rugosa cultivars.17 The presence of these insects is indicated by the formation of spherical, golf ball-size, spiny galls on the canes of host plants.

Insecticides have no effect on the wasp that causes mossy rose gall. The most effective control is physical removal and disposal of galls in autumn after leaves have dropped and galls are visible. It is important to dispose of all galls since even a single missed gall can produce and reintroduce 30 to 40 mature wasps to the garden the following spring.

Gall Wasps

Many species of gall wasp attack roses, each producing a characteristic gall. A gall is an outgrowth or swelling of unorganized plant cells. It is usually spherical. Each gall contains the larva of a gall wasp. The mossy rose gall wasp is the most common gall wasp infesting roses. The female wasp lays her eggs in young leaf buds in the spring. The plant reacts to this by producing a mossy gall. The moss-like galls are greenish or reddish, about 2.5 cm in diameter, and appear in June and July. The larvae remain inside the galls until the following spring. They are common on wild roses but seldom appear on garden hybrids. Mossy rose galls have little effect on the plant aside from being unsightly. The only method of control is to prune and destroy stems harbouring galls.

I really don't care about the fuzzy balls :) but did see over on IB on the Elephant book thread where Flyin' Brian's marrying.
Congratulations to Brian and Best Wishes to his Mrs. Brian.
That's fucked up, man.
Geezer, what happened? You got a professional to comment on your blog. And he's a political consultant. Are you secretly planning to run for office in the Spudder State?
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