Leaf Hopper

Common Rose Pest

The rose Leaf Hopper can be a serious pest in the rose garden.

These small insects (about 1/2" long) are very fast moving, and usually manage to either fly away or jump to another part of the bush, as soon as the plant is touched. (Thus the name... 'leaf' 'hopper'

A heavy population of them will do serious damage to the leaves on your rose bush.

The little bugs are white/opaque in color, and look similar to a small grasshopper. They are wedge shaped insects that fly, and also run sideways, and jump.

This garden pest, overwinters in the egg stage, either on the rose cane, or on the bark of an apple tree.

The young leaf hoppers emerge with the warm weather of spring, and begin feeding on the undersides of the rose leaves. They puncture the leaf and suck the sap from the plant, causing the stippling of the leaves.

Life Cycle

Once mature, the females deposit eggs (1-6 a day) on the leaf veins or leaf stems of the rose bush, thus producing another generation of leaf hoppers that hatch in 6-9 days.

The young, known as (nymphs)molt 5 times before becoming an adult. This process takes 5 weeks. You will sometimes see the white skin shed by a nymph still attached to the bottom of a damaged leaf.

The second generation feeds all summer, producing more eggs that will emerge the following spring.

A large population of them feeding on your rose leaves and laying eggs in the canes, could kill the rose plant. (Just a few insects will do little damage to a healthy plant)

Organic Methods of Control

Beneficial Insects

Lady bugs, Minute Pirate Bugs and Lace Wings are all predators of both the eggs and the young larvae! They are also eaten by damsel bugs and assassin bugs.

Plants That Repel Them

They are repelled by Tansy, Alliums, and wormwood. I suggest you plant Alliums close to the rose bushes (garlic).

Organic Control

Spot treat with insecticidal soap, thoroughly covering both sides of the leaves. To make this soap more effective, mix one quart of the spray with one tablespoon isopropyl alcohol, making it easier to penetrate the outer shell of the insect.

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rose pests

Find more answers to your gardening issues with rose diseases and pests.

lady bug

Do you know which bugs are actually GOOD for your garden?

Not all bugs in the garden are bad... Some will actually defend your garden by eating the unwanted ones.

Learn about beneficial insects...

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