Anyone know what could be causing this?


I'm hoping that someone can help diagnose what is wrong with my rose.
Last year I planted this David Austin climbing rose called Madame Gregoire Staechelin. See link: Mme Grégoire Staechelin - David Austin Roses.

Our soil type is heavy clay, so I spent considerable time digging in plenty of organic matter and horticultural grit before planting. This improved it greatly. On planting I also used the root grow mycorrhizal fungi. The rose grew well for the first couple of months last year, but then quickly plateaued out for the majority of the summer, despite being fed and it receiving 6-7 hours of sunlight. This Spring I treated the rose for Blackspot & fed it with David Austin rose food in Spring, I also bought Uncle Tom's Rose tonic to use as a foliar feed spray. After the Blackspot cleared up, the new growth looked fine, but now the ends of the leaves are turning brown and curling up. I also can't understand why it has such poor vigour.

Can anyone explain what this might be and what I'm doing wrong?

Many thanks






  • artjakartjak Posts: 4,168

    Hi, the soil looks a bit dry...did you plant it where a rose had been before? There is a condition known as rose repeat disease, caused by planting a rose where one was before.image

  • Dave MorganDave Morgan Posts: 3,122

    To me it looks a bit of a mess. The black spot is back, and it needs to be pruned back hard to rectify the shape. As black spot is a fungal disease, hygiene is critical, so cutting out the affected stems and burning them will be necessary.

    You need to create an open bowl shape when pruning so prune to outward facing buds only.

    When you treat for black spot, use a watering can as the fungal spores will persist in the soil. I can't figure out how much airflow around the plant you have, it looks to be stuck in a corner and that won't help it.

    Pruning now won't hurt it, and after the black spot treatment mulch with FYM or good garden compost.

    Let it go for a few months and see how it goes after that. I think it's position and the airflow around it is the root cause, the fungal spores will gather and persist if the airflow is bad.

    If it doesn't improve, then I'd move it to increase the airflow and start again.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 42,757

    @ Dave Morgan - not sure if you'd noticed that this is a climbing rose - re your reference to creating an 'open bowl shape' when pruning.  image

    A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in - Greek proverb 
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 10,145

    I think you should explain your problem directly to the team at David Austin.  I have found them very helpful in the past in advising me on roses hardy enough for my garden.



    The Vendée, France
  • Dave MorganDave Morgan Posts: 3,122

    Didn't notice that dove, but even for a climber it needs attention.

  • image


    Thanks for the replies everyone.

    artjak, I don't think under watering is the problem. When I do so I'm also careful not to wet the foliage too.  To my knowledge there hasn't been a rose planted in the surrounding area before this one.

    Dave: I've added a photo to show where I'm trying to grow the climber. I want to train it up the fence and then around the trellis on the decking, this is why it looks straggly at the moment. Do you think pruning it is still necessary? I've been reluctant to do so because of how slow the growth rate has been.  Do you think the damage to the leaves is Black spot returning? It doesn't look like the typical Black spot which it had first time, which looked very much like what you would find in a google image search.

    Obelixx: That's a great idea, I'll message them too.

    Oddly, I actually bought  2 of these climbing roses from the same place at the same time, one for me and the other for my mum. They were both planted the same weekend, yet the one at my mum's is about 3 times the size, it gets roughly the same amount of sunlight. It must be something to do with the conditions here. Would it be possible that one is less vigorous than the other, a weaker plant?

    Thanks again

  • Dave MorganDave Morgan Posts: 3,122

    That clarifies things Mike, so it isn't airflow. I suspect you have a very weak plant and that could be for any number of reasons. You'd need to reshape the rose, but that won't cure the problem.

    I'd contact David Austin and explain things, I've found them very customer conscious, point out the advice you have sought, I'm sure they will help.

  • To me it looks like a leaf feed has been used that is too strong and burnt the leaves. A feed like uncle Toms will do this The plant will discard the burnt leaves and make new ones. Dont do anything the rose will heal itself

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