My neighbor's forsythia is in bloom and today I was out pruning my roses. I had been so happy with the amount of live cane this past mild winter allowed me to leave on my roses...until I started to run into canes with obvious swellings from rose stem girdler. Every single cane of Bayse's Purple had to be taken out. More than half of my large rugosa Polareis was infested. Other roses had an odd cane or two here or there - and then I got to my two Lillian Gibsons, the roses I went to so much trouble to find because they would be large and cane hardy. They are all that, and apparently they must also be perfect egg laying ground for those little bronze beetles whose larva kill off rose canes. I had to cut out many, many lovely long canes that were just beginning to leaf out. And I had such hopes for them to screen me from the neighbor's yard this summer. Shoot.
It ruined my tranquil day out in the garden and I had to come inside. Now I'm doing laundry and fuming helplessly, while I ponder. At my old home out in the country, there were wild raspberry and blackberry brambles everywhere so I knew I could never be free of this particular pest. But here at my new home in town, no one nearby has raspberries. No one else in the neighborhood even grows roses. How far away are these little beetles traveling to reach my roses?