Japanese beetles on roses


I would like to give my roses away as I will be downsizing but I also have a terrible infestation of Japanese beetles.
How can I be sure that I don’t send any beetles or grubs along with the plants?


Thank you for your question.

Early spring or early fall is the ideal time to transplant your roses when they are dormant.  Cool temperatures and frequent rain will give the plant plenty of time to take root in its new location.  When transplanting roses in spring, waiting until after all danger of frost or freezing has passed. 

Whenever a plant/shrub is transplanted some of the plant/shrubs roots will be cut and the remaining roots will need to resettle to be able to draw nutrients and water out of the soil to survive.

Rake the soil around your roses in spring to expose any Japanese beetle larvae before you plan to dig the roses up.

Ideally this is done prior to June when the beetles generally start to appear on roses.

Generally, to control Japanese beetles you can either control the adult or the larvae. The best method (although still time consuming but strangely satisfying) is to go out in the early morning or in the late evening when they are not as likely to fly around and simply knock them into a small bucket/jar of water (add a few drops of soap) where they drown. You will need to begin this process at the end of June or the beginning of July and continue until sometime in early August.

When transplanting, try and disturb the roots as little as possible. A cool overcast day with forecasted rain is ideal. Never transplant during the hottest part of the day or during a period of drought. When you are ready to dig the roses up, it is best to immediately have the new owners of the rose put the plant in its new location- which means preparing the hole in the new location beforehand. The general rule of thumb is to dig a hole twice the width of the root ball.

The following link provides further information about transplanting roses:


March 24, 2021