Rose: Crown gall

categories: Flowers Ornamentals Rose Rose Diseases

revision date: 2023-02-07 12:00

Corky-looking growth at the crown of rose bush.
Crown gall on crown of rose.
Photo by: R.S. Byther


Crown gall on roses usually occurs at or just beneath the soil surface. It may also be found on stems and roots. Young galls appear as a soft thickening in stems or roots and are green to white in color. Older galls are woody, dark and corky-looking on the outside, and light-colored on the inside. The bacterium that causes crown gall is present in the soil and infects through wounds on the roots or stem. It can be spread from infected soil by water movement. Damage to plants varies with location and size of galls.

Management Options

Use Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for successful plant problem management.

Non-chemical Management

Select non-chemical management options as your first choice!

  • Plant disease-free materials.
  • Avoid wounding roots and crown when planting or cultivating.
  • Wash hands and disinfect pruning tools frequently.
  • Remove and destroy infected plants. Also remove roots and surrounding soil where possible.
  • Replant only resistant species in infected soil.

Chemical Management

IMPORTANT: Visit Home and Garden Fact Sheets for more information on using pesticides.

  • None recommended