Return to the Gardening in Canada Forum | Post a Follow-Up

what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

Posted by jannabeen z5 US/z6 Canada (My Page) on
Sun, Mar 11, 07 at 15:00

What David Austin or English roses do well for you?

I've been inspired by the rose garden in Sardinia post: and I'd like to add more roses to my little urban garden. I'd like to find out which roses do well in our climate, are disease resistant, fragrant, and to die for. I am especially looking for either pale colors or yellow, peach, apricot (I already have some medium pinks).


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

Hi Jannabeen, Here's a few of D.A. roses I have and want.

Abraham Darby, to date my favorite, repeat bloomer, grow as a shrub or a climber. Colour, shades of apricot and yellow, maybe a tinge of pink. Vigorous and hardy in all areas, has a fruity fragrance.

Glamis Castle, a white tinted buff at first, repeat bloomer, myrrh type fragrance, more suited to front of border. Height to 4 ft.

Golden Celebration, one of the largest flowering D.A. roses, rich golden yellow. More of a tea fragrance. Grow as a shrub or climber. This is one I'm adding to my D.A.'s this year.

Graham Thomas, repeat bloomer, disease resistant, vigorous grower, grow as a shrub or climber. Tea rose fragrance. Very hardy and gets loaded with bloom.

Evelyn, a soft apricot tinged wih pink, this is another one I'm looking for myself. Grow as a shrub or climber, few thorns , DH will like that, apparently a wonderful fragrance, old rose, with a fruity note, like peaches and apricots.

Constance Spry, although it only blooms once, is a lovely pink, makes a beautiful sight as a climber. Myrhh like fragrance, I myself will always have this one.

There are many, many, more, these are just some of the ones I like. Another thing, buy them on their own roots if possible, they do much better than the grafted types.


RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

If you check the Pickering Nursery website, you will find all that information on Austen roses. The roses that are available in Ontario are grafted into hardier roots making it very durable in our cold climate.


RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

David Austen roses are breathtaking. However, they don't survive without lots of help from me here in Montreal.

I have switched to Canadian bred roses -- Explorer roses. You have nothing to do for them in the autumn. I have several climber (pillar) roses. WILLIAM BAFFIN is my best. It is about 7 feet tall. At first it was tied to a pole, but once the canes learned to grow up and not out, they grew in that direction without the pole. Every spring I tighten the cord which keeps them growing up. The pink double roses bloom about 2-3 weeks in June and are a show stopper.

I have THERESE BUGNET which flowers in June through August. It is 6 feet tall, 6 feet wide. It does not do as well as the WILLIAM BAFFIN.

I have another climber (pillar) Canadian bred which I don't recall the name. Three large rose bushes are sufficient for my size garden.

The Canadian bred roses do not have the color range that David Austen has but as we get older we like to take things easier and these roses do the trick for me.


RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

Lillian... Lillian Austin. Named after his mother. Can't beat this rose. The colour is that of a sunset, or should I say those of a sunset. There are yellows fading to peach fading to a deeper colour of peach/pink/orange - can't really describe it. Just beautiful.

I used to have many Austins (14), but having moved into deer country, had to give most of them up. There is no way I could part with the two Lillians I have. I don't protect them for the winter and they do fine. North facing coldest section of our property.

Get a Lillian!

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

If you care to ship from closer to home, Cedar Hollow Rose Farm has an excellent reputation and are located in Lumby BC.

Here is a link that might be useful: cedar hollow rose farm

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

My david austen which I left potted outdoors, but in a protected area, has come out of winter just fine.

Your in Zone 6, I'm in zone 5a. -- Pickering Nurseries which supplies David Austen roses are also in Zone 5. So that is indicative that the roses will do well in our zone. Just use the same kind of mulching we all do for winterizing our roses.

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

Thank you for all of your advice. I don't have much experience with roses. I bought a Heritage DA several years ago (own root) but it didn't survive the winter. It was a rough one, and a lot of things didn't come back (lavender, grape vines). So maybe that wasn't a fair test. I am partial to the DAs because of fragrance, which unfortunately a lot of the really hardy, Canadian-bred roses don't have too much of. I am drooling over the Cedar Hill catalog!

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?


Your DA likely died because it has it's own roots. It's not hardy for the zone. The hardier root is the key for plant survival in our cold climate. This is the reason why DA's available in Pickering Nursery, for example, are grafted to hardier roots. The DAs are patented plants which means the upper portion comes from the UK where they are bred. You can of course go direct to the source DA's to seek answers as to how they export their plants and how they are grafted and why the fragrance has diminished on some varieties.

As for lavenders - I don't know what varieties you had but I had several in my old garden (zone 5a). Plan to do the same with my new garden. I used munsteads. There are other varieties available here that are not suitable for our climate. Anyway, the ones that survived our cold climate were planted in fast draining soil. I conditioned that bed with plenty of builder's sand (and peat & compost). Lavenders hate being in wet soil. Mine had been a clay bed. I also don't do any hard pruning until well into midspring. this is because the dead twigs protect the plant by catching snow which in turns insulate the plant from harsh winter winds, heaves and thaws.... It also helps if you mulch them.

Hope this helps with your future projects.


RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

I'm having a lot of hit and misses with David Austin roses as well in my 5b Southern Ontario garden. I started in 2002 with three container grown from local nursery: L.D. Braithwaite, Brother Cadfael and Graham Thomas. The first two kicked the bucket within 2 years, I lost GT over the winter of 2005/06, it was quite dead last spring. In 2004 I bought bareroots from Pickerings: Sophy's Rose, Gertrude Jekyll, The Pilgrim, Winchester Cathedral and Sharifa Asma. Only Winchester Cathedral and The Pilgrim are still with me, though The Pilgrim is on borrowed time (stingy bloomer, blackspot magnet). Last year I purchased four more Austins, all container grown from local nursery: a replacement GT, A Shopshire Lad, Heritage, and Teasing Georgia. Hopefully these new ones all came through the winter okay. I didn't get a chance to mound up WC and Pilgrim this past winter, they are in a bed on the east side of my house so somewhat protected from north winds. I did notice last night they both have green canes so they live! The new ones did get mounded up so I guess we'll see next month when I remove the winter protection.

Love Winchester Cathedral, though the fragrance is off-putting to some (everyone's sense of smell is different). Good bloomer, blooms through November usually.

A Shopshire Lad impressed me last year, was blooming soon after planting and was very vigrous.

Heritage also looked excellent, though didn't bloom as much as ASL.

The new Graham Thomas did very well (I really love this rose!).

Teasing Georgia ended up being transplanted halfway through the year as it didn't do well at first in the bed I planted it in. I moved it to the bed with the other new ones and after it was moved it put on new growth and settled in well. We'll see how it does this year (if it survived winter!).

The Pilgrim has always been a bit of a stingy bloomer and blackspot magent, but then it does bloom and it is so pretty that I give it more chances.

I must be a glutton for punishment to keep trying the Austin's but they are just too pretty to resist.


RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

I've had reasonibly good luck with my austins, as far as hardiness goes..Graham Thomas is my 1st, i bought him 10 years ago, blooms well and comes back quick from winter kill.. Mary Rose very hardy good bloomer 5 years now..Othello, not my favourite, think i'll replace him this year. 5 years..Gertrude Jekyll dies back quite abit here, but always manages at least one good show..7 yrs.L.D.Braithwaite was good the first 3 years and has kinda lost his vigor..6 years..I'll replace a few over the next couple a years and try some of the newer ones....I still do like these roses..

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

Tess, you ARE a masochist! I guess growing Austins is pretty hit or miss with our climate. Nevertheless, I'm seduced by the big blooms and scent of the Austins. I ordered several roses from Cedar Hollow and I CAN'T WAIT for spring to arrive.

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

Definitely a masochist! Hopefully this year I'll remember to wear gloves when pruning, I now have too many battle scars!

I think some are definitely hardier than others. I walked around my east bed last night and looked at Winchester Cathedral and it actually has one cane that is green about 12 inches up! Really surprising! I like this rose in particular because mine sometimes blooms white AND pink (reverting to Mary Rose on one cane). I'll be out there this weekend starting my garden clean up - things are looking really ratty now that the snow has finally melted.


RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

  • Posted by cziga Zone 5: (Toronto) (My Page) on
    Wed, Mar 28, 07 at 11:09

I ordered Sharifa Asma from Cedar Hollow (own root,I believe) and now I'm a little apprehensive. I hope she survives next winter. I was told that she was one of the hardier Austins.

I was also going to order Happy Child, but by the time I got there, all plants were sold out (Hortico). I still want this rose if I can find it somewhere . . . anyone have trouble keeping this one alive over a Canadian winter?

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

Humber Nurseries in Brampton is listing Happy Child in their online catalog. Maybe give them a call to make sure they have it.

I know I'll be dropping by there in the next few weeks seeking some unusual perennials - they always have such an incredible selection.


Here is a link that might be useful: Happy Child at Humber Nurseries

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

  • Posted by cziga Zone 5: (Toronto) (My Page) on
    Wed, Mar 28, 07 at 19:23

Tess, thank you for the tip. I have sent them an email and will see if they respond. I hope they've still got it, I know i'm running a little late here :) Thanks again!

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

I'm resurecting this thread because I have a bit of a problem with my austens. These plants were only set in the ground this spring. South East facing bed. It gets a lot of good sun through out the day. I noticed that the blooms started to burn in this heat that is normal for summer. What do you do to prevent these burns? I'm now thinking that the plants require some shade perhaps from a tree or a small pergola. For those of you with the same plants, please let me know what your experiences have been with them. Thanks.


RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

I love my Graham Thomas and Heritage roses. I'll admit I am not a good caretaker but they bloom in spite of me. I am curious about Jude the Obscure. I also have an "Eden" rose that I ordered years ago from Winterthur, I think, and it just blooms it's head off, some of the most beautiful blossoms I have seen. I need to know when to prune all of the above.


RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

I am resurecting this thread....

For a newbie to roses like me, which of the explorer roses ( hardy in canada zone 5b )would you recommend to a first timer?

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

It is important to remember that I live in Richmond / Vancouver BC. I can only talk about how the roses doing here in my garden, with my soil and our wet weather.

I like the following roses for: strong growth, fragrance and colour.

Favorites: Abraham Darby, Crown Princess Margaretta, Charlotte, Gertrude Jekyll, Golden Celebration, Jude The Obscure, Pat Austin, Summer Song, Sweet Juliet, Williams Shakepear 2000, Tamora

Here is the list of my DA roses

Abraham Darby - probably the healthiest
Charlotte - pretty good
Crown Princess Magaretta - pretty good
Jude The Obscure - great fragrant
Tamora - very pretty
Golden Celebration - very strong growing, large flower
Graham Thomas - strong growth but black spot somewhat in late summer
Gertrude Jekyll - great rose
Evelynn - A diva but when she behaves, she is beautiful and fragrant
Mary Magdelene - Always performes, nice fresh fragrant
Summer Song - Beautiful color, very healthy
Pat Austin - Great color, wonderful fragrant
LD Braith Wade - Beautiful flower, not much fragrant
Winchester Cathedral - very strong growing, strong fragrant
Falstaff - strong growth but defoliage. Very beautiful flowers. Very little fragrant in the sun
The Dark Lady - large beautiful color, no fragrant
William Shaepear 2000 - great rose with nice fragrant
Mary Rose - strong growht, light fragrant
Sweet Juliet - strong growth, nice fragrant

New ones this year, I might be able to talk about them next summer :)

Gentle Hermione
Lady Emma Hamilton - the color is wonderful and the fragrance is out standing. But I have only got 3 flowers so far this year so ... :)
Sharifa Asma
Scepter Isle
Teasing Georgia
Generous Gardener

RE: what's your favorite David Austin / English rose?

I am in Barrie, Ontario and it is quite a cold area.
I am not here in winter, rather in Florida, but apparently there is usually a heavy snow blanket, which I would expect helps

Barrie, has a Rose Society even Huronia Rose Society

I have several David Austin roses and others, but I mostly don't remember any of the names
They seem to be well and have not lost any in the three summers I have been here. This is the fourth I guess

What I do though, in the autumn, is throw bags of leaves on all my flower beds. Lots of them abut a foot deep over the entire beds. And I don't remove them in the spring. I know you are supposed to do so, I never seem to have the time or energy.
Yes I think as you get older, you have more love and more time for the garden, but not more energy.

And I can't say my favourite David Austin as I don't remember their names but I do like the Graham rose and my son is Graham. As well I just bought one, by name of Grace,and havae a daughter Grace, that looks good and I have just planted it.

I think my favourite rose though, is a white , really white rose. I have two very white roses and they are gorgeous. Dark green leaves tall and no sign of disease .

If you wanted to hear a little bit of a radio garden program about roes look up
Ken Druse and his program Real Dirt
for the week of 7 - 2 -10 he had as his quest rosarian Marci Martin from Elizabeth Park Hartford Connecticut
was a nice program Ken Druse usually has an interesting program

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Gardening in Canada Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here