Must Have Austins Roses for the Bay Area

bayarea_girl(NorCA 9)April 14, 2014

[NorCA 9b] I'm looking to plant 5-6 Austins Roses in the front yard and wonder if you can recommend any must have David Austin roses for the Bay Area (the biggest problem I have is powdery mildew). I'm thinking of Queen of Sweden and William Shakespeare 2000, etc... Please give explanation of your choices.Thank you for your help.

This post was edited by bayarea-girl on Mon, Apr 14, 14 at 6:14

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portia(PA 6B, Brandywine)

Golden Celebration, Heritage and Evelyn all did wonderfully for me in my garden in San Jose for 4 years. Heritage was probably the weakest, but it was my only own-root so it never really quite got legs. Both GC and Evelyn got to be quite large and bloomed prolifically. Not a lot of disease, though my biggest complaint was with Evelyn the flowers were many-petalled and wouldn't often open all the way--and for GC they would go from bud to open to blowing all within two days, so I never really got to enjoy them. But they smelled divine, GC is one of my favorite Austins if you like a sunny gold color.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 8:18AM
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I am in the East Bay Delta area and don't normally have any PM. But a couple of months here were wonderfully rainy and I did have a little. Are you on the Peninsula?

If you are closer to me, I can tell you what I have that is doing well. I have about 14 DAs and 5 of them are in 24 gallon pots.

Let me know if your are close.


    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 11:10AM
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jo_pyeweed(z9 SF Bay Area)

I posted these details on a recent Austin thread:

I am in the mid-Peninsula a block from the Bay. Summer highs rarely get into the 70s (F) and we get light frost for a few days in winter. Powdery mildew is a menace and anthracnose and cercospora trouble the roses that are prone to "spotting". Rust has been a problem on some of my roses the last two years. My garden is no-spray.

Belle Story - grafted. 10+ years. Spring and fall flushes with smattering of blooms in between. Good health but is prone to cercospora spots in summer. It has earned its place in my small suburban garden because of its enchanting and breath-taking blooms. Great fragrance, as well.

Molineux - I have 2. Grafted (10+ years) and own root (4th year) and . Always in bloom. Good health. My workhorses. the grafted rose is 6 feet tall and 5 feet wide. The own-root is 5 X 4 (it was bought as a band and was very slow in growth the first 2 years).

Geoff Hamilton - own root; 5th year. Gorgeous blooms. A once-bloomer for me. I have seen it grown grafted in a warmer summer area where it has 3 big flushes. Will be gone from my garden if the drought in California persists.

Crown Princess Margareta - Mine is own root in its 4th year. Good spring flush and then all she wants to do is throw out long thin thorny canes; I have almost no rebloom from her the rest of the year. I am tired of constantly hacking her back in attempts to control her. A few miles inland, a CPM, grafed and grown as a shrub, is almost constantly in bloom. CPM will be gone from my garden after this spring.

Mary Rose - own root; 4th year. So far, she is staying small. Great fragrance, good rebloom and a healthy plant. A favorite.

Abraham Darby - own root, 4th year. I am trying to grow it as a small climber. It is generous of bloom and has decent health. The blooms leave something to be desired (mine don't always look like the pics on HMF) and rust has shown up on it this past year. I would replace it with a better rose but for its fragrance...

Young Lycidas - grafted, 4th year. Good repeat and blooms are very fragrant. Color is lovely - magenta-purple with a silvery sheen. Foliage is, well, weird. Crinkley and appears diseased but is not. Needs staking as the canes are pencil-thin and can't hold the heavy blooms.

Strawberry Hill - grafted; 3rd year. Fragrant blooms in shades of pink, peach and lilac depending on the weather. Rivals Molineux in generosity of bloom. Nasty, wicked thorns. Ackward when I grew it as a shrub - pencil thin canes with huge trusses of blooms face down in the mud; I now grow it as a small climber and it's a constant chore to keep tying back and controlling the canes. Unfortunately, prone to mildew and rust in my garden. (I hadn't seen rust in my garden before). I am hoping it becomes more disease resistant with age as its foliage when not mildewed or looking like cheetos is absolutely lovely.

The Wedgwood Rose - Grafted; 3rd year. This rose has me completely baffled. I get 4 flushes but each flush has only 3-4 blooms. The size of blooms have ranged from the size of a quarter to 4 inches. Disease-free.

The following were added to my garden March of last year, so they are still new. I am adding my observations on health and bloom this past year. All are grafted.

Princess Anne - lovely shade of magenta-pink. Much admired by visitors. I can't detect a fragrance but most others say it is strong and very pleasant. Good-looking shrub. Canes are covered in thorns but they are not vicious. Stopped blooming after October.

Wollerton Old Hall - lovely blooms. Great fragrance. Bloomed well into December. Is my favorite of the new four. Not low-thorn, as noted in David Austin's catalog.

Lady Emma Hamilton - would grow it for the fragrance alone. Repeat seems to be very good. She has been troubled by cercospora or anthracnose. It is particularly bad this spring.

Princess Alexandra of Kent - big blooms with a color range of pink and coral. Fragrance is iffy but, when there, it is pleasant. Has been constantly in bloom and is blooming now. Unfortunately, prone to powdery mildew. It's in an east facing bed and I will be moving it to a south-facing one to see if I can keep the PM in check. Also, the blooms have a tendency to ball so I am hoping the south side will help in that regard as well. (I try not to get roses with a high petal could but I guess I wasn't paying attention when I ordered this one.) Mine is already 7 feet wide and 5 feet tall. And, I have 2 - both placed in the front of the garden bed. Sigh.

My favorites - Wollerton Old Hall, Princess Anne, Belle Story, Mary Rose
Workhorses (for continuity of bloom) - Molineux, Strawberry Hill
Top in fragrance - Lady Emma Hamilton, Abraham Darby, Young Lycidas, Wollerton Old Hall (disclaimer: some people have intensely disliked its scent)


    Bookmark   April 14, 2014 at 5:13PM
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bayarea_girl(NorCA 9)

Thank you everyone for the helpful comments. I'm in South Bay (Silicon Valley).

    Bookmark   April 15, 2014 at 2:35AM
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