Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: English Rose, Austin Rose
Rosa 'Graham Thomas'

Family: Rosaceae (ro-ZAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Rosa (RO-zuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Graham Thomas
Additional cultivar information: (aka Graham Thomas, AUSmas, Lemon Parody)
Hybridized by Austin; Year of Registration or Introduction: 1983

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2 vendors have this plant for sale.

16 members have or want this plant for trade.

View this plant in a garden

English Rose (aka Austin Rose)

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)
6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)
8-10 ft. (2.4-3 m)

4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)
6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

USDA Zone 5a: to -28.8 C (-20 F)
USDA Zone 5b: to -26.1 C (-15 F)
USDA Zone 6a: to -23.3 C (-10 F)
USDA Zone 6b: to -20.5 C (-5 F)
USDA Zone 7a: to -17.7 C (0 F)
USDA Zone 7b: to -14.9 C (5 F)
USDA Zone 8a: to -12.2 C (10 F)
USDA Zone 8b: to -9.4 C (15 F)
USDA Zone 9a: to -6.6 C (20 F)
USDA Zone 9b: to -3.8 C (25 F)
USDA Zone 10a: to -1.1 C (30 F)
USDA Zone 10b: to 1.7 C (35 F)

Bloom Color:
Deep yellow (dy)

Bloom Shape:

Flower Fragrance:
Very Fragrant

Bloom Time:
Mid Summer
Blooms repeatedly


Patent Information:

Other Details:
Resistant to black spot
Resistant to mildew
Resistant to rust

Pruning Instructions:
Blooms on new wood; prune early to promote new growth

Soil pH requirements:
5.6 to 6.0 (acidic)
6.1 to 6.5 (mildly acidic)

Propagation Methods:
From softwood cuttings
From semi-hardwood cuttings
From hardwood cuttings
By grafting
By budding

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By Paulwhwest
Thumbnail #1 of Rosa  by Paulwhwest

By Kell
Thumbnail #2 of Rosa  by Kell

By DaylilySLP
Thumbnail #3 of Rosa  by DaylilySLP

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Thumbnail #4 of Rosa  by pirl

By Calif_Sue
Thumbnail #5 of Rosa  by Calif_Sue

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Thumbnail #7 of Rosa  by kniphofia

There are a total of 47 photos.
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5 positives
6 neutrals
2 negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Neutral FlowersinZone9 On May 15, 2012, FlowersinZone9 from San Jose, CA wrote:

I have a 2-year-old Graham Thomas that is about 8-9 feet tall and 4 feet wide. It is blooming nicely but the flowers have no fragrance. Does anyone know how to remedy this problem? I bout it because I had read it was one of the most fragrant roses available.

Negative aythya_americana On Feb 1, 2010, aythya_americana from Perrysburg, OH wrote:

Mine hasn't had much new growth for some time, and I have suspicions that it may be on its way out. Notwithstanding the bad condition of the bush itself, the flowers are gorgeous.

Positive killdawabbit On Jan 27, 2010, killdawabbit from Christiana, TN (Zone 6b) wrote:

I love Graham Thomas. So far my 2 year old own-root plant has remained between 3 and 4 ft. with no sprawl. No blackspot or mildew. Blooms continuously. One of its best traits is its habit of shedding its petals before they turn ugly.

Neutral Qagrifol On Apr 29, 2009, Qagrifol from Oakland, CA wrote:

First season with my 'Graham Thomas' ... and we're already having a complicated relationship. It was a planted from a container in January.

The blooms are quite superb, large 'old rose' with a faint pleasant aroma. Cut flowers last in the house as long if not longer than any rose I've ever grown.

On the other hand, the plant itself is just odd. I've never had a 'shrub' rose behave like it does. My nursery person said 4 to 5 feet for our area, but we're already past 5 and show no signs of stopping. The canes don't seem substantial enough to support the flower. They just flop. Every which way. They head for the ground like a carpet rose when the buds get full.

When winter arrives it will definitely be moved to a corner or place where it can be supported. We'll see if it improves with some cutting back and pruning after the first bloom this year.

Neutral Joan On Nov 14, 2008, Joan from Belfield, ND (Zone 4a) wrote:

According to David Austin's 2009 Handbook of Roses, they named this rose for the late Graham Thomas, an influential rosarian and garden writer.

Negative kdaustin On Sep 25, 2008, kdaustin from Austin, TX (Zone 8b) wrote:

Giant pile of fungus. Always. One of the worst performers I have ever grown, which was so dissapointing. Maybe its the high humidity? Tried it for 3 years, than yanked. Yes I probably could have sprayed it more, but when all my other roses have no/little problems with the same regimen it looks like Graham was a loser. Flowers are real pretty though.

Neutral crowellli On Oct 2, 2006, crowellli from Houston, TX (Zone 9a) wrote:

I've had 5 different David Austin roses and this one wasn't outstanding, but not bad enough to pull up and discard. In the Houston climate, it was close to 10' and more like a climbing rose in that it needed support and pegging in order for the entire limb to bloom, otherwise it bloomed only on the end of each cane. Not the outstanding in any way.

Positive Moonglow On Jan 6, 2006, Moonglow from Corte Madera, CA wrote:

This is a great rose for 10a. I planted a couple end of June and by December 2005, reached 7'. The blooms are simply gorgeous. Competes with the lush, dark-green foliage.

Looks like mine are going to be monsters this year, and I'm so psyched!

Positive llebpmac_bob On Jun 18, 2005, llebpmac_bob from Zephyr
Canada wrote:

Can be grown in zone 4 with consistant snow cover. It will die back to level of the snow but soon grows back in the summer. I have had it get over 7 feet tall if the weather is right for it. Needs support in my opinion and is better grown against a house or barn, and can use a trellis. Excellent bloomer and not overly blackspot prone for a yellow rose.

Positive Gindee77 On Jun 1, 2005, Gindee77 from Hampton, IL (Zone 5a) wrote:

This is a great Austin rose, it's light yellow blooms brighten up a garden. It's winter hardy in zone 5.

Positive flowerE1 On Nov 17, 2003, flowerE1 from Suffolk, VA wrote:

The pure beauty of the flower makes up for this rose's rapid growth. I am constantly cutting it back, but it doesn't seem to mind and blooms non-stop.

Neutral Lionheart On Oct 2, 2003, Lionheart from Slingerlands, NY wrote:

Will grow in Zone 5 unprotected, but is slow to start and never quite seems to get his act together. The winter and spring of 2002-2003 were quite harsh and not kind to him. He probably should have been protected and is pouting this year. Still, the blooms are a lovely shade of yellow and nicely fragrant.

Could go either way on this one but, when Graham was enjoying milder winters, he was too beautiful to replace.

Neutral Bloomer On Apr 10, 2001, Bloomer from (Zone 9a) wrote:

Austin - 1983
Seedling x (Charles Austin x Iceberg seedling).

Flowers are fully double, deeply cupped, of medium size with a Tea Rose fragramce. Color is a rich, butter-yellow.

David Austin describes it's growth as upright, to 4' tall. However, in warmer climates it can reach 10' or more. Growth is strong, breaking freely at almost every joint to produce flowers.

Produces a flush of bloom in Spring, sporadic blooms through summer.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Phoenix, Arizona
Clayton, California
Corte Madera, California
Fairfield, California
La Jolla, California
Laguna Beach, California
Mckinleyville, California
Newbury Park, California
Oakland, California
San Anselmo, California
San Jose, California (2 reports)
San Leandro, California
Parker, Colorado
Green Cove Springs, Florida
Braselton, Georgia
Marietta, Georgia
Hampton, Illinois
Lincolnwood, Illinois
Lombard, Illinois
Washington, Illinois
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Alfred, Maine
Bar Harbor, Maine
Mashpee, Massachusetts
Wayland, Massachusetts
Choteau, Montana
Elmwood, Nebraska
Amherst, New Hampshire
Albuquerque, New Mexico
Slingerlands, New York
Southold, New York
Baltimore, Ohio
Columbus, Ohio
Mogadore, Ohio
Perrysburg, Ohio
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Beaverton, Oregon
Reading, Pennsylvania
Columbia, South Carolina
Christiana, Tennessee
Knoxville, Tennessee
Maryville, Tennessee
Anderson, Texas
Cedar Creek, Texas
Georgetown, Texas
Houston, Texas (2 reports)
Katy, Texas
Rowlett, Texas
Ogden, Utah
Suffolk, Virginia
Anacortes, Washington
Artondale, Washington
Bellingham, Washington
Seattle, Washington
Spokane, Washington

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