Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: English Rose, Austin Rose
Rosa 'Benjamin Britten'

Family: Rosaceae (ro-ZAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Rosa (RO-zuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Benjamin Britten
Additional cultivar information: (aka AUSencart)
Hybridized by Austin; Year of Registration or Introduction: 1992

» View all varieties of Roses

One vendor has this plant for sale.

4 members have or want this plant for trade.

English Rose (aka Austin Rose)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)

24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

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)

Bloom Color:
Orange red (or)

Bloom Shape:

Flower Fragrance:
Very Fragrant

Bloom Time:
Late Spring/Early Summer
Blooms repeatedly


Patent Information:

Other Details:
Resistant to black spot
Resistant to mildew
Stems are moderately thorny

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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There are a total of 14 photos.
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6 positives
3 neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive karemo On Oct 31, 2014, karemo from Melbourne
Australia wrote:

Performs very well in the Melbourne, AU climate (Zone 9b).
Gets bigger than DA's description - about H 2m (6'6")x W 1.5m (5'). Loves the heat in Summer (up to around 45C/115F) and flowers prolifically.

The only negative is the thorns... soooo many of them! Requires gauntlets to prune :-)

Neutral lancer23 On Jul 20, 2014, lancer23 from San Francisco, CA wrote:

Its neutral rating because I don't grow this rose but saw it at a public garden. Its rather healthy for a DA rose. It has a very vivid almost neon raspberry color which is very attractive to me. Unusual color that is not found in most roses, I didn't see a lot of blooms but then I don't know how much care it gets in the park.

Positive InsaniD On Mar 21, 2013, InsaniD from Columbia, MO wrote:

@Joann - you may want to look at some pictures of rose rosette disease. At least 2 DA roses I've ordered (from the US branch in TX) or over the last 3 years had RRD from the get go and had to be destroyed. Other roses had other issues like canker. 'BB' should have "normal" sized thorns and while it is a bit thorny, it shouldn't be "covered" in them. SO I think something is going on with your bush. If you determine what is going on, please update your review - if it is RRD, then folks need to avoid DA until they get it under control.

I had to get 2 of these from DA. The first had a weeping canker on the shank and looked diseased, so I contacted DA and destroyed that plant. They sent another to replace it, and while it didn't look very good, I went ahead and planted it. Here in MO, it really struggled to establish itself during a year of drought (and late summer shipping) and still managed to bloom a few blooms before winter set in. I won't order from DA in TX again, because I think they have serious husbandry issues (see my review under Garden Watchdog for DA), but wouldn't hesitate to recommend purchasing this rose from a different supplier.

For me one of the perks is that while it has a better smell than many roses (though as noted, not a terribly fragrant DA offering), it is a simpler rose than many DA has been breeding, and BEES can actually feed from this rose. Many DA roses are too densely packed to be any good for bees and insects, though they are lovely.

Neutral JoannCooper On Feb 7, 2013, JoannCooper from Bluffton, SC (Zone 8b) wrote:

I have had excellent success with many Austin Roses, but this is not one of my favorites. The flowers are small and a cherry red color regardless of weather. There is no orange tint as shown in the catalog. I had hoped that cooler fall weather would bring the orange coloring, but not so. I detect on a very slight fragance on my rose.

This is a very strong growing rose for me in Z 8b (South Carolina), in fact it's so wild and wooly I nicknamed it Audry II. It throws out very long, unruly canes COVERED in thorns of all shapes and sizes. It is a bear to handle, consequently I moved it to a remote spot in the garden where it can do it's thing without injury to us or our guests.

One note: Austin recommends this variety for large pots and planters. I grew this plant in a very large planter (24" diameter) for the first year. When I went to move the planter the following spring the plant had rooted into the ground so strongly that the bottom of the pot broke when we tried to pick it up. This was a grafted rose, and I don't know what the root stock was, but the roots were astonishing. Between the rampant root growth and the wild and thorny canes, I would not recommend this rose (at least not the grafted variety) for containers - especially not close to high traffic areas. It probably would, however, make an nice impenitrable hedge.

On the whole, I've been disappointed in this plant, but I give it a neutral rather than negative just because it is such a strong grower. Planted where is has plenty of room and I can admire it from afar, it does just fine. (Now about 4X5 ft at midsummer. ) I would try pegging the canes to the ground, but I don't want to get that close to the plant again!

It does get black spot, so plan to do some spraying. The flowers are only moderately long lasting when cut. One other review said the flowers don't do well in heat, but mine have opened well and lasted a reasonable time - and we have some serious heat and humidity here.

I can really only recommend this plant as a hedging plant any where that you might want to discourage neighboring children, dogs, wild hogs, or a possible invasion of elephants.

Positive valliebeth17 On Jun 25, 2011, valliebeth17 from Crown Point, NY (Zone 4b) wrote:

This is one of my favorite roses. Here in zone 4 the winters kill it back to the ground each year, but it grows back to a full beautiful bush covered with gorgeous, full deep pink flowers with a tinge of coral. And the scent! Roses and raspberries, absolutely heavenly.

Positive delil72 On Aug 1, 2010, delil72 from Monmouth Beach, NJ wrote:

I don't know if I have a more hardy, robust rose in my garden. It never gets blackspot and grows by leaps and bounds every year and blooms heavily from early summer through fall - blooms are not as heavily old-rose scented as some austins but they definitely have a moderately strong nice, light, fruity type of rose scent. They are a real bright cerise pink/red magenta type of color...

Positive Clary On Jul 4, 2010, Clary from Lewisburg, PA (Zone 6b) wrote:

The flowers are round and the plant has a shrubby form. Firm canes holds themselves upright without support. The flowers smell very "cherry" and are cherry in color as well.

The flowers are rather tender and don't take extreme heat - they wilt before opening - but the plant hasn't shown any distress as long as it's well-watered.

Positive baiissatva On Dec 2, 2009, baiissatva from Dunedin
New Zealand wrote:

Very pretty bicoloured peony type flower in my garden, with a fresh medium strength fruity fragrance.
It's only drawback for me is it's curious habit of losing the vivid pink colouration about an hour after it's picked, loss of water from the petals I suppose but it's a strange phenomenon that I also see in 'Kronenbourg' roses.

Hardy, doesn't mind a little shade, quick to establish.

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 in commemoration of the life and work of the famous English composer, conductor and performer.


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

Fayetteville, Arkansas
San Francisco, California
Washington, Illinois
Columbia, Missouri
Monmouth Beach, New Jersey
Crown Point, New York
Mill City, Oregon
Lewisburg, Pennsylvania
Malvern, Pennsylvania
Norristown, Pennsylvania
Bluffton, South Carolina
Columbia, South Carolina
North Augusta, South Carolina
Sterling, Virginia
Winchester, Virginia

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