English Rose, Austin Rose '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
Registered or introduced: 1983
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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

Foliage Color:


Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


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

Meridian, Idaho

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

Toms River, New Jersey

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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Gardeners' Notes:


On Sep 15, 2016, ponderosa100 from Meridian, ID wrote:

Found this rose bush slow to make flowers- pretty blooms but not prolific- Golden Celebration is a much better producer with better fragrance from the Austin rose collection. You get a big bush with minimal flowers.


On Nov 9, 2015, NJIrisGuy from Toms River, NJ (Zone 7a) wrote:

Lovely, fragrant Rose; Good performer, grower here in Zone 7A. Those of you in Texas ---> Roses don't perform well in your State, so I'm not surprised that there are so many bad reviews of this rose. But this Rose is a lovely
addition to any garden and I'm glad it adds such beauty to
my garden.


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.


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.


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.


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... read more


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.


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.


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.


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!


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.