English Rose, Austin Rose 'Jude the Obscure'


Family: Rosaceae (ro-ZAY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Rosa (RO-zuh) (Info)
Cultivar: Jude the Obscure
Additional cultivar information:(PP10757, aka AUSjo, Jude the Obscure Climbing)
Hybridized by Austin
Registered or introduced: 1997
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English Rose (aka Austin Rose)



4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 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)

Bloom Color:

Medium yellow (my)

Bloom Shape:


Flower Fragrance:

Very Fragrant

Bloom Time:

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)

6.6 to 7.5 (neutral)

Propagation Methods:

From softwood cuttings

From semi-hardwood cuttings

From hardwood cuttings

By grafting

By budding

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

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:

Castro Valley, California

San Francisco, California

San Jose, California

Old Lyme, Connecticut

Kailua, Hawaii

Bartlett, Illinois

Hampton, Illinois

Lombard, Illinois

Washington, Illinois

Saint Marys, Kansas

Kingston, New Hampshire

Jamesburg, New Jersey

Albuquerque, New Mexico

Beacon, New York

Mogadore, Ohio

Beaverton, Oregon

Portland, Oregon (3 reports)

Austin, Texas

Joshua, Texas

Bellevue, Washington

Gig Harbor, Washington

Olympia, Washington

Tacoma, Washington

Vancouver, Washington

show all

Gardeners' Notes:


On May 28, 2016, Nanthawat from Portland, OR (Zone 8b) wrote:

This is how I would describe the smell..

Jasminum sambac + Fruitloops cereal + Honeysuckle + Verbena + peaches.

If you're Thai, it smells like "Nam Ob".


On Nov 11, 2015, brandoncakes from Kailua, HI wrote:

The most intense fragrance! Before purchasing this rose, I researched to see exactly what the fragrance smelled like. Some say peaches, some say nectarines, some insist strong jasmine tea, and others say myrrh or sangria. I had to try this rose to see what everyone was talking about! After having this rose for 8 months, she has put out about 18 blooms, and each one smelled different! One smelled of strong peaches and white wine, another of jasmine, and others like nectarines and sangria. The scent is really strong, and the color and form is gorgeous! Her petals curl up so they look cup shaped, and do not open much to reveal the button. The blooms stay cup shaped throughout its short time on the stem(yes, Jude shatters quickly). She hasn't climbed much, just looks like a tall shrub... read more


On Mar 13, 2015, Kjani from Gig Harbor, WA wrote:

The best of the best. We run summer guest lodging at our waterfront home and I have one of these in a super large pot on the deck. While she (jude the obscure) is not a show stopper in terms of color of flowers, she has an old-fashioned charm. HOWEVER, the smell draws visitors to her glorious blooms and the scent travels and is unparalled! This is an understatement. This is by far the most delightful smelling rose bar-none. Always people ask for the rose name and WHERE can they buy one. I believe I got mine at heritage roses. While this rose is not something you would plant for show stopping flowers, as a specimen plant out in front for display and passerbys for scent - it is the best-of-the-best and she's a keeper!!! Clean foilage no disease to speak of, hardy and healthy grower... read more


On Sep 11, 2014, lancer23 from San Francisco, CA wrote:

The most outstanding thing about this rose is the obvious strong fragrance of tropical fruit and gardena. You don't have to guess or wait for the scent; it's very consistent and generous. There's only another rose that I grew can compare to the scent of this rose---Olde Romeo.
Jude has the peachy pink color and a cabbage globe like shape flowers, very interesting. The flower buds been munch on by insects, which I can't ID. Maybe beetles or worms. The plant was doing great and then suddenly got sick. So I dug it up and baby it as a potted plant with plenty of TLC, regular water, feed and watch it like a hwak and it got back its health. Its not a rumor that some David Austin rose is hard to take care of because you have to give it all. I plant it at a place where there's othe... read more


On Aug 20, 2014, PrairieFolly from Flint Hills, KS (Zone 5b) wrote:

I've had this rose about 7 years in zone 5a. Some winters I have some winter dieback. It has only gotten about 6 feet tall, so it isn't what I hoped for as a climber, but I would never get rid of it--the fragrance is so wonderful. I give it little care-no spraying, little fertilizer, and have not had any serious disease or pest problems. When it gets a little attention, it gives 3 flushes with a few sporadic blooms between.


On Nov 25, 2012, ju1438 from Redford, MI wrote:

I have Evening Primrose (Oenothera biennis) growing near my Austin roses, which I have found that the Japanese beetles seem to prefer over the roses.

As for aphids, they seem to gravitate in droves to Swamp Milkweed (Asclepia incarnata), also sparing the nearby roses.


On Jan 19, 2012, shopshops from Joshua, TX wrote:

Planted this last year(2011) as a memorium to my dearly departed Grandmother. Came as a bare root from David Austen. I was in a lot of pain from sciatica when I planted this rose and was not able to dig as deep or as wide as recommended. However, I did plant in a raised bed with amended clay.

I was pleasantly surprised by my first year blooms. (I planted in late February here in North Texas). my grandmother's birthday was May 5th and I was hoping for a few blooms on her birthday. I was not disappointed for too long. My first year bare root put out her first bloom in late May. The scent was tropical and intoxicating.
The awful 2011Texas drought soon ruined her blooming. But whilst it lasted it was great. Looking forward to bigger blooms and a bushier plant this year.<... read more


On May 27, 2011, heartopensky from Beacon, NY (Zone 6b) wrote:

The appearance of these flowers is gorgeous, almost double-peony like, and large, usually 4-5" in diameter when moderately open. But the fragrance...I have never smelled anything so lovely in my life. Not remotely hybrid-tea smelling...old rose...with some myrrh maybe? A little citrus maybe? *Divine.* Foliage is a gorgeous dark green, teensy blue undertone, and new growth is reddish-bronze. LOVE it.

That said, mine has struggled a bit to establish. Planted two years ago, it has only had three or so blossoms at a time, with not a ton of repeat. And the aphids love it. And the Japanese beetles love it. It's not just yummy to humans, apparently. :-/

This year, however, it's third, I am cautiously optimistic - I have more blooms that ever just waiting to... 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 after the character in Thomas Hardy's novel of the same name.


On Apr 16, 2006, dakotaroser from Kingston, NH wrote:

This rose was the highlight of all the roses I grew this
past year. Being a first timer with roses you learn fast,
mostly from your mistakes but occassionaly you find a
rose that is perfect. I fed it Mills magic fertilizer and off it went! I had it along the east/south facing
exposure and slightly under the eves of the house so when
it rained it missed most of the beautiful roses. I would have
to agree with one of the reviewers that it is a short lived
rose and rain will make it stay balled up but once it gets
itself established I'm sure there will be many flowers of
all different stages of opening. I couldn't believe a rose
could smell this delicious and that is my major reason for
giving it such a high mark. ... read more


On May 7, 2005, Gindee77 from Hampton, IL (Zone 5a) wrote:

This Austin rose has one of the best fragrances of all the Austins. It's got a sweet, juicy, grapefruit scent that's just luscious! I love the soft color of this rose and it does very well in my zone5 garden.


On Jul 9, 2003, Petsitterbarb from Claremore, OK wrote:

This is a rose with probably the best fragrance of any I've ever stuck my nose into. The ONLY reason that I'm rating it as neutral is that the blooms shatter FAR too soon. It lasts such a short time that it's hardly worth cutting them for a vase. I love the rich creamy color, and the plant is quite healthy, but I like the blooms to stay the course!