Rose: Graham Thomas
Class: Shrub, 1983
Hybridizer: David Austin, 1983
Parentage: ‘Charles Austin’ x (‘Iceberg’ x seedling)
Graham Thomas is one of the best hybridized yellow roses by David Austin and my favorite rose. When it was introduced in 1983, it was a novelty because it was the first and real yellow rose to resemble in form and petal arrangement the Old Garden Roses whose color range had been limited to reds, pinks, purples and pale shades. It was named after the late Graham Thomas, one of great garden writers of our time who wrote “The Graham Stuart Thomas Rose Book”, a rose book classic.
Graham Thomas has a soft buttery yellow bloom which is hard to match in any modern roses. Their cupped bloom starts as pure yellow fading into lighter color as it opens. Blooms come both singly and in spray. The growth is straight, tall, some with arching canes and vigorous with pale green foliage. Graham Thomas can reach 6 to 8 ft. in height and can be trained as a climber on a wall, fence or tall pillar.
Graham Thomas is very generous in bloom and quite a good specimen for the exhibition table. Graham Thomas never fails me whenever I exhibit it. Graham Thomas always wins the Best in Modern Shrub. It has a fresh Tea rose fragrance. I planted two plants of Graham Thomas on opposite ends of a parterre at my previous garden and they did quite well. I also planted the blue clematis durandii next to it and they make good companion plants. A stunning combination!
Here is Graham Thomas in my present garden next to a trellis. Photo taken April 2, 2017.
Graham Thomas has won the Royal Horticultural Society Award of Garden Merit in 1993.
Tip #6 – Project a cheerful voice.
Until Next time. Stop and Smell the Roses