Rosa Graham Thomas

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Rosa 'Graham Thomas'
Rosa 'Graham Thomas' J1.JPG
GenusRosa hybrid
Hybrid parentageRosa 'Charles Austin' × Iceberg
Cultivar groupModern shrub / English rose
Cultivar'Graham Thomas'
Marketing namesAusmas, Lemon Parody
OriginDavid C.H. Austin, 1983

Graham Thomas is a rose bred by David C.H. Austin released in 1983, and named for the horticulturalist and populariser of old roses, Graham Thomas.

Graham Thomas has been described as "the most popular" of Austin's creations[1] and the one that fixed his popularity with the public;[2] it was the first Austin rose to win the Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit at the Chelsea Flower show ten years after its introduction in 1993.[3]

A cross between the white floribunda, 'Iceberg', and another "English" rose, 'Charles Austin', the double flowers are cupped and of a quartered old rose style formation, and described variously as "rich deep yellow', "golden yellow", "amber" and "ochre yellow", that fades paler as the bloom ages.[4] In 1988, Modern Garden Roses noted "Its importance and novelty value lie in its colour. Never before has such a positive yellow colour appeared among roses of this type of growth."[5]

It has a strong "tea" scent.[4]

A small shrub of 1.2 metres (3 ft 11 in) in its native England, it can grow up to 4 metres (13 ft) into a small climber in warmer areas.[6]

Austin used it extensively in further breeding; some cultivars created were 'Evelyn' and 'The Pilgrim' in 1991, 'Charlotte' and 'Molineaux' in 1994, and 'Pegasus' in 1995. Other breeders have also used 'Graham Thomas' in their breeding programs, most notably Massad in 1992 with 'Versigny' and Meilland in 2006 for 'Elbflorenz'.

It was named The World's Favourite Rose, entering the Rose Society hall of fame in 2009.[7]


  1. ^ Taylor, Barbara Lea (1 January 2019). "Rose breeder, David Austin's, lasting legacy". Stuff. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  2. ^ "In memoriam: Photos of David Austin's most beautiful roses". Starts at 60. 23 December 2018. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  3. ^ Blodgett, Bonnie (29 December 2018). "Blundering Gardener: The gardening world lost a friend of roses in December". Twin Cities. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  4. ^ a b "Graham Thomas". Paul Barden Roses. Archived from the original on 31 May 2018. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  5. ^ Harkness, Peter; Page, Vincent (1988). Modern Garden Roses. The Globe Pequot Press. p. 40. ISBN 0871067447.
  6. ^ Taylor, Barbara Lea (13 April 2018). "The colour of sunshine: the history behind one of the greatest yellow roses ever". Stuff. Retrieved 18 April 2019.
  7. ^ "WFRS Hall of Fame". Retrieved 20 April 2019.

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