February 10, 2020

Literary collection blooms with arrival of celebrated classics in 2020

David Austin Roses is delighted to announce the introduction of two wonderful new characters to its collection of fine, British grown English Roses.


Celebrating the distinguished works of George Eliot, Silas Marner: The Weaver of Raveloe (1861) and James Woodforde’s The Diary of a Country Parson (1758-1802), the new arrivals offer visually stunning and beautifully fragrant additions to the world-leading breeder’s collection of twenty literature-inspired roses.

Named for the unassuming, reclusive yet kindhearted hero of Eliot’s classic novel, Silas Marner (Ausraveloe) is an unfussy rose of soft mid pink, bearing petals which are pale on the reverse and fade at the edges, creating a gentle quality. Held on red stems, the medium-sized cupped blooms have relaxed, almost ruffled petals set around an attractive button eye. Flanked by glossy, dark green foliage, the rose is enhanced by a sumptuous medium-strong Old Rose fragrance, exuding accents of fruity lemon, green banana and apricot. A very healthy, abundant variety with good repeat flowering, Silas Marner forms a medium-sized shrub of arching growth. Shade tolerant, its fresh pink blooms will sing out in shadier spots, or why not combine with grey toned foliage in a bed or border.

Paying tribute to Woodforde’s acclaimed narrative – an informal yet richly insightful account of the daily life of a late 18th century English clergyman – The Country Parson (Ausclergy) is a pretty, yet feisty rose of Scottish decent, bearing fully open, medium-large, almost flat rosettes of pure yellow. Appearing gracefully translucent towards the outer edges of each bloom, the petals create a ‘halo’ effect. Featuring greyish green leaves and a covering of modest spiny thorns, this tough little rose is softened by a medium-strong fragrance; a deliciously fruity blend of sweet apricot, green apple and honey, which on a warm day exudes the richness of its apricot notes. A robust and healthy variety, it forms a rounded small to medium sized shrub, giving continuous, plentiful blooms from June through to the first frosts. The Country Parson will work well planted in a pot on patios which may only get a few hours of sun. Alternatively, when planted en-masse as a hedge or as a group of three in a border, the glowing blooms will give an illuminating effect.

Richard Austin, Head of Marketing commented:”We are excited and proud to introduce Silas Marner and The Country Parson to the collection in 2020, both of which will be available from the end of February along with the new 2020 Handbook of Roses.”






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