Just Our Pictures of Roses


Varietal name: AUSfather; Shrub rose; David Austin 1973, Apricot & apricot blend [ab] blooms. Strong, Fruity fragrance. 70 petals. Average diameter 4". Large, cupped bloom form. Blooms in flushes throughout the season.


Charles Darwin is a rose I might easily have chosen just for its name. I have a deep respect for this man who first saw and conceptualized the precepts of genetics. This work is to biology what plate techtonics is to geology, what sub-atomic particle properties are to chemistry, what the Theory of Relativity is to physics. To have a rose honoring this creative and seminal biologist is, for a Biology graduate, an essential act of respect.

I would also have selected the Charles Darwin rose for its name because I love the Darwin Awards which celebrate the result when sheer idiocy leads to the idiot not breeding.

I might also have selected the Charles Darwin rose because it is an Austin and it is yellow. So call me shallow. But the Austins quite often do well in my climate, and I like yellow.

Charles Darwin has been in the ground five years. This own-root plant has been slow to establish and I still cannot guess its mature size here. My plant is currently 3 1/2 feet tall and about 4 feet wide, and still building in size.

The blooms are fairly large, cupped and full of petals. In the Nevada sun they are a creamy yellow with lighter guard petals. In cooler, more damp climates the blooms are larger and more deeply colored. I see this same clear effect of climate with other Austins - Golden Celebration and Heritage, for example. In my garden, Charles Darwin produces somewhat scattered bloom, but the plant always has at least some color.

I have been slow to grow to love this rose as it has been so slow to grow, but it is for me now a most likable plant, and Charles Darwin has finally earned its place in my garden, for more than his name. ~ Christine 2010