My Roses – What Are They?

Last Spring I asked everyone for some help to identify the Clematis in my garden. See the post My Clematis – What Are They? Now, I’m asking for help to identify the Roses in my garden.

A little history. Three years ago I moved from Bath, UK to Portland, Oregon. The garden that I inherited is not so tiny as the last one and the lady that lived here before me was a prolific buyer of Roses. Unfortunately, I only found one name tag on one of the 20-odd Roses (David Austin, Heritage).

I love the Roses in my garden but sadly I know next to nothing of their history or names.

Do you know more than me? Can you help?

I’ll tell you as much as I know of each one. But other than that all I have is the photograph.

Above: One of three large shrubs (that grow to 6 feet high). Lots of individual flowers on floppy spikes holding 3-4 flower heads. Faint Rose scent, thorns.


Above: This medium shrub seems happy to grow in the shade. Looks like some species Rose to me but I have no name for it. The petals seem to stay on a for a long time.


Above: Again a medium sized shrub. Has a traditional Rose perfume, single flowers.


Above: Leggy shrub – I think it could be trained as a climber but it’s planted in the middle of a bed with nothing to climb. No scent to speak of and flowers are held in sprays.


Above: One of the most striking shrubs I have. Very dark red stems are topped with creamy yellow Tea Rose shaped flowers. No scent.


Above: Mediu shrub. Blooms fade quickly.


Above: Pure white climber.


Above: Prolific medium shrub with distinctive clustered flowers. Traditional rose scent.


Above: This is my favourite Rose in the garden. It has a delicate, white-tinged-with-pink, colour to it and it has the most amazing sherbet candy scent ever.


Above: The photo is deceptive as it looks like a normal sized Rose. It’s actually a miniature Rose. The bush is about a foot high.


Above: This is a climber (or could be rambler). The flowers are prolific and small (about an inch across for each one). The petals drop quickly and it is covered in tiny hooked thorns. Very difficult to prune as it clings on to you!



Above: Medium shrub planted in the shade. Seems to do okay but only a few flowers. I should probably move it.


Above: I moved this one out of the shade and into the sun and it has gone crazy! I think it’s a Hybrid Tea. I pruned it hard this February and it responded with large blooms. Faint Rose-like scent. I’m thinking it could be Summer Love.


Above: Shrub with distinctive rounded petals. Lovely in the afternoon sun – shimmers.

Any ideas?

Update: I contacted David Austin roses on Twitter and they sent me this long email in reply. So sweet of them to spend time on this to help me out.

—email from David Austin roses ——-

We’ve had our senior rosarian Michael Marriott look at the photos and he has come back with some possible varieties. We always say we can’t be 100% certain because we often need images of all aspects and at all stages to be clearer. However, we’ve had a good go! Where there are ??  Michael has been unable to identify or narrow the rose down.

In order of the images:





‘Heritage’ probably






‘The Pilgrim’






‘The Generous Gardener’  possibly


?? (need to see it more open)








Perhaps ‘Claire Austin’


23 Comments on “My Roses – What Are They?

    • Yes it does look like Ballerina. Gosh this is the first ID whoohoo!

  1. yes definitely Ballerina, and the pure white climber looks to be Iceberg

    • Yes that definitely looks like Iceberg. The centres are yellow too.

  2. the first one looks like Shropshire Lad, a beautiful David Austin rose with a slightly fruity rose scent

  3. What a shame more tags weren’t left behind! I wouldn’t know how to begin to identify your roses – I was bowled over by the sheer number of roses available in the Rose Marquee at Hampton Court a couple of days ago. I was after a rambling rose for a friend who wants to train one along a swagged rope and found it in the form of Frances E. Lester on the marvellous David Austen exhibit. I was told that climbing roses have strong, straight stems and ramblers have more whippy stems, suitable for training over an arch. Good luck with the identification, hope you’ll let us know any that you id positively!

    • I know! I shall be tagging them all up once I have names for them.

  4. You might want to contact Jackson and Perkins in Oregon. I bought lots of roses from them in the past and possibly your home’s former owner did as well.

  5. Ello! Is the second one maybe a Cistus? x

  6. A lot do look like David Austins. If you go on his UK site and email his Albrightom nursery they will be able to tell you if they are theirs . Good luck! X

    • Great idea. I got in touch with them on Twitter and they said they have an email for me. Exciting. I will post it here when it comes through.

  7. I’d suggest your favourite (white tinged with pink) is Desdemona?

  8. The fourth rose from the bottom, the little pink climber, looks like one of my favorites. i think it is a cecile brunner.

  9. Hi there,

    the one above the white climber looks like David Austin’s Charlotte and the one below the white climber looks like David Austin’s Heritage.
    Good Luck identifying them!