The Pilgrim

The Pilgrim roseDavid Austin did the rose world a great service, with his introduction of the “English Rose” varieties. The Pilgrim is one of his best, in my opinion. English roses are really something special – here in Timaru, New Zealand, we are fortunate enough to have a rose garden full of his roses…if you would like to see photos and read more about the Trevor Griffiths rose garden then click here.

In common with some of the earlier varieties of English roses, the Pilgrim is perhaps a little sparse with repeat blooming and while it is reasonably disease resistant it can suffer from a little mildew in damp conditions. But don’t let that put you off growing it… for all it’s faults it is still a wonderful rose. I would say this makes an ideal pillar rose, and already have a spot picked out for it in our garden, to plant this winter.

The Pilgrim is great as a climber, and can get up to 12 feet under ideal conditions. The fragrance is officially described as “tea rose and myrrh”. We all have different perceptions of scent, and I would describe it as “spicey and full”. 

The David Austin website describes The Pilgrim like this…

An excellent pure yellow rose, that combines unusually strong and healthy growth with blooms of the utmost delicacy and charm. These are quite large and evenly shaped, with many small petals opening to form a flat flower. They have a softness of texture which is most pleasing, and look particularly fine when arranged in a bowl. Its fine fragrance is a perfect balance between a classic Tea scent and the English Rose, myrrh fragrance.

  • Class: HEnglish, shrub
  • Origin: David Austin, pre 1991
  • Habit: Shrub, Climbing
  • Blooms: Large, double, cup shaped. Fragrant, blooms in flushes
  • Parentage: Graham Thomas x Yellow Button