October 13, 2010
'Munstead Wood' English Rose
Last spring I planted the new David Austin english rose, Munstead Wood, in my backyard garden. I happily looked forward to chocolate-crimson colored flowers.
You can see in the first photo that I did get a few deeply colored roses. But then the flowers lightened up to the same color as 'William Shakespeare 2000', another crimson english rose that I have planted nearby. Above is a photo of the lighter Munstead Wood blooms with a double campanula in the background.
The color remained lighter during the summer months, then darkened again as fall approached. None of the flowers on my bush were quite as dark as the photos in the David Austin catalog. But they were still pretty.
As the catalog says, there is a nice 'old rose' fragrance, though it isn't as strong as Shakespeare's. And the size is very manageable, at 3 ft high and 2.5 ft wide.
Even in its first year of growth, and despite being planted in partial shade (morning sun only), the shrub put out regular flushes of blooms throughout the season. It didn't have problems with disease, though of course a few aphids found their way to the new growth.
If you are thinking about adding this rose to your garden, I'd recommend it. Just don't expect all the flowers to be as dark as the pictures in the catalog - especially if you live in a climate with very hot summers.
Regardless of the color, isn't that a gorgeous flower? I just love these english roses!