Chelsea Flower Show Press Day 2011

Here are some highlights from our launch of the 'Queen Anne' rose during Press Day at the 2011 Chelsea Flower Show. We also launched four other new garden roses: 'Fighting Temeraire', 'William and Catherine', 'Lady Salisbury' and 'Wollerton Old Hall'.

Above (left) Zandra Rhodes; (centre) A photographer snaps Stephen Jones as our model admires 'Queen Anne'; (right) David Austin senior
Right: Stephen Jones makes a few last minute adjustments.

Below (left to right) Our models wear dresses by Vivienne Westwood and hats by Stephen Jones, created for the tercentenary of Ascot, to celebrate the launch of our new rose. The models are holding posies of our most recent cut roses, (l to r) 'Keira', 'Kate' and 'Patience'.

Chelsea Flower Show Press Day 2010

We were delighted that the efforts of our team were recognised by the award of our 15th gold medal for our display at the 2010 Chelsea Flower Show.

Above left: Ann Saxby makes the final finishing touches to the roses

Above centre: The garden design was based around a canal in homage to the Renaissance Garden back home in Albrighton

Above right: Michael Marriott shares ideas with our visitor

Left: David Austin senior sits back and enjoys the show.

Below left: We traditionally incorporate sculpture by the late Mrs Pat Austin into every David Austin Chelsea garden.

Below centre: Our good friends Neely and Ian of Sapphires Model Management provided Robin Hood and Maid Marion to help celebrate our new rose.

Below right: We hold our breaths as the judges deliberate.

Click here to see our new varieties for 2010-11

Press Day 2009
We have been casting a nostalgic look back forty years to 1969 when the first of David Austin’s repeat-flowering English Roses was released.

So, for this year’s Chelsea Show, we decided we’d like to celebrate with a 40th birthday cake for the English Roses and invited Purita Hyam to provide one of her magnificent chocolate creations.

We were delighted when Bill Nighy very kindly agreed to cut the cake and this gave us the idea for our latest competition.

Simply write and tell us what you imagine Bill is thinking as he prepares to cut the cake.

Click here for more information and for details of how to enter
We asked our floral designers to fill some garden trugs that we found hidden away in our Plant Centre with our cut roses.

On the left, they have combined two of our most fragrant cut rose varieties, Rosalind and Emily, with some trailing jasmine. The trugs attracted a great deal of attention on Press Day.

If you are planning to celebrate a wedding soon, you may like to know that we have recently created a Bridal Style guide to provide inspiration for couples planning to use our roses.

To request a free copy, e-mail or call 01902 376301.

Jasper Conran, Moira Gavin of Waterford-Wedgwood and David Austin are shown admiring a posy of flowers cut from 'The Wedgwood Rose', our glorious new rose which was released at the show.

We have launched this rose to commemorate Wedgwood's 250th anniversary this year. It has large, delicate pink flowers and glossy, healthy green foliage. It is superb when trained as a climber on a warm wall, where the nodding blooms can be admired from below.

Josiah Wedgwood, the ‘Father of English Potters’, founded the company in 1759. He was interested in horticulture and had the idea that led to the founding of the Royal Horticultural Society.
On the left, David Austin proudly displays a garden trug filled with Juliet and Patience.

In the background is our Chelsea Flower display, with climbing roses, shrub roses and groups of standard roses. Roses for the show are forced under artificial conditions to make them flower earlier than would be natural in the garden.

Regular visitors to our Plant Centre will know that we maintain the National Collection of English Roses in two acres of gardens alongside our Albrighton nursery. Our gardens are open to the public free of charge all year round and have their own individual themes.

Our Chelsea design for 2009 was inspired by the Renaissance Garden at the nursery, where double borders filled with roses are planted on either side of a central canal.
Previously at the Chelsea Flower Show
We were honoured to be able to name a rose for Princess Alexandra of Kent, who is well-known for her love of roses. The official launch of the English Rose named for her took place during the royal visit to Chelsea.

On the inset picture, Princess Alexandra of Kent is shown holding a garden-style bouquet featuring her namesake rose.

We are grateful to Troika for permission to use their picture of Princess Alexandra of Kent and to Claire Cowling for the lovely hand-held bouquet.
Each year at Chelsea we get a chance to meet some wonderful people during the Press Day launches, including celebrities, horticulturalists and gardeners of all ages and levels of experience.

This picture shows David Austin enjoying a glass of champagne with Joanna Lumley OBE. Our Chelsea Flower Show display is shown in the background.

In the picture below we can see part of the BBC TV crew setting up to film David and Alan Titchmarsh on the stand, discussing the roses.
During flming, the stand has to be briefly roped off to make sure that it is clear of visitors.

In the centre of the picture is Michael Marriott with Tony Slack, who have worked with David Austin Roses for twenty-two years and twelve years repectively.

The white rambler on the arch above them is Bobbie James. This has a lovely fragrance and can grow to 30ft or nmore.

More about rosa Bobbie James
This year, David Austin decided to name an outstanding new rose for his daughter, Claire Austin.

Claire is well-known as a plantswoman and author herself. She runs her own nursery which sells a wide selection of perennials by mail order. Last year she published a book named Irises: 'A Gardener's Encyclopedia' which won an award for the best gardening book of the year.

Here Claire Austin can be seen holding a beautiful garden bouquet created by Claire Cowling of Thrive Floristry. It features blooms cut from her namesake rose.

Rosa Claire Austin has a delightful strong fragrance which is based on myrrh with hints of meadowsweet and heliotrope and a warm, vanilla background.

The apricot coloured rose in the background is Port Sunlight, which has a rich tea rose scent.

More about rosa Claire Austin
More about rosa Port Sunlight
Here Floella Benjamin OBE can be seen with our gorgeous pink new variety named for Princess Alexandra of Kent.

Forcing roses for Chelsea can be very challenging and we always find that some of our new varieties respond better to this slightly artificial process than others. We were delighted that our new rose Princess Alexandra of Kent responded quite magnificently, producing many strong stems with massive flower heads.

More information about rosa Princess Alexandra of Kent
Often English Roses are featured on other gardens at Chelsea. One example was Anthea Guthrie's Courtyard Garden with its many white Winchester Cathedral roses. Anthea's design celebrates the court of Henrietta Maria and Charles the first. White quartered English Roses and white lilies are the only flowers used.

Our picture shows a model dressed as Queen Henrietta holding a colourful mixed bouquet created using English Garden Roses.

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22 May 2015