William Shakespeare 2000, Austin 2000. Breeding: unknown.
This is one of the most recent of the Austin roses to enter the North American market. In its first year in my collection, it has shown significant merit; a definite improvement over the original Crimson Austin bearing the bard's name. (The original 'William Shakespeare' is still a fine bush when well grown, and absolutely worthy of garden space.)
This is a vigorous shrub, quickly making lush, healthy growth and large panicles of bloom that bloom sequentially over a period of two weeks or more. New growth is quick to appear and it has none of the tendency of the earlier crimson Austins to make huge non-blooming canes that act like climbers. (Known in some circles as the "Jolly Green Giant Syndrome"!) Individual blooms are 4 inches across, or more, and are extremely full-petaled, with a rich perfume that hints of Violets at times.
Finally, in my opinion, a crimson Austin that very nearly deserves the hype that preceeds it.
rating: None assigned.
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