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Wildeve rose. The Right Roses. Rose comments review. English roses. Photo credit: David Austin
'Rose Review' Series Color: Pink David Austin roses Disease resistance: Excellent Fragrance: light Ideal: Pots & Containers Ideal: Shady areas Rose: Shrub rose

Wildeve Rose Review | David Austin 2003

Wildeve rose


Fragrance Strength


Repeat Flowering


Bloom Size




Suitable for containers


Tolerant of shade


Disease resistance


Tolerance of poor soil


Few thorns


Best for cuttings



  • His blooms are large (3.5 - 5'' or 9 - 12.5 cm)
  • 'Excellent' disease resistance


  • Very light fragrance
  • He produces an awkward shrub shape in the first 3 years.
  • Blooms face downward. Hard to see them.
  • Blooms shatter quickly (2 - 3 days)
  • Not very productive



English Shrub Rose bred by David Austin

David Austin

Distinctly quartered, rosette blooms are produced on long arching branches. They are soft blush with a pretty apricot hue, the outer petals paling to almost white. It forms a bushy, mounding shrub. Named after the character in Thomas Hardy’s The Return of the Native. David Austin, 2003.

The Right Roses:

David Austin introduced this rose for the UK in 2003. He named  this rose after the character in The Return of the Native by Thomas Hardy (1840-1928). Thomas Hardy is one of the most renowned novelists. As a result, Thomas Hardy Society is one of the largest literacy societies in the world. The Return of the Native has been made into a movie.

David Austin is a big fan of Thomas Hardy. He has named many roses after the characters in Thomas Hardy’s novels, such as  Eustacia Vye (2019), Gabriel Oak (2019), Bathsheba (2016).

Coming back with our rose, Wildeve. Wildeve is a pretty rose. However, he also has a few relatively unattractive traits.


Wildeve is a pretty rose. However, she also has a few relatively unattractive traits”.

The Right Roses |

Wildeve rose: The pros

Wildeve rose has two main strengths.

First, his blooms are large (3.5 – 5’’ or 9 – 12.5 cm) and very pretty.

Second, Wildeve has an ‘excellent’ disease resistance. According to our experience, he rarely suffers from rust and mildew. When the weather is wet, he may have some black spots. However, nothing is serious. In fact, we are all aware that all kinds of roses could have some degree of black spot. Therefore, in terms of disease resistance, Wildeve is an incredible rose.

Wildeve rose: The cons

Wildeve rose has five main weaknesses.

First, he produces a very light fragrance. David Austin has made an enormous effort in breeding roses with two main elements: utmost elegance and strong fragrance. However, it seems to us that he was only partial successful with Wildeve rose. The blooms of Wildeve rose are indeed incredibly charming. However, unfortunately, he does not do particularly well in terms of fragrance.

David Austin has introduced 12 rose varieties best for fragrance including: Emily Bronte (2018), Harlow Carr, The Generous Gardener, Princess Alexandra of Kent, Gabriel Oak (2019), Gertrude Jekyll, Desdemona, R. Rugosa Alba, Claire Austin, Summer Song, Charles Darwin, The Poet’s Wife. According to our own experience, other David Austin roses are also heavenly scented, although they are not in David Austin’s list, e.g., Lady Emma Hamilton, Munstead Wood, Carolyn Knight. To a certain extent, Crown Princess Margareta also deserves a special mention.

We would like to make an extra comment regarding the strength level of David Austin roses. For some David Austin roses, it may take 2 or 3 years for the roses to live up to their true potential. For example, Princess Alexandra of Kent is extremely fragrant. However, in the first 2 or 3 years in your garden, her blooms have very little fragrance.

If you want some David Austin roses having an instant impact in terms of fragrance, you may want to consider 4 roses: Emily Bronte (2018), Lady Emma Hamilton, Munstead Wood, and Gabriel Oak (2019). They smell wonderful even in their first ever flush. You do not even have to put your nose into the blooms to detect their incredible scent. Just standing close to them is enough. Having 4 of them next to each other would make every morning of yours very delightful. Your garden is filled with their beautiful perfume.

Second, Wildeve produces an awkward shrub shape in the first 3 years. In the early years in your garden, he behaves like a ground cover rose. However, in the long run, he improves with time. From year 4 or 5, his shrub can be more rounded and bushier. Mind you that, his shrub size is 4ft height x 5ft spread. Therefore, you should prepare to give him a lot of room to thrive.

Third, in the first 3 years, he makes it very hard for you to enjoy his blooms. His stems prefer to grow horizontally and low. His blooms just want to face downward. He behaves like another stunning David Austin rose, Jubilee Celebration.

Fourth, his blooms shatter very quickly, at most 2 – 3 days. Therefore, he certainly is not the best one as a cut flower.

Fifth, he is not very productive. Couple with the fact that his blooms just sag downward, he may not be among the best pink David Austin roses.

In summary, Wildeve rose certainly has strengths and weaknesses. No rose is perfect! There are only roses that are perfect for each individual and each garden. Your personal preference and taste matter most. And, Wildeve is still a very good rose for your consideration.

Wildeve rose: The similarities

There two similar David Austin roses which we would also strongly recommend.

First, Queen of Sweden. She produces a 3ft x 3ft upright shrub with a gorgeous shade of light pink. Therefore, she would be a great rose for front of the border. Her perfume is ‘medium’.

Second, Emily Bronte (2018) is an incredible rose. Heavenly and heavenly fragrant. Extremely gorgeous blooms. However, her color can fade in warm climates. Moreover, she makes a 4ft x 3.5 ft shrub.

Wildeve rose: The details

Height & Spread: 4ft x 5ft Color: Light pink Fragrance: Light
Fragrance notes: Fruity Flowering: Repeat Flowering Suitable for containers: Yes
Sun exposure: Partial Sunlight Bloom size: Large (3.5 – 5’’ or 9 – 12.5 cm) Disease resistance: Excellent

Photo credit: The Right Roses | and

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Vicky Box
Vicky Box
7 months ago

Please advice me with this rose, it was bought as a present, the label says shrub but it acts as a climber so I’ve supported it?

Vicky Box
Vicky Box
7 months ago

Thank you

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