suebelle_neworleans

K and M roses/David Austin roses

  • I have just been informed by a direct source that David Austin roses has told K and M roses that they are not allowing small businesses (Including K and M and Cool roses and others) to sell Austin roses anymore. What a greedy company. I am appalled!

Comments (35)

  • sharon2079
    16 days ago

    Especially since David Austin does NOT graft on Fortuniana.

  • sultry_jasmine_nights (Florida 9a)
    16 days ago
    last modified: 16 days ago

    What the heck?

    Can they sell them if they are off patent?

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  • K S 8b Seattle
    16 days ago

    What the heck indeed! This changes my opinion of David Austin.

  • Mischievous Magpie
    16 days ago

    Is there any more info on this or proof?

  • suebelle_neworleans
    Original Author
    16 days ago

    I can only tell you that I have read the entire letter from David Austin sent to the small businesses. They have decided to not give liscenses to any small business anymore. . I promise you it is true. Cannot reveal my source, but it is official.



  • suebelle_neworleans
    Original Author
    16 days ago

    Just saw this on Facebook: From a grower, not from me.


    After being a licensed grower of David Austin roses for a n of years and promoting their roses that we grow on fortuniana rootstock, ealways paying my royalties on time and always giving them the benefits of doubt, I was informed today that they will no longer let me grow their roses, they are no longer letting small growers have licenses to grow their roses. It is just one more nail in the coffin of a small independent grower. I am extremely angry and shocked. I was always taught take care of the small person and you will be taken care of.

  • Vaporvac Z6-OhioRiverValley
    16 days ago

    Gee. I was hoping this was just some misunderstanding with DA not distributing roses to any independent growers this year due to Covid. I wonder if its related.

  • Dave6aMO
    16 days ago

    That’s absurd - they are shooting themselves in the foot! Well, at least now that can’t dictate what off patent varieties these small growers can and cannot propagate and sell (Evelyn, etc).

  • BenT (8a Dallas, TX)
    16 days ago

    Disappointing, but not surprising. David Austin has long been heavy handed in protecting their profits, for example by forbidding use of trademark names long after the patent expired. I would think these growers can still sell the patent-expired Austins (eg Ausaucer) , just not named as their trademarked name (Evelyn).

  • suebelle_neworleans
    Original Author
    16 days ago

    Hope you are right about the trademark names, but the impression I got was not hopeful.

  • Ken Wilkinson
    16 days ago

    David Austin Inc can't do a thing about any of their roses that are no longer protected by a U.S. Patent. Soon our small nurseries will be flooded with out of Patent bud wood. I guess DA Inc thinks people buy their rose's, grow it for 2 to 3 years, dig them up and order their new intro's. I expect to see DA Inc to flood the market with a HUGE sale propaganda next year trying to cover the squat face move they just pulled off today. This has left a VERY bitter taste in my mouth that I won't forget.

  • Bp37 Zone 10 South Florida
    15 days ago
    last modified: 15 days ago

    I see this is a good thing, i prefer the discontinued/out of patent varities to the newer ones (like st.cecilia or the prince) . So at least now the nurseries can propagate whatever they want as long as it's out of patent. Hopefully this'll keep those old varieties alive.

  • suebelle_neworleans
    Original Author
    15 days ago

    Just read on the Antique rose forum that they also notified ROSES UNLIMITED that they are removing their liscense also. I guess they want to be the only one to sell their roses. So unfair to the little guy who has so much invested. I am guessing that Heirloom roses got a notification also.


  • flowersaremusic z5 Eastern WA
    15 days ago

    The Rosarium had to order a much smaller supply of new Austins from another wholesaler at inflated prices ($59 retail) and Northland will not have Austins this year.

    Update - All Austins have been pulled from the Rosarium's online catalog. I don't know what wholesaler they planned to use, but what becomes of all those plants? Will they just trash them?

    I prefer Austins because they grow exceptionally well in this climate. Meilland roses do pretty well, but Kordes are a gamble. I agree that the older Austin varieties are just as desirable as the new offerings, and buying those propagated by smaller growers will benefit the smaller nurseries.

    Such a pity that greed will be associated with the Austin brand.

    I'm surprised they still have not released a rose in memory of David Austin.

  • BenT (8a Dallas, TX)
    15 days ago
    last modified: 14 days ago

    Flowers hit on one of my main concerns for the nurseries...they’ve been raising and building Austin inventory for some time, that product is in the pipeline for sale at least this year and next. Seems they should be at least given a grace period to sell what they’ve raised while under license.

    I’m glad Austins mostly suck in my climate, so I won’t have the dilemma of wanting their stuff while abhorring their greed. (Austin even helped sponsor this huge public garden in my area where most of theit roses grow embarrassingly bad).

    Here’s Mill on the Floss growing in Austin trial grounds near Dallas during peak spring flush:



    Nope, I don’t need this big thorny new weed. I'll stick with Aussaucer and Auscot ;-)

  • Buford_NE_GA_7A
    14 days ago

    Well this sucks. I love my Austins from K&M, but once they are out of commerce, these small growers can do what they like. Maybe I can get another Prince on Fortuniana now.


  • sharon2079
    14 days ago

    So what happens to all of the roses that these small nurseries have either rooted or grafted.... is David Austin purchasing them back or do they expect the small nurseries to through them away... are they allowing these nurseries to sell their current inventory.... This REALLY ticks me off.... I can understand if they want to keep future sells to themselves... though I think that is a bad business decision.... but I think it is TOTALLY wrong to hurt the companies that have supported them for years.... I have my own computer company. I was a reseller for a large computer manufacturer that did not sell direct (this was years ago). I had a large county order .... I went to the manufacturer about what they could do in delivery terms.... I did the leg work... set up the demos.... and then the company sold them directly ... Pissed me off.... I never sold another computer of that brand again.... at the end of the year the company wanted to know why I was making sales... I said Oh I am making sell.s. In fact I doubled my sells but I am using your competitors brand.,,,


    I hope these nurseries can find DA english replacements that are just as fragrant.... Good luck to the nurseries.

  • pink rose(9b, FL )
    14 days ago

    Good thing David Austin roses don't grow well for me in central FL . I have s/p a lot !

    I only have 2 left which are thriving : Sharifa Asma & Munstead Woods .


  • spatialthinking
    14 days ago

    Does anyone know if already paid for orders will be fulfilled this year?

    I ordered 5 Austins from Roses Unlimited because they offer own root stock. At least two of those are recent introductions, The Ancient Mariner and Roald Dahl. I can’t get the Ancient Mariner as an own root from DA, so I’d be stuck with their grated rose, ugh, and I am not a fan of grafted roses for my own garden.

    This is really fairly disappointing, especially since DA US has been pretty much a mess all season because of Covid and now the awful situation in TX.

  • K S 8b Seattle
    14 days ago

    I posted this thread to Facebook and in a comment was informed that Heirloom is still licensed to carry DA. So I guess some growers will keep their licenses.

  • spatialthinking
    14 days ago

    Now that I think about it, I bet this is to compensate for the losses they will have with Brexit. I guess they can no longer ship to Europe? Some people in our FB Rose groups have been looking to source DAs in Europe so I’m sure they’ll be losing quite a lot of money from the loss of the EU market. Guess they’re trying to make it up elsewhere?

  • HU-804110469
    14 days ago

    Probably because of restrictions in UK.

    Brexit causing businesses terrible problems here. Already can’t trade with EU. Get Boris and his cronies out.

  • perfectjazz78
    13 days ago

    They can still grow the out of patent ones (those over 20 years old)


  • erasmus_gw
    13 days ago

    I asked Pat at Roses Unlimited about availability of several Austins and she said they're available and they have a good inventory so I'm sure they can sell the plants they currently have.


  • sharon2079
    13 days ago

    That is good to know eramus_gw.... it would NOT be right for someone to spend the time and money to produce plants only to have someone from keeping them from being sold.... There is a lot that goes into producing the plants and getting them ready for sale.

  • susan9santabarbara
    13 days ago

    DA cannot prevent people from propagating or selling their out-of-patent roses. A plant patent lasts for 20 yers, then anyone can propagate it. I also never understood why people like Palatine had to use the code names for their out-of-patent roses, unless DA has some weird copyright thing on the names, that no other rose breeder has!

  • bayarea_girl_z9ca
    13 days ago
    last modified: 13 days ago

    @susan9santabarbara DA trademarked the names that you normally see. That is the reason PalatineRoses has to use a code name of a rose (ex: AUSlight) instead its common name (ex: Claire Rose). With HMF, matching a rose‘s code name to its common name is a small inconvenience to have access to a hard to find DA rose. Helen

  • Nola z5aWI
    12 days ago

    It could be brexit, it could be that many of their older roses don’t have the disease resistance that they’re working towards in the future and the reviews (The Right Roses) seem to rate DA’s as a bad buy. It could be that they’re coming out with a disease resistant improved Munstead Wood and if the original is off the market a few years before introduction to a new breed people may not compare them. Maybe they want a reputation for disease resistant roses and need to purge to get there. It wasn’t that long ago that I saw a posting on Houzz making fun of DA roses, I’m sure a man who dedicated his time, life and passion to developing the roses we hate to see discontinued surely deserved better.

  • K S 8b Seattle
    12 days ago

    I just cancelled my order with them for this year.

  • erasmus_gw
    12 days ago

    Nola, you make some good points. We don't know all their reasons. I do think highly of their roses and don't see how anyone could dedicate their life to breeding that many beautiful ones if they don't love roses. I also have read things about David Austin the man that I like .

    I am a pro business person. I think they have a right to do what is profitable as long as they're ethical. I think they had the right from the start to never allow anyone else to sell their patented plants. But that is not what they did. They farmed it out, got the licensees , and i do think it's a hardship on the licensees to revoke it.

    I think about a high end clothing designer. A lot of times you can't buy their creations any old place...you have to go to the source. They don't want their stuff mass produced. They have that right. If they farmed it out and got into a contract with manufacturers and then rescinded the contract, that would be another matter.

    People at DA roses that I have had contact with were pleasant and considerate. I do think that breeders aught to be graceful about letting go of the right to propagate unpatented ones because that's how the law works.



  • susan9santabarbara
    12 days ago

    I really liked Erasmus's comments... spot on. They don't need to give permission to propagate their out-of-patent roses, but they should be graceful (to use Erasmus's word) about letting people use the actual name. I don't mean to be cynical, but I'd say follow the money, if you're trying to figure out why they're doing what they're doing. They know their legacy roses have a large fan-base, and they're trying to eradicate them to maximize future income, which is in their best interest bottom line.


    Helen, in the 20+ years I've grown Austins, I never noticed the TM next to each name, so thanks for the info! And yes, I am aware of using the code name to find them. In fact, before Palatine's last offering in January, I looked up every single code name on HMF. At least now I have a hard copy reference for ~60 of them!

  • Vaporvac Z6-OhioRiverValley
    12 days ago

    KS, why did you cancel your order? For what it's worth, not all of their roses are trademarked. And many other roses have trademarks. This is the reason some breeders such as Kordes Etc, will name roses reusing the same name as an old Rose. It is a way to keep the trademark intact without reapplying.

  • Nola z5aWI
    11 days ago

    Vapor - that is very interesting, I didn't know that about reusing the same name.

  • K S 8b Seattle
    11 days ago

    Hi Vaporvac, I cancelled my order because I wanted them to know that this bothers me. I don't begrudge them the right to control and profit from the propagation of their plants, but it strikes me as greedy to cut off these small rose nurseries when this model obviously worked for them in the past. DA knows, I think, that their roses are "gateway roses" and people seek them out. Someone might only find Roses Unlimited because they are looking for a sold-out Austin. Of course when they order the box fits more than one, so maybe they add an old tea rose or some interesting China, or a modern Barni rose to their order at Pat's suggestion and suddenly a savvy rose grower is born. I care too much about the future of rose growing and rose availability in the USA to take this lightly since these small growers are also the ones offering the greatest variety. It is possible that these small growers will be fine (I hope so) but I don't like this. And as much as I'd like to try Gabriel Oak, there are so many other wonderful roses to grow that I'll have no problem thinking of another rose I want (in fact, there are too many for me to grow all of the roses that interest me, so not ordering DA roses is no hardship).

    suebelle_neworleans thanked K S 8b Seattle