Pictures of Black Flowers

  • 01 of 19

    Black Petunias

    The flower on this petunia (image) is about as black as a flower can be.
    As Truly Black as a Flower Can Be The flower on this petunia is about as black as a flower can be. David Beaulieu

    Grow Black Flowers, Foliage for Contrast, Novelty

    The terminology "black flowers" is used loosely to refer to the darkest blooms available to growers. Similarly, there are plants with dark foliage termed "black," such as black shamrocks.

    If you look closely, you'll usually see that so-called "black flowers" are such a deep purple that they just appear black. I show pictures of such specimens, as well as an example of a plant with dark foliage, in this photo gallery.

    Petun...MOREias come in many colors....


    The one shown in this picture is about as truly "black" as a flower can be, naturally. Petunias are annuals, popular in container gardens and as bedding plants. The one thing I don't like about them is that they look like drowned rats after a rain, necessitating deadheading for aesthetic reasons. 

    Color choices for petunias include white, red, and various shades of pink and purple, such as the ones you'll see in the following photos:

    1. Border With Light Pink and Purple Petunias
    2. Pink Petunia

    Petunia flowers can also be bicolor, as in the commonly found red-and-white striped petunias.

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  • 02 of 19

    Black Tulips

    Photo of black tulips.
    Picture of Tulips With Dark Flowers Photo of "black" tulips. David Beaulieu

    As the picture shows, these "black" tulips are really just a deep purple color....

    Depending on the lighting present when you view these tulips, they can appear either purple or black.

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  • 03 of 19

    Picture of "Black" Iris

    Black iris picture.
    Deep Purple-Colored Iris Flower Black iris picture. David Beaulieu

    The lower part of this "black" iris appears especially black....

    As you can see from the upper part of the flower, this iris is actually deep purple in color, as was the "black" tulip in the prior picture. Besides their striking good looks (in various colors), some iris flowers are aromatic.

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  • 04 of 19

    Purple Fountain Grass Picture

    Photo of purple fountain grass.
    An Ornamental Grass With Dark Foliage Photo of purple fountain grass. David Beaulieu

    Purple fountain grass gives you an option for dark foliage among the ornamental grasses....

    Unfortunately, purple fountain grass must be treated as an annual in cold climates, as it is perennial only in planting zones 9-11.

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  • 05 of 19

    Photo of Black Hollyhocks

    Photo of Black Hollyhocks
    Alcea Nigra: "Black" Hollyhock Flowers Flowers bloom in early summer. David Beaulieu

    Picture of "black" hollyhocks....

    Black hollyhocks (Alcea rosea 'nigra') have blossoms of such a deep purple color that they are regarded as "black."

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  • 06 of 19

    Picture of Butterfly Bush

    Picture of butterfly bush.
    Buddleia Cultivars Such As 'Black Knight' Offer Dark Flowers Flowers bloom in early summer. David Beaulieu

    Picture of a butterfly bush with "black" flowers....

    Some cultivars of butterfly bush, such as Black Night (Buddleia davidii 'Black Knight') can have blooms that are a very dark purple -- almost black, at a quick glance.

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  • 07 of 19

    Picture of Black Elephant Ears

    Photo of black elephant ears.
    Colocasias With Dark Foliage Photo of black elephant ears plant. David Beaulieu

    The large "elephant ears" of Colocasia's foliage offer a tropical look....

    But some varieties of elephant ears provide unusual foliage color, to boot -- practically black!

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  • 08 of 19

    Black Lily

    'Jungle Beauty' is perhaps the closest thing to a black lily.
    'Jungle Beauty' the Black Beauty of the Lilies Flowers bloom in summer. David Beaulieu

    "Black" lily picture....

    'Jungle Beauty' comes close to being a truly black lily.

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  • 09 of 19

    Dark Foliage: Ninebark

    Picture of the dark foliage of ninebark shrubs.
    Diabolo Ninebark Shrubs Bear Dark Leaves Picture of the dark foliage of ninebark shrubs. David Beaulieu

    Some ninebark shrubs have coppery leaves, others have golden foliage....

    But 'Diabolo' ninebark shrubs (the cultivar name is sometimes spelled 'Diablo') bear a strikingly dark foliage.

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  • 10 of 19

    Heuchera Plant With Dark Foliage

    Picture of heuchera plant with dark foliage.
    Forget "Coral Bells": I Value Heuchera's Leaves Picture of heuchera plant with dark foliage. David Beaulieu

    Heuchera plant's common name is "coral bells" (referring to the flowers), ....

    But I find the dark varieties most valuable as foliage plants, not as flowering plants. As you can see from this picture, the new leaves start out a deep red, but they become more of a purplish-black with age. For a full article on Heuchera see my piece on Heuchera 'Blondie'.

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  • 11 of 19

    Picture of "Black" Castor Bean Leaf

    Picture of castor bean with 'black' foliage.
    Beware: Castor Beans Are Poisonous! Picture of castor bean with 'black' foliage. David Beaulieu

    The picture below shows how nicely "black" castor bean leaves contrast with brightly colored flowers....

    Although not truly black, such dark-colored foliage is highly sought after for its novelty. Because castor bean produces seeds that are poisonous, castor bean plants should not be grown in yards where children play.

    According to Karen Platt in Black Magic and Purple Passion (page 193), the following varieties of castor bean plants exhibit dark foliage:

    • Ricinus communis 'Carmencita...MORE9;
    • Ricinus communis 'Gibsonii'
    • Ricinus communis 'Impala'
    • Ricinus communis 'Red Spire'

    For more, see how castor bean plants can be used in organic pest control.

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  • 12 of 19

    Picture of a "Black" Pansy

    Black pansy picture.
    This Pansy Such a Dark Purple It's Practically Black Black pansy picture. David Beaulieu

    Like the iris flower pictured earlier, this "black" pansy is really just a very deep purple....

    I have, however, seen pansies of an even deeper color than the pansy in the photo above.

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  • 13 of 19

    Picture of a "Black" Rose

    Picture: Rosa 'Almost Black' is a deep burgundy color.
    No Real McCoy, but Dark Choices Exist The Almost Black rose is just that, with an emphasis on the first part of the name. It's really a deep red. David Beaulieu

    This picture of a "black" rose shows that dark types do exist. But real flowers do not exist in that color, in the truest sense....

    A way to interpret the meaning of rose colors has been used down through the ages, allowing you to send the correct rose for any given occasion. So-called "black" roses are a somewhat dubious addition to the list.

    But are black roses real or imaginary? If real, does that color come naturally? And what of their significance in the language of flowers?

    Not...MORE everybody agrees on what they stand for. That fact should not surprise us, since the black rose is a creation, not a natural phenomenon (as I explain below). But "death" is, by far, the most common interpretation. For more detail, see What Black Roses Mean.

    Plant developers have been trying to develop a black rose for a long time. No jet-black rose really exists at this time, but there are some so deep in color as to suggest black. The one shown in the picture above, namely, Rosa 'Almost Black,' is an example. To counteract nature's reluctance in this regard, florists resort to artifice: they simply dry the fresh blooms and spray or dye them black.

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  • 14 of 19

    Purple Morning Glory: Almost Black Flowers

    Purple morning glory vine picture.
    Deep Purple Morning Glory Vine Flowers Purple morning glory vine picture. David Beaulieu

    Like the iris pictured earlier in my photo gallery, this morning glory flower is such a deep purple....

    It's almost black!

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  • 15 of 19

    Dark Coleus Photo

    Image of Coleus with dark leaves.
    Coleus an "Annual" That Offers Dark Leaves Image of a type of coleus with dark leaves. David Beaulieu

    I show examples of a number of types of plants with dark foliage in this photo gallery....

    But what about bedding plants? Coleus (Solenostemon scutellarioides) is popular in the North, where it is treated as if it were an annual. In strict botanical terms, though, it is an herbaceous perennial of the tropics, native to southeastern Asia. It is too tender to survive winters outside of planting zones 10-11.

    It is best to plant coleus in a rich, friable soil, generally in shade. Keep the soil evenly...MORE moist. Some people like to pinch out the centers of the plants to keep them more compact.

    Coleus is grown in flower beds to inject blasts of color. Valued for its leaves rather than its flowers, coleus comes in all sorts of colors and color combinations. Some coleus plants display dark foliage, as in the picture above. True to their heritage (Lamiaceae or "mint" family; see yellow archangel as another example), they sport square stems.

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  • 16 of 19

    Dark Foliage of Ajuga

    Photo showing dark foliage of an ajuga plant.
    Example of a Ground Cover With Dark Foliage Photo showing dark foliage of an ajuga plant. David Beaulieu

    Picture showing dark upper foliage of an ajuga plant, while in bloom....

    Even on a common ajuga, a popular ground cover, the foliage up high on the flower stalk is quite dark. But 'Chocolate Chip' ajuga has more uniformly dark foliage than does common ajuga.

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  • 17 of 19

    Edens Magic Giant Bergenia Photo

    Photo of Edens Magic Giant bergenia.
    A Bergenia With Dark Foliage Photo of Edens Magic Giant bergenia. David Beaulieu

    Pig squeak (Bergenia cordifolia) is known as a large-leafed perennial....

    'Edens Magic Giant' Bergenia adds dark color to those impressive leaves. Division in spring will help you to propagate this plant and turn it into an impressive ground cover. The colorful common name derives from the squeak emitted when one rubs the leaf between one's thumb and forefinger. The plant can be grown in dry shade.

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  • 18 of 19

    Picture of Sand Cherry

    Picture of purple leaf sand cherry's dark foliage.
    Shrubs That Provide a Dark Backdrop Purple leaf sand cherry's dark foliage contrasts nicely with brightly colored flowers. David Beaulieu

    The leaves of the cherry tree in the picture below start out reddish-purple, giving the plant the name "purple leaf sand cherry"....

    Its new reddish-purple leaves afford a nice backdrop for this plant's brightly colored spring flowers. As the leaves of purple leaf sand cherry age, they may green up a bit, but the color is dark green to dull purple -- still plenty dark enough to set sand cherry trees apart from most other plants.

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  • 19 of 19

    Shrubs With Dark Foliage: Smokebush

    Smoke bush's foliage is dark enough to serve as a nice backdrop for brightly colored flowers.
    It's Not All About the "Smoke" Picture showing how smokebush's dark foliage can serve as a nice backdrop for brightly colored flowers. David Beaulieu

    Smokebush is named for its puffy blooms....

    But this shrub's dark foliage is also useful in the landscape. Like the purple leaf sand cherry pictured earlier in this photo gallery, it can serve as a nice backdrop for yellow flowers, white flowers or orange flowers.