Black Flowers - A Guide to Black Flowers

"I've been 40 years discovering that the queen of all colors was black." -- Pierre-Auguste Renoir
Black Flowers

Black flowers bring a touch of goth wherever they are used, being the most unusual colored flowers. Our black flowers guide gives a glimpse over the types and meanings of black flowers and some advice on how and when to use them in arrangements.

Black, representing the negation of color, is sexy and mysterious on one hand and serious and conventional on the other. Visually, black has a shrinking effect, but adjacent to other colors, it makes them stand out.

Black is the color of death, sadness and grief in the European culture, while it can convey a positive meaning in the Asian countries, like for instance the black kimonos that brides wear in Japan for good luck. Although not encountered in flora, in nature black is the color of the night, deep waters and charcoal.

In feng shui, black is the color of mystery and sophistication, associated to the Water element and to the feminine, passive energy symbolized by Yin. Black adds depth and stability to any space, being used sparingly in furniture and decorations as grounding color.

Black flowers can be tinted or natural, even though the “natural” ones are actually very dark shades of purple, maroon or burgundy. Despite the efforts of hybridization, it has become a clear fact that truly black flowers cannot be obtained in practice.

As black is associated with departure and death, one might consider not offering black flowers, especially black roses, to the loved ones, unless the message they want to transmit is “breaking up” or “farewell”. Black flowers should be reserved to funerals and memorial services as a symbol of mourning.

On the other hand, black is the color of elegance and power. Thus, black flowers such as a black calla lily bouquet can be offered as companion to fine gold jewelry, diamonds or pearls.

Black flowers are seldom used in arrangements or bouquets, due to their eccentricity, and are almost never used alone, as they look dingy and sinister. In unconventional arrangements, black flowers can inspire elegance, bringing about a touch of mystery.

However, interesting combinations can be achieved by sprinkling some black flowers in other colored arrangements or bouquets:

  • Black flowers go well amongst yellow flowers, since bright colors are strongly highlighted when adjacent to black.
  • Dark burgundy and deep purple flowers are also a good match for black flowers.
  • Black flowers work well with bright tones of emerald green, ruby red flowers or sapphire blue flowers.

Black flowers may seem an unusual choice for weddings, especially if they are used as a central theme. Although rare, one might consider a whole-black gothic wedding with all black flowers.

Although a bit peculiar, a black flower wedding truly makes a statement. The natural black flowers to consider for wedding arrangements, center table pieces and bridal bouquets are: black Asiatic lilies, “Black Magic” roses, black orchids and black calla lilies. One could also consider using artificially tinted flowers such as black tinted roses.

In order to break the all black color, one should use dark red flowers or deep purple flowers.

The most popular flower types which have black flower varieties are:

  • Black Lily

    Aside the Tiger Lily, which can also be considered a black flower, the most popular varieties of black lilies are: “Black Spider” Asiatic lily in black&white, black-red “Black Beauty” lily variety and “Black Jack” lily.

  • Black Calla Lilies

    Carrying shades of black-burgundy, eggplant or dark maroon, black calla lilies are one of the “blackest" species of black flowers. Popular varieties of black calla lilies include: “Black Forrest”, “Black Star”, “Black Pearl” or “Naomi Campbell”.

  • Black Orchid

    Black orchids vary in color from dark burgundy, to maroon and deep purple, comprising hundreds of species, although they are the rarest varieties of orchids. These black flowers suggest elegance and sophistication, usually having a discrete and soft scent.

  • Black Rose

    Although true black roses do not exist in nature, some of the darkest shades of burgundy roses or midnight purple roses appear to the eye as being black. This black flower is a token of tragic love and death, but it also represents devotion and strength, conveying a message of “farewell”.

  • Black Tulip

    The black tulip has been a challenge to hybridizers everywhere since the eponymous novel by Alexandre Dumas made a sensation in the 1850s. Although the black pigment cannot be naturally synthesized in plants, some of these tulips can be considered black flowers: the “Queen of Night”, “Black Hero”, “Black Diamond” and “Black Parrot”.

  • Black Carnation

    Black carnations were obtained by Australian scientists when mixing blue with dark red carnations. The variety obtained was called “Moonshadow”. This type of black flower conveys mourning and death.