11 Gorgeous Black Flowers to Add to Your Garden

These dark varieties add mystique to any garden.

Close-Up Of violet Tulip Flower

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Black flowers add intrigue to any arrangement or garden.

While no flowers in nature can be completely black, careful selective breeding can create a hue that's a dead-ringer for black (usually a deep purple). These darkly colored blooms are visually stunning and utterly unique.

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'Queen of the Night' Tulip

Tulip, dark purple

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Tulips, a recognizable flower, are round and tall in shape, with large, inward-facing petals that are usually grown in light hues. Queen of the night tulips are a unique variety, quite unlike anything in a typical Easter bouquet. They can be mistaken as black from afar, but are actually a dark maroon purple. True black tulips do not exist, as referenced in "The Black Tulip," a book written by Alexandre Dumas, where the plot involves the search for a purely black tulip.

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Black Dahlia

black dahlias

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The black dahlia is a very full flower with many petals ascending in size, and despite its name is actually a very dark red. Embodying the essence of mystery, this flower also made its way into the public consciousness as a reference to Elizabeth Short—and you may be more familiar with the 2006 film about the famously named murder victim from the 1940s than with the flower itself.

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Black Hellebore

(Photo: hailstone/Flickr)

Hellebores, which are typically white or pink, also come in a deep purple variety which can appear black. While beautiful with few dainty petals and a yellow center, black hellebores are actually a poisonous plant and can even be deadly, adding to the intrigue of this peculiar plant. Keep your pets away, too.

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Purple Calla Lily

Purple Calla Lilies
(Photo: marionhassold/Shutterstock)

Calla lilies are named after the Greek word for beautiful, calla. They are most commonly seen in white but come in an array of colors, with dark purple, being the rarest. Cupular and gothic, purple calla lilies are popular flowers for bouquets, as they can make a dramatic statement.

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Bat Orchid

Bat Orchid

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While it may resemble an orchid, the bat orchid is not technically an orchid but rather considered to be in the family Dioscoreaceae. It is native to tropical Southeast Asian regions. Named for resembling a black bat in flight, the color is actually closer to a dark brown. It's considered a collector's item and is difficult to find in nurseries, though it's sometimes easier to find around Halloween.

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Black Pansy

Black Pansy
(Photo: Anna Bogush/Shutterstock)

Your regular, garden-variety pansy also comes in a deep purple variety that appears black, though it's rare. It's a cold-hardy variety that can grow almost anywhere in the U.S. Some stylists recommend pairing them with all-white pansies for a black-and-white photo effect, minus the filter. These blooms are gaining popularity in gothic-style gardens.

Keep an eye out next time you see a bed of flowers, or check out Georgia O'Keeffe's famous painting of one!

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Black Velvet Petunia

Purple Petunia
(Photo: GeNik/Shutterstock)

In 2010, horticulturists perfected a formula for a natural flower that is as close as possible to black, naming it the "Black Velvet" petunia. Although not pure black, this silky dark purple creation excited plant breeders everywhere for its close match to a night sky. The push to develop such varieties reflects a craze for them in Victorian and Edwardian times, when everyone wanted black blooms in their gardens.

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'Black Widow' Cranesbill Geranium

Cranesbill Geraniums

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A strange little bloom, Geranium phaeum goes by a few different names: dusky cranesbill, mourning widow, and black widow. So it makes sense that this flower grows well in damp, shady areas and woodland-style gardens. You must cut back the plants after blooming to encourage new growth.

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Chocolate Cosmos

Chocolate Cosmos

(Photo: flowermedia / Shutterstock)

Native to Mexico, chocolate cosmos are a gorgeous maroon bloom with long curved petals and a protruding center. Not only does this bloom share a hue with chocolate, but its delicious smell resembles it, too! This scent attracts valuable pollinators. These cosmos can be grown in containers and along borders.

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Black Hollyhock

Black Hollyhock

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Sporting the impressive name of "black magic" hollyhock, this variety of plants is a velvety bluish-purple, making for a unique deep hue. Hollyhocks have been mentioned in historical accounts dating back to the 17th century, giving them even more significance. They are tall spiky plants with large showy blooms that add flair to any setting.

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Chocolate Lily

Chocolate Lilies
(Photo: C. Rene Ammundsen/Shutterstock)

Unlike chocolate cosmos, chocolate lilies emit a rather unpleasant smell that attracts flies to pollinate them. Bell-shaped and droopy, this gloomy bloom is fascinating for its widespread whereabouts but rare sightings. It grows along the Pacific coast of the northwest U.S., British Columbia, Yukon, and into Alaska. The blooms are showy and attractive in a garden and easily transplanted.

View Article Sources
  1. "Bat flower," University of Florida: Gardening Solutions.

  2. "About the Black Devil Pansy." SFGate.