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Garden Guru: The truth about black roses

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Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Garden Guru Emilio "Elmo" Telles

Photo: FLLewis/Media City G -- Garden Guru Emilio "Elmo" Telles

 “What is a black rose like the ones they have in the florists that I can grow”?

Well those “black” and also the “blue” roses are only found in those 1960 Hercules movies and the “NCIS” TV series! Those rose colours(and other florist colours) are dyed by fresh cutting the stems and putting them immediately in the colored water to slowly absorb the color to the “tight” budding blooms.

There are two popular roses that the gardener can grow in their garden that can give them a reasonable facsimile.

Black Baccara rose

Black Baccara rose

Black Baccara and Ink Spots are two extremely dark red roses that bud out to almost black and last in color until they open up to a nice velvety red.

There are also the blue roses, Blue Girl and Blue Nile, which are “lavernder-ish” roses with a blue-cast colour in bud form. Another one that I’ve found that customers really want is a “real” yellow rose as opposed to a rose with a  “golden” colour. What I have discovered is that yellow roses tend to fade to a bland yellow in the summer heat. Although, all roses will be more colorful during the spring to early summer months, which is fine because that is when you want to do your “summer haircut” (pruning) to your roses anyway. We’ll talk about that in about three months.

Any questions, feel free to post here. Now that I’m not working two jobs, I’ll have time to post answers and more articles!


Emilio “Elmo” Telles is a garden expert at Armstrong Garden Center  5816 San Fernando Road, Glendale  91202.

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