Blue and black roses

Claim

Image depicts “Tiffany blue” roses grown from seeds purchased on Etsy.

Rating

Not True

Reporting

On May 5 2019, the Facebook page “Crafty Morning” shared a photograph of and affiliate link to purported “Tiffany Blue” roses (archived here), urging page fans to click through and purchase seeds to grow the stunning flowers:

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The post was captioned “Have you ever seen a Tiffany Blue Rose? 💙” and it was shared more than 20,000 times in under 48 hours. A number of commenters purporting to have experience growing roses disputed the existence of cultivars in that shade, maintaining that growing a truly blue rose is impossible. Others insisted the image was likely digitally altered to attain the vibrant “Tiffany blue” shade.

A reverse image search made one thing clear — the photograph accompanying the image did not appear to have originated with the 2019 Etsy listing. The image shown in the Facebook post appeared online no later than July 2017, and the linked listing was dated May 7 2019. It is unclear if the Facebook post initially linked to an earlier listing, as the photograph for the listing did not match the photograph in the post.

The Etsy page to which Facebook users were directed was shared by the page “NaturesPotionsLtd,” and reviews were mixed. Purchases for blue rose seeds appear to date back to August 2017, but the image used for the listing was definitely misrepresented.

A base image used for the “blue rose” being peddled was first shared in 2008 or earlier, and its original version was a standard pale rose color:

That seller’s use of a doctored image did not bode well for the authenticity of the listing, as presumably a retailer of blue rose seeds could easily grow the real flower. Additionally, the first reverse image search of the Facebook “Tiffany blue roses” image led to a separate Etsy listing shared by a different seller (GabysTropicalOasis): “ROSE OCEAN BREEZE fragrant bed plant garden flower 20, 200 or 2000 seeds.”

Once again, the listing was dated May 7 2019, and three of the most recent reviews posted that week were negative:

Seeds have been germinating for 3 months and not one of them have sprouted. I emailed seller and she/he was extremely rude. Will never do business with again

Disappointed, not a single germination out of the 6 bags of seed I bought, not sure what they are putting on these bags, do not waste your money.

None of the seeds germinated, seems like she has an ongoing problem with this. Wont buy again

A fourth recent review went further into depth about the seller’s purported issues:

a) I’ve never left a negative review on Etsy before

B) never been unable to get seeds to germinate before.

We can talk about the red flags:

Shop hasn’t been around long enough for anyone to actually have seen their seeds develop into blossoming plant.

Shop is using photoshopped flower images from another site which is a known scam.

I knew this before purchasing but because there were enough good reviews, went for it anyway.

Sure the seeds came fast but seeds to what? And why haven’t they sprouted? I read other feedback where the seller blamed the buyers and I’m not having that. Show me real photos of these flowering in your garden, otherwise how are you getting seeds for them? Why are there NO growing instructions included?

As that reviewer noted, the shop did use digitally altered images for its “ROSE OCEAN BREEZE” listing. Although the image appearing on both Facebook and the listing was inconclusive in terms of editing, that page featured two additional images of “blue roses.” One image dated back at least as far as 2014 and was not grown by the seller, and another was as old as 2013 and clearly altered:

Another issue with the listing’s claim was that blue roses are notoriously absent from nature. In 2009, scientists in Japan created a “blue rose,” the first of its kind to not be dyed. However, that newsworthy rose was in fact “silvery purple,” not the saturated aqua seen in the image:

Named “Applause,” the rose is genetically modified to synthesize delphinidin, a pigment found in most blue flowers. The rose was first released in in Tokyo in 2009, after 20 years of research by Suntory, a Japanese company that also distills whisky, and its Australian subsidiary, Florigene (now Suntory Flowers). Today Suntory announced the rose will be for sale at select florists in North America, beginning early November. While the flower might appear more silver-purple than sky-blue, Applause is the nearest to a true blue rose yet.

Arguably the world’s best loved flowers, humans have cultivated roses for more than 5,000 years. Roses can signify love, beauty, politics and war.

Blue roses have a mythic quality because they, until recently, were impossible to grow. Roses appear naturally in many shades of red, pink, yellow and white, but lack the natural ability to produce blue pigments. For centuries, blue roses have conjured unrequited love or the quest for the impossible.

Due to their nonexistence, the concept of blue roses maintains a mystical, folklore-imbued symbolism:

Having been cultivated for more than 5,000 years, as many as 25,000 different species of roses currently exist, although colours are traditionally limited to red, pink, yellow and white.

A blue rose has long been synonymous with the unattainable, from signifying unrequited love in Chinese folklore to its Victorian era connotations of symbolising a quest for the impossible.

Those inspired by the image of a blue rose range from Rudyard Kipling who penned poems about the unnaturally-hued blooms to a string of characters featuring in modern day Japanese “anime” animation.

Blue roses have been available in florists in recent years but until now, they have been created by using various dying techniques to stain the petals of naturally white roses. However, the Suntory roses are believed to be the first genetically-modified blue rose creations.

In 2009, a horticulturist explained the mechanism by which the scientists came closer to a blue rose:

The blue color of the blue rose is provided by the pigment delphinidin, named for being originally isolated from Delphinium. For the delphinidin in the flower to appear blue, the environment inside the plants’ cells must be acidic.

This “acid factor” is what makes blue such a rare find in the plant kingdom. Not only does a plant have to have the gene to make delphinidin in its flower cells, the plant must be able to maintain a level of acidity within the cell to make the pigment appear blue. Few plants can accomplish this.

Roses do not naturally produce delphinidin. Though some estimates say there have been over 25,000 rose varieties bred, they are all some shade of red, white, pink or yellow. Blue roses created by traditional hybridizing techniques are all more a shade of lilac than really blue. Until recently the only way to obtain a true blue rose was to dye or paint a white rose.

Creating a blue rose required the use of genetic engineering. The Japanese company Suntory began its quest for the blue rose in a joint venture with Australian biotechnology company Florigene in 1990. Since roses do not naturally possess the gene for delphinidin, genetic engineers needed to transfer the gene from another plant that had the gene.

So were the 14 years of genetic engineering research a waste? Time will tell, but certainly the genetic engineers have set the stage for a true blue rose to be possible. The engineered roses not only have the delphinidin gene inserted in their genome, they have also been provided the genetic machinery to suppress the red pigments naturally present in roses.

Suppressing the red pigments in the engineered blue roses has not been perfect, that’s why the new engineered roses appear faintly purple. Suntory’s genetic engineers are continuing their research, striving to make the blue roses “clearer” by suppressing the red pigments entirely.

The elusive blue rose’s trail appeared to go cold with the 2009 exhibition of Suntory’s cultivar. One of the two Etsy sellers had apparent reviews for blue rose seeds dating back to 2017. But in October 2018 (again, well after the photographs used in the listings first appeared and also after the reviews were published), the American Chemical Society reported:

Blue roses could be coming soon to a garden near you

For centuries, gardeners have attempted to breed blue roses with no success. But now, thanks to modern biotechnology, the elusive blue rose may finally be attainable. Researchers have found a way to express pigment-producing enzymes from bacteria in the petals of a white rose, tinting the flowers blue. They report their results in ACS Synthetic Biology.

For this purpose , the researchers chose two bacterial enzymes that together can convert L-glutamine, a common constituent of rose petals, into the blue pigment indigoidine. The team engineered a strain of Agrobacterium tumefaciens that contains the two pigment-producing genes, which originate from a different species of bacteria. A. tumefaciens is often used in plant biotechnology because the bacteria readily inserts foreign DNA into plant genomes. When the researchers injected the engineered bacteria into a white rose petal, the bacteria transferred the pigment-producing genes to the rose genome, and a blue color spread from the injection site. Although the color is short-lived and spotty, the team states that the rose produced in this study is the world’s first engineered blue rose. They say that the next step is to engineer roses that produce the two enzymes themselves, without the need for injections.

As of late 2018 (after the images and reviews first appeared), scientists were only marginally closer to creating a non-dyed blue rose. The color attained in research published at the tail end of that year had produced a blue rose with a color that was “short-lived and spotty,” and the image of a blue rose seen in the Facebook post was first shared to the internet in 2017. Although that image appeared to show home-grown blue roses, that feat had not been achieved as of a year after the photograph appeared. No other possibility but editing remained for the image, and the chances that the seeds sold on Etsy would produce roses anything like those seen in the “Tiffany blue” picture are slim to nonexistent.

Nazism

During World War II, a group called the White Rose, led by the siblings Hans and Sophie Scholl, formed to oppose the Nazis, but was dismantled and their members were executed. Because of this, some claim that the Nazis used the white rose as a symbol of a traitor and the black rose as a symbol of all being well (victory over the white rose).

Other Meanings

Black roses are not only a symbol of tragic romance, though. They can also symbolize death, hatred, and farewell. At funerals there may be black roses. Also, if one goes on a long journey and may never come back, they might be given a black rose as a farewell, or parting gift.

Art and literature

Novels

Black roses have been used in many book titles, most often romance novels.

  • Black Rose is a romance novel by prolific author Nora Roberts.
  • Black Rose is a biographical account of Madame C. J. Walker- the first female African American millionaire by author Tananarive Due.
  • Black Rose is a romance novel by Christina Skye.
  • Black Rose is a suspense novel by Holly Poage.
  • The Black Rose is a 1945 historical adventure novel by Thomas B. Costain made into a film in 1950 with Tyrone Power and Orson Welles.
  • Scandal of the Black Rose is a romance novel by Debra Mullins.
  • Harlequin has published a series of historical romances, “Knights of the Black Rose”
  • Black Roses is a horror novel by Christine Morgan, author of many scifi/fantasy novels, as well as various fanfiction.
  • ” A Dozen Black Roses ” is a vampire novel by Nancy A. Collins
  • “Black Roses” is a homoerotic vampire novel by gothic artist Midnight Firemist and her writing partner Devilkat
  • Titus meets a dying young woman named Black Rose in Mervyn Peake’s 1959 novel Titus Alone.
  • ‘Fragrance of Roses’ in “Collected Stories” by Peter Carey is about the symbolism of the black rose
  • Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Atlantean Queen, Apollymia, grows them in her garden in Katoteros

Music

  • “Black Roses” is the title of a song performed by Barrington Levy
  • “Black Roses” is the title of a song by Clear Light.
  • “Carry a Black Rose” is the title of a song by J D Souther
  • “Black Roses” is the title of an album from the Finnish rock band The Rasmus, released on September 26, 2008. The album also contains a song called “Ten Black Roses”.
  • “Black Roses” is the title of a song from Inner Circle of their 1986 album also named Black Roses.
  • “Black Rose” is the title of a song performed by the band Trapt off of their 2008 album Only Through the Pain.
  • “Black Rose Immortal” is the title of a song by Swedish metal band Opeth on their 1996 album Morningrise.
  • “Black Rose” is the title of a song performed by Neo-Soul artist Hil St. Soul from the 2008 album of the same name.
  • “Black Rose” is the title of a song written by the rock band Blindside and the EP album on which the song is recorded.
  • Róisín Dubh, meaning “Little Black Rose”, written in the 16th century, is one of Ireland’s most famous political songs.
  • Black Rose: A Rock Legend is the ninth studio album by Irish band Thin Lizzy, released in 1979.
  • ” Black Rose Dying” by Blessthefall in the album Black Rose Dying
  • “Black Roses” is the title of a song from Trey Songz 2009 “Ready” album
  • “Black Rose” is the title of a 2017 song by Blasterjaxx,featuring Jonathan Mendelsohn on vocals, off of the duo’s EP, XX Files.
  • “Black Rose” is the title of the first track on Eliza Rickman’s 2012 album O, You Sinners.

Science fiction and fantasy

In the Dragonlance saga, the black rose is a symbol of shame or dishonor, especially among the Knights of Solamnia. It is often associated with Lord Soth, also known as the Knight of the Black Rose. Sturm Brightblade, one of the main characters of the Dragonlance epic, was associated with the black rose when his honor was questioned, but was later remembered as one of the greatest knights who ever lived.

Amelia Atwater-Rhodes uses the black rose as a symbol of the vampires in her first few novels:

  • In In the Forests of the Night, Aubrey gives a black rose to Risika before she is changed.
  • In Demon in My View, black roses mark the path to the vampires’ city, New Mayhem.
  • Nikolas’s knife is inlaid with a black rose in wikipedia:Shattered Mirror.
  • In Midnight Predator, black roses are grown on the grounds of Midnight.

Lisa Jane Smith uses the black rose as a symbol for non-humans mostly used by vampires in her Night World series.

In the third season episode of wikipedia:Babylon 5 titled “wikipedia:Passing Through Gethsemane,” there are references to a serial killer known as “The Black Rose Killer” who murdered several women and left a black rose as his calling card. This theme is further used throughout the series, always a sign that someone has placed a hit on the receiver of the rose.

In the television show wikipedia:NCIS_(TV_series), Abby_Sciuto often receives black roses from her coworkers or gives them as gifts. Also, an associate of La Grenouille, an arms dealer named Rose O’Leary, uses the alias Black Rose

Video games

In the game Fable, a black rose is a symbol of wikipedia:love, especially dark love between two villains. For example, Lady Grey, who has a heart of ice, will only fall for you if you deliver one to her. According to the game, “Only someone with a heart as black as its petals could appreciate it.”

In the Elder Scrolls universe, black roses are a symbol of savage beauty and romance, though they represent realised, rather than idealised conceptions of these things. These flowers grow only on the isle of Vvardenfell and the Great House Redoran is especially proud to put them on their family crests and coats-of-arms. Although called black roses, they may range in shade and can be black, though are often ash-grey, with very delicate petals through which light may shine to produce a chillingly beautiful effect. Their symbolism in The Elder Scrolls very closely mirrors that of their actual symbolism in the real-world Goth subculture, as noted above.

In The Legend of Zelda: Majora’s Mask, the most powerful sword in the game, the Great Fairy’s Sword, is decorated with black roses.

In Star Fox Command, Panther from the Star Wolf team flies a ship called the Black Rose.

In Dance Dance Revolution SuperNOVA 2, there is a song called Unreal under the artist name of “Black Rose Garden.” It talks about superstition and the unnatural. The song also includes an animated background video with a dark/gothic color scheme and black rose petals.

In Vampire: the Masquerade the Black Rose is used as the symbol of the vampiric clan The Toreador. It is also incorporated in the symbol of The Daeva, another vampiric clan in Vampire: the Requiem.

In The Sims: Superstar, “obsessed fans” of famous Sims will occasionally leave black roses on their doorsteps. The roses may be used as spell ingredients in the subsequent expansion, The Sims: Makin’ Magic.

In Nightcaster, the main character’s “love interest” (and a key character to the plot) is Madelyn, the Black Rose of Perth, a Joan of Arc like figure who rallies the people to defeat the evil Nightcaster, but ultimately succumbs to his chaotic and corrupting influence, becoming his avatar in the climactic final battle. Her armor and weaponry were decorated in a black rose motif.

In MySims, black roses are available.

Anime

In the anime series Revolutionary Girl Utena, which is heavily concerned with the symbolism of roses, the black rose represents the dark side of a person’s soul. The Black Rose Duelists are the friends of the series’ protagonists who have been turned against them by their ignorance, selfish desires and passions that were carefully amplified by a mastermind psychologist, a student named Souji Mikage.

In the anime series Ranma ½, Kodachi Kuno, sister of Tatewaki Kuno is nicknamed ‘Black Rose’. She is an arrogant, childish, cunning, and occasionally psychotic young girl who often has black rose petals trailing behind her as she leaps.

In the anime series Sailor Moon, Tuxedo Mask uses red roses as a weapon (and white ones when he’s posing as the Moonlight Knight at some point), but while he is under the control of Queen Beryl, one of the series’ villains, his roses turn black.

In the anime/manga series “.Hack”, one of the female characters is named BlackRose. She is a video game avatar (visual representation) of a human girl (Akira Hayami) in the game “The World”.

In the anime series Detective Academy Q a member of Pluto gives Ryuu black roses as symbolizm.

In the anime series Saint Seiya, the gold saint of Pisces, Aphrodite, uses black roses aptly dubbed the “Piranha Roses” to attack and kill his adversaries.

Akiza Izinski of Yu-Gi-Oh! 5Ds is also known as the Black Rose Duelist.

In the anime series “Ouran High School Host Club” the character Nekozawa of the Black Magic Club is often shown with black roses around him, signifying his dark and mysterious ways.

In the anime series “Pandora Hearts”, the organization of Pandora has a large rose garden in the back. The roses are favored mostly by Vincent.

In the anime Dragon Ball Super, Goku Black transforms into a form called “Super Saiyan Rosé” being derived from the French wine’s color, and by also combining Goku Black and Super Saiyan Rosé, you will get the term “black rose”.

See also

  • Black Orchid
  • Black
  1. Tarot Teachings: Death Tarot Card Meanings
  • Black Roses: Magic and Mysticism
This page uses Creative Commons Licensed content from Wikipedia (view authors).

If you’re a fan of the unique and unusual, opt for black flowers in your next arrangement. As flowers are typically known for being bright, wistful and feminine, black flowers are a great take on breaking tradition. Although these flowers are not technically black, deep shades of red and purple are what make up their dark appearance. From black roses to deep, dark orchids, we’ve compiled a list of 10 black flowers to experiment with in your next arrangement. Check out the list below to find your next favorite!

Calla lily (Zantedeschia) – Also called the “Black Star,” this darker version of the commonly-white flower is a deep purple that is almost black to the human eye. Mix this with light greenery to really make this flower pop!

Hellebore (Helleborus) – This very poisonous flower can be found in the earlier months of spring, as that is its prime season. It has very leathery, dark green leaves that surround the face of the flower.

Black magic hollyhock (Alcea rosea) – A form of wild marshmallow, the dark petals of the black magic hollyhock sometimes have a tint of red, which only adds to its beauty. With a light-colored center, this flower is guaranteed to add a touch of glamour to any winter wedding!

Black velvet petunia (Petunia hybrida) – The size of the petunia’s petals are the perfect shape to pair with other flowers. Keep these in a stable environment to ensure the color stays strong.

Bat orchid (Tacca chantrieri) – This flower gets its name from its unique appearance, as it looks like a bat in flight. Use this flower alone as a visually-interesting single stem bouquet!

Black dahlia (Dahlia) – This mysterious, layered flower is a combination of deep red and purple colors. While they bloom in full sun, they should be placed in the shade if you want to preserve their color and height.

Rose (Rosa) – Often darker in the bud stage, these roses bloom into a deep red or purple color that looks black. To make black roses in a centerpiece seem darker, put a few drops of black dye into the water for the flower to absorb.

Viola (Viola) – Appearing in the spring, violas or “Molly Sandersons” complement multi-colored pansies or yellow flowers due to their light colored center. These flowers do well both in and out of containers—perfect for table centerpieces or aisle decor!

Iris (Iris germanica) – This fragrant flower is also known by the name “Before the Storm.” Be sure to incorporate this flower into outdoor events as they thrive in the sunlight!

Tulip (Tulipa) – Also known as the “Queen of the Night,” the black tulip is one of the more popular black flowers due to its ability to pair well with other colored tulips. Be sure to buy tall vases—these flowers grow up to 24 inches tall!

Adding black flowers to a bouquet is a great way to add a fun, non-traditional touch to an arrangement. If you’re new to black flowers, start small by using them as accents and work your way up to a full bouquet of black flowers. While most bouquets that are gifted are bright and lively, black flowers gives off a sense of glamour and mystique that just can’t be achieved with any other color. With several dramatic blooms to choose from, it won’t be too hard to find a new favorite!

Sources: Serenata Flowers | Hunker | Balcony Garden Web

Roses Delivery

What do roses symbolize?

Roses are often considered symbols of love, adoration, and passion. While that’s certainly true of red roses, ProFlowers offers numerous colors to choose from, each symbolizing their own unique message. Some colors with special meanings include:

  • Yellow roses: Yellow roses signify cheer, joy, and excitement, making them perfect for graduations and flowers for mom’s birthday.
  • Orange roses: Orange roses symbolize energy, vitality, friendship, or passion, and are great for friends and lovers alike.
  • Blue roses: Blue roses mean mystery and the unattainable, which is ideal for a complicated romance.
  • White roses: White roses symbolize youth, purity, and rebirth, making them an excellent choice for weddings and new moms.
  • Multicolored roses: Multicolored roses signify cheer, fun, passion, and enjoyment of life — perfect for all occasions!

What is special about roses?

Roses have been a prized flower for millennia. It’s easy to see why: their gorgeous concentric petals that spiral out in a mesmerizing Fibonacci pattern and their delicate perfumed scent that brings thoughts of love and peace are enough to make them a beloved favorite. However, that’s not all. Roses are especially favored due to their evocation of love. When you’re trying to woo someone, show your significant other how important they are to you, or make amends after a fight, a bouquet of a dozen roses is always a sure bet. With so many options to choose from, ProFlowers makes rose delivery easy. Simply pick the color and style of bouquet that you think best fits the occasion, then click to send roses to whoever the lucky recipient is.

How do you care for roses?

Caring for a bouquet of roses is simple if you follow these instructions:

  1. First, cut the stems of your roses to fit the size of your vase. Be sure to cut the stems at a diagonal.
  2. Then, fill your vase with fresh water at about room temperature.
  3. Stir in a packet of flower food.
  4. Place the roses in the water and arrange them to your liking.
  5. Place your vase and bouquet in a spot that gets plenty of indirect sunlight, but doesn’t get too overheated.
  6. Repeat this process every 2 to 3 days to ensure that your roses last as long as possible.

With the right care and attention, your rose bouquet can last up to a week or even a little longer. Plus, with ProFlowers, you can rest assured that you will receive only the freshest, loveliest roses from our local growers around the country.

If you’re looking for an interesting addition to your rose garden, consider ‘Blue Girl’ (find where to buy it at the end of the article). A hybrid tea, it blooms in double flowers that are generally more lavender than blue.

A compact shrub, the Blue Girl grows 2 to 3 feet in height, with a 2-foot spread. If grown in full sun in its USDA hardiness zones (4 to 10), the Blue Girl will bloom in spring and fall.

In a nutshell, here’s how to care for the Blue Girl rose (find details below)

  • Water weekly; more often when it’s hot outside.
  • Fertilize the Blue Girl rose monthly during the growing season.
  • Deadhead the Blue Girl bush to keep it blooming.
  • Prune in winter.
  • Winter protection begins after the first hard frost.

Like all roses, Blue Girl does best when watered weekly and deeply. During hot, dry periods you may need to supply more water. The best way to water the Blue Girl is with drip irrigation or a soaker hose that will supply the water slowly and deeply. Try to keep water off the foliage to avoid fungal disease.

How to fertilize the Blue Girl rose

Fertilize the Blue Girl monthly during the growing season with rose food, according to the rate suggested on the package. I make my own, following an American Rose Society recipe:

  • 1 cup bone meal or superphosphate (0-20-0)
  • 1 cup cottonseed meal
  • 1/2 cup blood meal
  • 1/2 cup fish meal
  • 1/2 cup epsom salts (magnesium sulphate)

The Society recommends that you use the recipe above for the first spring feeding and then you can switch to chemical fertilizers for the subsequent ones.

Water the rose as you normally do before applying the fertilizer and then sprinkle it evenly around the bush, at the at the drip line. Use a rake to lightly scratch the powder into the surface of the soil and then water again. The American Rose Society recommends that if you live in a region with a long growing season, do another application in early September.

Pruning the Blue Girl

Deadhead the Blue Girl rose bush periodically. The leaves on roses grow in clusters, count them and when you find a five leaf cluster, cut just above the cluster, using sharp pruning shears. Check the area around the base of the Blue Girl for suckers (small, immature growth) and break them off the plant or pull from the soil.

Hybrid teas bloom on new wood so if you hope to have an eye-popping bloom next season, the time to prune away the old wood is winter.

Sterilize your pruners by giving them a 5-minute soak in Lysol or other household disinfectant, rinse thoroughly and dry.

There are several schools of thought on how hard to prune the Blue Girl. One group says to cut back the entire bush to 24 inches in height. Another says to take it down to half its current height.

We like Cass Turnbull’s description at PlantAmnesty.org. If you were four years old and someone asked your age, you would show them, right? You’d hold up four fingers. Do that now, except show yourself (meaning that your thumb should be facing you). That is what Turnbull says the perfect hybrid tree should look like when pruned.

“The perfect rose bush would have five or six clear green canes, as thick as a thumb, radiating evenly from the center. Go take a look at the diagram if you need a better explanation.

As you prune, cut away any growth that appears weak or diseased and any branches that cross over one another. Also as you prune, understand that the new branch will grow from the eye below the cut, so ensure that the eye is facing the way you want the branch to grow. Typically, this will be an outward-facing branch, but not always.

Winter protection for the Blue Girl rose

Prepare the rose for winter if you live in a cold region of the country. Stop fertilizing the Blue Girl rose in August and discontinue deadheading in October. Remove all foliage after the first hard frost and prune off all dead and diseased wood.

Rake the planting bed to remove all plant debris so pests and disease organisms won’t use it to overwinter.

Add 5 inches of mulch around the base of the Blue Girl shrub and cover the entire plant with leaves or straw.

In spring, remove any winter-damaged canes.

Add a fresh, 3-inch layer of mulch after spring pruning. Keep it 2 inches away from the wood and spread it out to 3 feet, completely surrounding the base of the Blue Girl bush.

Of course, these are just common sense rose basics. If you’d like to gain more experience, do visit the American Rose Society’s website.

Shop online for the Blue Girl rose at Nature Hills Nursery.

Featured image: HomeinSalemderivative work: Anna reg – CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

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Black & Blue Roses – The Myth Of The Blue Rose Bush And The Black Rose Bush

By Stan V. Griep
American Rose Society Consulting Master Rosarian – Rocky Mountain District

The title of this article sounds like some scoundrel beat the dickens out of some roses! But put down your garden shovels and forks, no need for a call to arms. This is just an article about the black and blue bloom colors of roses. So, do black roses exist? How about do blue roses exist? Let’s find out.

Is There a Such Thing as a Black Rose?

So far there are not any rose bushes on the market that truly have black blooms and could qualify as a black rose. Not that many a rose hybridizer has not tried over the years or is not still trying to come up with one.

When seeking out a black blooming rose bush, look for the names:

  • Black Beauty
  • Black Jade
  • Black Pearl*
  • Blackout

The seemingly black rose names would have one conjure up mental images of a beautiful sultry black rose. *Well except for one that might have ones thoughts wander off to a certain pirate ship (Pirates of the Caribbean).

Anyway, the black rose bush just does not exist yet and perhaps never will. What you will be able to get on the current market are deep dark red blooming roses or deep dark purple blooming roses that may indeed get very close to being a black rose. These near black roses are truly beautiful in the rose bed, too, I might add.

Is There a Such Thing as Blue Roses?

When seeking out a blue blooming rose bush, look for the names:

  • Blue Angel
  • Blue Bayou
  • Blue Dawn
  • Blue Fairy
  • Blue Girl

The blue roses names would have one conjure up mental images of a beautiful rich or sky blue rose.

However, what you will be able to find on the market under such names are light to medium mauve or lavender blooming rose bushes, not true blue rose bushes. Some of these near blue roses will have their bloom color listed as lilac as well, which is misleading since lilac blooms can also be white. I guess since the names are a bit misleading, the color descriptions can be as well.

The rose hybridizers will keep trying to get blue and black rose blooms I am certain. Sometimes this is attempted by mixing in the genes from other flowering plants, as the rose just does not appear to have the gene needed to produce a blue rose bloom. There has been word of a blue rose bush that was created in a hybridizer’s greenhouse; however, it was such a weak little rose bush that it quickly succumbed to disease and died in the greenhouse of its creation.

The black rose bloom is just as elusive as the blue rose; however, it seems that the hybridizers have been able to get far closer to the black rose bloom. For now, the answer to the questions, “Do black roses exist?” and “Do blue roses exist?” is “No, they do not” but this does not mean we cannot enjoy the near colored roses that are currently available.

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