Black Rose Plant – Aeonium arboreum ‘Zwartkop’: Grow This Succulent in a Xeriscape Garden

The black rose plant, while beautiful in its own right, isn’t actually a rose at all – but rather a succulent, evergreen perennial.

As a native of the Canary Islands, the Black Rose plant (A.arboretum ‘Zwartkop’) prefers an area that receives full sun and well-drained soil. This showy succulent needs a moderate amount of water while becoming established and prefers soil slightly on the acidic side ; 6.1 – 6.8.

This plant is an active winter grower, but if you live in an area that sees temperatures that fall below 50 F degrees, it may be best to grow it indoors, in a green house or in a container, so it can be placed under shelter during the cold months.

Black Rose Plant Stats

Black Rose Plant Stats

  • Category: Succulent
  • Family: Crassulaceae (Stonecrops)
  • Origin: Canary Islands (Atlantic Ocean)
  • Evergreen: Yes
  • Flower Color: Yellow
  • Blooms: Summer
  • Height: 3-4 feet
  • Width: 1-2 feet
  • Exposure: Cool Sun/Light Shade
  • Drought Tolerant: Yes
  • Deer Tolerant: Yes
  • Irrigation: Low Water Needs
  • Winter Hardiness: 25-30° F

Black Rose Growing Habits

Zwartkop’s leaves are born in a rosette-pattern and are so dark, that the plant resembles a blooming rose. The leaves may have a chocolate, burgundy to a burgundy-black coloring.

Black rose is low-maintenance and requires no special care. It does well in borders, rock gardens, flower beds and makes an idea container plant. It’s definitely a plant that holds all-season interest.

The black rose plant grows in a clump-type pattern up to 3’ wide and 3’ tall and form 6’-8” wide rosettes at the end of a single stalk. It takes a couple of years for a flower stalk to grow, but when it does, it blooms in the late spring to early summer.

The flowers bloom in bright yellow clusters and the branches that end up blooming die after the blossoms disappear.

These plants get leggy over time, so to encourage new and more compact growth, cut back branches at several inches below the leaf rosettes. The black rose is darkest when it’s semi-dormant which is in the summer and beginning of fall.

Propagating the Black Rose Plant

To propagate the black rose, take some cuttings from the plant in the early summer. Let the cuttings dry out for a few days and then plant them in a cacti potting mix (sandy).

Keep the newly planted cuttings damp until you see new growth. After that, grow them the same as you would the parent plant.

The black rose is decorative and deer-tolerant. They’re also perfect as container plants or in a xeriscape garden as they are drought-tolerant. The richly dark leaves make excellent contrast to not only their own yellow flowers, but is quite dramatic when placed against blues or greens in the garden.

Aeonium arboreum ‘Zwartkop’ Pictures

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