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The Mystery of the Black Tulip


The Mystery of the Black TulipThere is a sense of unspoken drama and an enigmatic quality when one gazes into a bouquet of black tulips. These unusual flowers evoke a certain strength and power in their symbolism. The air of mystery that they bring to a room is palpable. This may be why bouquets of black tulips are often farewell or good bye to those we care about.

The black tulip, also called “Queen of the Night”, “Ebony Queen”, “Black Hero “and “The Black Parrot” is s not authentically black in color at all! It is a hybrid flower developed by 'weaving' together various tulip bulbs into a new hybrid form.

After centuries of trying to create the actual color black, it still eludes hybridizers. The closest they have gotten too black is a very deep velvety purple or varying shades of dark maroon which often resembles black in a dim light. Black tulip bulbs are highly desired by hybridizers and admired by gardeners. Their elegance and magnificence appeases the minds eye. Hybridizers have sought after the (color) black tulip for centuries. From the beginning Dutchmen tried to use their knowledge and skills of bulbs to improve on nature.

We suspect they haven’t yet completely given up so there’s still hope. The black tulips are a late blooming spring flower and are enjoyed by many gardeners because they are easy to grow. They need full or partial sun exposure and the soil should be sandy, very rich and well drained so as not to be too wet. There are two methods for planting either the tulip bulbs or seeds. They are part of the Liliaceae family and are among one of the ten most popular in the USA.

Even though they are hybrids flowers they require no extra care. Attend to them on regular basis and they will grow fine. 'Queens of the Night' are surprisingly not that rare, and can be bought anywhere that growers sell planets, bulbs and flowers.

'The Black Tulip' is also the name of a famous novel by Alexandre Dumas, the French historical novelist best known for 'The Three Musketeers'. Set in Holland, it tells the story of the de Witt brothers and their dramatic death at the hands of their fellow countrymen. It can be said that the mystery of the black tulip is truly in the eye of the beholder.

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