What is this drop dead gorgeous dark red rose?

tropical_philippinesMarch 2, 2009


Fully open flower:

Flowers in vase:

I have been wanting to I. D. this dark red rose but had no idea on its growth habit. Having successfully grown it from a cut flower seven months ago, I can say the following characteristics of this rose:

- Flowers are dark red or deep red but vivid in color (not dull), with thick petal substance; flowers take about 2 or more days to fully open from a mature bud (longer than many hybrid tea roses); flowers last about a week on the vase. Flowers have a slight sweet, tea like scent (most noticeable in a bouquet).

Color retention is very good (vivid, dark red color lasts for several days). Fully open flower form and bud form is as shown in the photos. Form retention is very good - it retains the fully open form shown in the photos above for several days. This rose holds on to its petals very well for several days; Petals don't easily drop even under daily rains in our climate. (Petal edges do sometimes turn almost black in our hot tropical climate.)

Strong flower stalk - does not bow down; remains firm and upright even with the daily monsoon rains in our climate.

Flower size - about 4" in my 7-month old 'cut flower' propagated plant (it could get bigger); Petal count about 30 in my young plant (it could have more when my plant is bigger).

Stems - very few thorns or none at all at the upper flower stalks/stems. Some small thorns (still few compared to most roses) near the base of the plant .

Flowers are borne on long stems (about 12" or longer for my 7-month old 'cutflower propagated' plant). Only single flowers per stem. The 'bush' seems to behave well - definitely not a rambler or climber type of rose.

Reasonably well behaved grower that remains upright with sturdy canes and strong flower stems that don't spread very wide. (This is as far as I can see from the 7-month old plant.)

Also, I'd like to add that the flower color may look different on your individual computer monitors as few of us ever calibrate our monitors. Anyway, it is not the usual, 'normal' or 'regular' red color. The rose is really 'dark red' under normal lighting conditions. It can get really very deep luscious red in dim indoor lighting conditions. Under bright noon sun, this rose will still look darker than most regular red roses (except the darkest red ones) and it stands out because of the vivid dark red coloration. (Many dark red roses look dull, maroonish/brownish red but this one under noon sun looks very luscious, vivid, saturated, true dark/deep red color [not dark maroon] without any hint of purplish or red-orange hues.

This rose also seems disease resistant. I haven't have blackspot, powdery mildew or rust on this rose though it could be my tropical climate. The rose is repeat blooming.

Any name suggestions will be appreciated.

It is such a frustration for me when all that rose cut flower sellers here could tell me is that it is a dark red 'American' Rose.

In this part of the world, roses have this simple naming system: Rose color + American Rose or Holland Rose or Mini Rose or Local Rose. American roses are the automatic name of hybrid teas with medium to large sized buds and flowers while 'Holland' rose is the automatic name of hybrid teas with large to very large sized buds and flowers. Local rose is the name of the rose when it is endemic to the country while mini rose is the name when the blooms are much smaller than 'American' Rose.

Thanks in advance for your help.


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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Having successfully grown it from a cut flower seven months ago...

Then it is most likely a florist rose, rather than a garden rose. They are bred especially for the cut flower industry, and you'd be better off looking at what hybridizers are currently offering to the cut flower industry to find out what it is.

Some current popular red florist roses include:
Amadeus - Brilliant velvet red, medium head size, med/long stem length

Black Baccara - Very dark shiraz, medium head size, medium/long stem length (yours doesn't look like Black Bacarra)

First Red - Dark red, large head size, medium to long stem length

Grand Gala - Mid to dark red, large head size, long stem length

Magnum - Dark velvet red, large head, short to long stem length

Rouge Baiser, Kardinal, Charlene, Cherry Love, Freedom, Sexy Red are some other red florist roses currently being grown world wide.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2009 at 2:42AM
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Thanks for the suggestions. Will check them out for possible matches. If this rose is not 'Black Baccara', could it be 'Black Beauty' or 'Black Magic' or some other 'black' (dark red) rose?

Thanks again.


    Bookmark   March 3, 2009 at 3:25AM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

If you are not familiar with helpmefind, you can look at the pictures there and compare with your own. To me your pictures just don't look that dark of a red. Of course, color is not always accurate--red is particularly hard for accuracy.

Here is a link that might be useful: help me find black beauty rose, for example

    Bookmark   March 3, 2009 at 5:46PM
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While a few florist roses do cross over and make it as garden roses, most do not. Your best bet is to check with florists as hoovb said.

One further complication is that the same rose variety grown by a florist and by a home gardener can look quite different due to the different sun exposure. Unless you are sure the ones from your garden look exactly like the ones you got from the florist, taking a current bloom to them may not help a great deal.

If you know which florist supplied the original rose, and about when, going back to them to ask will probably give you the best chance of success in learning the identity.

    Bookmark   March 3, 2009 at 10:57PM
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Thanks again hoovb and Phil. I guess the true identity of this lovely rose will escape me.

Unlike in temperate climates, most florist roses sold here are actually field grown. They are planted by local farmers (family-owned farms) in wide and open areas, under significant elevations (mountainous areas) as the microclimate in elevated areas is cooler (still tropical though).

The owners of these small family-owned farms really don't know and don't care about the exact rose names. They choose rose plants which grow well own-root, which survive the local climate and soil, and which yield the highest number of cut flowers. They don't grow on greenhouses so they choose well for the lowest cost. These type of roses are usually sold here at wet markets, in parks and even along frequented church sidewalks by small sidewalk vendors.

Some florist roses are from large commercial greenhouse companies and are easily identified by their very large bud size, very large leaf size and very long, thick stems. These larger roses are generically called 'Holland' Roses here as contrasted to the 'American' Roses from the local farmers which are much smaller.

These so-called 'Holland'/Greenhouse roses are expensive (5 to 10 times more expensive) and so are only sold at specialty flower shops at upscale malls. Even then, upscale flower shops don't know the exact name of the roses other than the generic 'color + Holland rose' pseudo-name. Exact names are only available if you are privy to the company who grows them or know someone who works there and have access to the exact rose names.

How I wish the pictures at helpmefind can help but there is just way too much inconsistency from one photo to the other. Color for one, usually varies a lot due to camera limitations and settings as well as due to the fact that those who post them tend to overprocess their images resulting to exaggerated colors and sheen (probably for that website 'appeal'). This doesn't include the fact that colors can vary under extreme lighting conditions (too dark or too bright an environment when capturing the photo).

Add to this the fact that computer monitors need to be calibrated and most of those who do post photos and postprocess them don't bother to do so as the site isn't a photography website.


    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 11:10PM
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When the flower is fully open, does it look like the one in my picture?


    Bookmark   March 4, 2009 at 11:45PM
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Hi Mark,

It does flatten up a bit like your picture of 'Freedom' rose when it fully opens but not as flat as your rose. Also, my unknown rose has fewer petals than your Freedom rose, about 30 only, and the center opens up a bit more showing the stamens when the flower ages. The dark red color tends to last 3-4 days before it starts to fade to normal medium/regular red (still no hint of orange or purple even when aged.)

Having read descriptions of many dark red roses, their number of petals, form and color longevity, I think my rose seems to match 'Black magic' rose more than any other dark red rose like Black Beauty, Black Baccara or others. I'm just not 100% sure.

Maybe owners of black magic roses here can share bud and flower development photos from bud to fully open to aged flowers. Descriptions would help confirm if this rose is indeed the 'Black magic' rose or something else.

I've been doing internet research for more than a month now but alas, descriptions and flower development photos have been scant to find.

By the way, there is one other characteristic of my rose that is visible in the photo. It tends to have remarkably 'enlarged' sepals which look like small leaves. My other roses don't have this characteristic. Maybe this unusual feature can help others suggest possible dark red rose candidates.

By the way, thanks Mark for the photo. Your Freedom rose certainly is beautiful and is nice to have.


    Bookmark   March 5, 2009 at 4:21AM
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Your description sounds like my Black Magic. The pictures look accurate except on my computer the roses look a lot lighter in color than mine.
Mine always are dark red with thick, velvety petals.
I carried these in my bridal bouquet, and had a bit of trouble finding a bush to plant years ago, but now I see them at lots of online sites.
Mine is on fortuniana rootstock, and doesn't want to grow any basal canes, so I am buying a new one this year.

    Bookmark   March 9, 2009 at 3:12PM
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Hi Kim,

Thanks for the comments. My rose is really deep/dark red in color and it has thick, velvety petals which my camera can't capture well. (My camera struggles with deep, saturated reds.) I'm now more convinced my rose is 'Black Magic'. I hope other owners of 'Black Magic' roses here can post bud/flower development photos - from slightly open to fully open to aging flowers. This should confirm the identity of this rose as 'Black Magic'.


    Bookmark   March 10, 2009 at 4:06AM
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i have the same rose.i can not find out what kind it is.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2009 at 12:59PM
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Here are some pics of Black Magic for comparison. Hope this helps. Jeff

    Bookmark   June 2, 2009 at 1:22PM
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canadian_rose(zone 3a)

Could also be Black Cherry. Does your rose have fragrance? Black Cherry doesn't.

Wow!! Black Magic looks fantastic!!


    Bookmark   June 2, 2009 at 4:20PM
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ajpa(z6 se PA)

tropical_philippines, just curious, are you in Manila or outside? That looks like the roses I had at my wedding -- all I know is that my MIL bought them in the market.
Ang galing naman naitanim mo galing sa bulaklak.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2009 at 5:32PM
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OMG!!! Aurora, that Black Magic looks unbelievable. I just added Black Magic to my must-have list for next year. The blooms are out of this world, and the bush is ultra gorgeous.

How could I have missed this one???!!!!

    Bookmark   June 3, 2009 at 1:45AM
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