A rather gruesome description for a flower that's really very pretty. I was a bit skeptical when I bought these plants last year. I love old-fashioned flowers like hollyhocks, but BLACK?? Who would want black flowers? I didn't know what to expect and the plants were very young so I didn't get a chance to see what they looked like until now. Yes, they're unusual, but they look spectacular against the white of my house. And they aren't really black—more like a very dark burgundy.
Black Hollyhock (Alcea rosea nigra) was described as early as 1629 by John Parkinson, as being "of a darke red like black blood," an apt description for the large single flowers that grace this plant in June and July.