Aeonium arboreum 'Zwartkop'

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Photo Courtesy of Walters Gardens, Inc.
 Common Name: Aeonium-Black Rose
Common Name (Alternative): Purple Crest Aeonium

Long grown for its dramatic near-black foliage, this succulent adds drama and interest to containers and troughs, especially when combined with yellow or red plants. 

It forms large rosettes of fleshy, pointed spoon shaped leaves that are completely near-black when grown in at least a half day of full sun.  When grown in more shade, the rosettes are reddish purple with a green center.  In climates where this plant is hardy, the foliage is evergreen. Bright yellow flowers are produced in large racemes from the center of the main rosette in summer. 

‘Zwartkop’ is commonly grown in containers as a temperennial where it is not hardy.  In such cases, the plants will grow as large as the container allows.  Where plants are hardy enough to overwinter, they develop into shrub-like plants that can grow 5-6 feet tall.

‘Zwartkop’ tends to require more regular watering than ‘Kiwi’ and is more sun tolerant.  It has a smaller, shallow root system and is less drought tolerant than some other Aeoniums.  Though it requires good drainage, it can take somewhat heavier soil than ‘Kiwi’.

Origin: Not Native to North America


  10-12 Inches
  10-12 Inches
Flower Color:
  Yellow Shades
Foliage Color:
  Near-black shades
Hardiness Zone:
Find Your Zone
Sun or Shade?:
  Full sun (> 6 hrs. direct sun)
  Part shade (4-6 hrs. direct sun)
Wet or dry?:
  Low water needs
  Average water needs
Need critter resistant plants?:
  Deer resistant
How fast should it grow?:
When should it bloom?:
How's your soil?:
  Poor Soil
  Average Soil
Sweet or Sour Soil?:
  Acidic Soil (pH < 7.0)
What's your garden style?:
  Rock Garden


Salt Tolerant
Grown for attractive foliage


  Royal Horticultural Society's Award of Garden Merit 1993

Homeowner Growing & Maintenance Tips:

Aeonium is a tender perennial or "temperennial".  It is hardy in zone 9 and warmer, but is commonly grown as an annual in colder zones and overwintered as a houseplant.  Though Aeoniums are drought tolerant succulents, 'Zwartkop' prefers more regular watering than some others since it has a relatively small, shallow root system.  It requires quite a bit of sun to draw out the dark purple coloring.  A mildly acidic soil pH is best.  Aeoniums are salt tolerant and deer resistant.


Common/Botanical Name
Aeonium haworthii 'Kiwi'
Common Name: Aeonium-Kiwi
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While every effort has been made to describe this plant accurately, please keep in mind that the height, bloom time, and color may differ in various climates throughout the country. The description of this plant was written based on our experience growing it in Michigan (USDA hardiness zone 5) and on numerous outside resources.