Roses are the classic flowers of romance and elegance, and purple roses can make a remarkable statement in a bouquet or garden. This color is available in all types of rose plant cultivars (cultivated varieties), including hybrid tea, floribunda and climbing. Fragrance, shape and purple shade all vary among types, and sometimes even depending on the nutrients available to the rose from the soil and fertilizer. Purple roses may also be grandiflora, miniature or hedge roses.
Shades of Purple
Purple roses, regardless of type, divide into three main categories by shade: lavender, mauve and purple. Lavender roses are the palest shade, with more blue than red defining the purple color, although they can sometimes appear pinkish in photos. Mauve has more red than blue in the purple, sometimes resembling a burgundy color, but still truly purple. Finally, true purple roses are a perfect combination of red and blue, creating an eye-catching, deep purple color.
Purple Hybrid Tea Roses
Rose enthusiasts developed hybrid tea varieties by cross-breeding two kinds of roses. These roses grow tall on straight stems, usually with a single blossom per stem. They are ideal as cut flowers or specimen plants. Varieties of purple tea roses include Silver Star, Blue Moon, Blue Nile, Blue River, Stainless Steel and Neptune.
Purple Floribunda and Grandiflora Roses
Floribunda roses tend to be shrubby, with a profusion of blossoms on every stem, sometimes tending to grow in clusters. They are a modern rose developed by cross-breeding two other rose types. Purple floribunda varieties include Cotillion, Burgundy Iceberg and Enchanted Evening.
Grandifloras are rose bushes similar in form to floribundas, but tend to be larger, with their flowers taking more of a hybrid-tea-rose shape. Melody Parfumee and Sweetness are both grandiflora cultivars.
Purple Climbing Roses
Any variety of rose, including floribunda and hybrid tea, can develop a climbing form. The canes of climbing roses are longer and more flexible than those of bush forms and can reach heights of 8 feet or more, although shorter ones are also available. Night Owl is a purple climbing rose.
Purple Miniature Roses
Measuring 6 to 36 inches in height, miniature roses are often sold as houseplants, although they descend from outdoor shrubs. Most modern miniature roses are repeat bloomers, rather than the single bloomers they once were. Demitasse, Sweet Chariot and Blue Peter are three varieties of modern miniature roses.
Shrub and Purple Hedge Roses
A shrub rose is simply a type of rose that takes on a shrub form, while hedge roses are roses--usually a shrub rose type--used to form a hedge or border. Lavender Dream, Lavender Lassie, Blue Boy and Outta the Blue are purple shrub roses, and Fragrant Lavender Simplicity® is a purple hedge rose.