Tulips, one of the most popular cut flowers in the world, come in pretty much every color under the sun.  Seriously: the Royal Horticultural Association of Holland has recognized over 3,000 different cultivated tulip varieties, with colors ranging from deep maroon to white-and-green striped.

There is one color tulip you probably won’t find: a black one.  In the story The Black Tulip by Alexandre Dumas a 100,000 florin reward (in present day dollars, that’s quite a big prize!) is offered to the first person in the city of Haarlem, Netherlands to grow a truly black tulip.  In the story, the black tulip becomes not only symbol for justice and tolerance, but also a symbol for divine love between two people.  No one ends up finding the secret to producing the elusive flower, and black tulips remain undocumented in the real world, as well.  Perhaps black tulips symbolize something that can never exist…better to stick with one of the below colors:

White and Cream tulips symbolize heaven, newness and purity:

Multicolored or Variegated tulips mean “you have beautiful eyes:”

Pink tulips invoke thoughts of affection and caring:

Red tulips mean “believe me” or proclaim of true love:

Orange tulips symbolize energy, enthusiasm, desire, and passion:

Yellow tulips are meant to compliment the recipient on “a sunny smile” or evoke feelings of cheerfulness:

Purple tulips symbolize royalty: