Plant Finder

Black Velvet Purple Smokebush

Cotinus coggygria 'Black Velvet'

Add To My Wish List

Black Velvet Purple Smokebush (Cotinus coggygria 'Black Velvet') at Glenwild Garden Center

Black Velvet Purple Smokebush foliage

Black Velvet Purple Smokebush foliage

(Photo courtesy of NetPS Plant Finder)

Height:  15 feet

Spread:  15 feet

Sunlight:  full sun 

Hardiness Zone:  4b


Beautiful deep, dark purple leaves with black overtones, and billowy puffs of gray-pink 'smoke' flowers cover this outstanding selection in summer; excellent as a landscape accent or hedge; brilliant red-orange, yellow and purple fall color

Ornamental Features

Black Velvet Purple Smokebush features airy plumes of pink flowers with gray overtones at the ends of the branches from early to late summer. It has attractive deep purple foliage with hints of black which emerges burgundy in spring. The round leaves are highly ornamental and turn outstanding shades of red, yellow and purple in the fall.

Landscape Attributes

Black Velvet Purple Smokebush is a multi-stemmed deciduous shrub with an upright spreading habit of growth. Its average texture blends into the landscape, but can be balanced by one or two finer or coarser trees or shrubs for an effective composition.

This shrub will require occasional maintenance and upkeep, and is best pruned in late winter once the threat of extreme cold has passed. Deer don't particularly care for this plant and will usually leave it alone in favor of tastier treats. It has no significant negative characteristics.

Black Velvet Purple Smokebush is recommended for the following landscape applications;

  • Accent
  • Mass Planting
  • Hedges/Screening
  • General Garden Use
  • Container Planting

Planting & Growing

Black Velvet Purple Smokebush will grow to be about 15 feet tall at maturity, with a spread of 15 feet. It tends to be a little leggy, with a typical clearance of 1 foot from the ground, and is suitable for planting under power lines. It grows at a medium rate, and under ideal conditions can be expected to live for 40 years or more.

This shrub should only be grown in full sunlight. It is very adaptable to both dry and moist locations, and should do just fine under average home landscape conditions. It is not particular as to soil type or pH. It is highly tolerant of urban pollution and will even thrive in inner city environments. This is a selected variety of a species not originally from North America.

Black Velvet Purple Smokebush makes a fine choice for the outdoor landscape, but it is also well-suited for use in outdoor pots and containers. Its large size and upright habit of growth lend it for use as a solitary accent, or in a composition surrounded by smaller plants around the base and those that spill over the edges. It is even sizeable enough that it can be grown alone in a suitable container. Note that when grown in a container, it may not perform exactly as indicated on the tag - this is to be expected. Also note that when growing plants in outdoor containers and baskets, they may require more frequent waterings than they would in the yard or garden.

Hardiness Zone Plant Height Minimum Sunlight
Accent  Massing  Screening  Garden  Container 
Flowers  Foliage Color  Fall Color 
Ornamental Features