Elderberry Plants – Sambucus Nigra
The common Elderberry plant is Sambucus Nigra or ‘Black Elderberry’ a small deciduous shrub whose berries are used to make elderberry wine. Elderberry plants are also grown as ornamental plants in the garden and are frost tolerant. Full sun and a well drained humus rich soil will provide the best results for growing Sambucus nigra. Plants are available for sale from Mail Order Nurseries,
These plants are relatively easy to grow in the cooler parts of Australia.
Growing Conditions and Care
All varieties require a moist humus rich fertile soil. Elderberry trees (shrubs) will eventually reach 5 – 6 m and come into full production about 3 years after planting.
Flowering in summer with pretty cream flowers followed by black berries ready to harvest in late summer to early autumn. The berries are used to make wine.
- Sambucus nigra Laciniata
A better ornamental form than the the common form (Sambucus Nigra) larger flowers and it still fruits. Very attractive finely cut foliage, almost fern like. white flowers in spring. Flowers are followed by deep purple fruits.
- Look for Sambucus nigra Aurea
This is the Golden Elder, a fast growing large deciduous shrub. Golden yellow leaves. Flowers form as flattened heads of creamy coloured, fragrant blooms in spring to summer.
- Sambucus nigra ‘Guincho Purple’
Very easy to grow with foliage that emerges green, quickly turning to an attractive purple to black. Autumn foliage is a good red. New flower buds are pink, as the flowers open they turn to white.
These three grown together should give excellent cross pollination, better flowers and better berries.
Others to consider include :
Sambucus nigra Pulverulenta
A very interesting variety with foliage that is a mid green heavily speckled with white.
Sambucus nigra Madonna
Leaves have a very strong golden margin.
Sambucus nigra Marginiata
A fast growing variety with green lance spaded foliage with creamy white leaf margins.
- Sambucus nigra Black Lace
This is a cut leafed variety with very deep purple to black foliage.Flowers are pink from spring to summer followed by berries.
Elderberry plants are available for sale from the following nurseries
'Justly famous for rare and unusual plants' Don Teese
34 Mt Pleasant Rd Monbulk VIC 3793
Medicinal, Teas and Kitchen Herbs. Edible plants, scented and ornamentals.
Wide range of perennial edibles and medicinals, berries, fruit and unusual food plants, by mail order.
412 James Lane, Fern Hill VIC. 3458 - Phone 0419002651
Large range of Rare plants, Climbers, Bulbs, Perennials Fruit Trees, Ornamental Trees and Shrubs. Available both Retail and by Mail Order