The Elderberry bush in one of the easiest fruit bearing plants that is grown in the garden. It is forgiving of poor soils and less than ideal conditions. Of course, for the best results a rich, loamy soil with plenty of moisture will make life better for both the plant and the gardener.
All parts of the Elderberry plant are toxic except the flower bracts and the ripe berries. Care must be taken with the harvesting and preparation of the berries to remove the stems.
On the plus side, Elderberries are very high in vitamin C and seem to have many health enhancing benefits. Syrups and tinctures are made to be taken daily through cold and flu season as a preventative remedy. Of course we have no medical advise to give since we are humble plantsmen so, do your own research if you choose to use Elderberry that way.
Elderberries are used to make wines, syrups, and jellies and are quite productive for those purposes. There are farms in the Midwest who specialize in growing Elderberries for the wine industry. The flower bracts when in full bloom are sometimes cut, breaded and fried as fritters, Yum!
The Elderberry plant is a large multi stemmed shrub that can grow to 12′ in height and width. It grows by sending up new shoots from the ground every spring. It will spread over time to make quite a thicket if allowed to have its way. To keep it productive, it is good to cut out the older stems each year. Some growers with several plants will cut every other plant to the ground every couple of years to rejuvenate the plant. It may seem drastic but it works. You will need two different varieties to get good pollination.
Below you will find descriptions of the different varieties we offer.
Adams II Elderberry Now Available
The Adams II Elderberry is an older variety of American Elderberry that was selected for berry size, berry cluster size and regularity of bearing. This is a time proven American Elderberry. AdamsII was selected in New York State but bears well throughout the eastern United States.
Bob Gordon Elderberry Now Available
The Bob Gordon Elderberry was selected and released by the University of Missouri for its large flower clusters and uniform ripening. Flower clusters can be as large as 12″ across and the large berries ripen uniformly in mid-July. It is an excellent variety for juicing, jellies and wine production.
Marge Elderberry Join Our Wait List
The Marge Elderberry is a large fruited European Elderberry that is well adapted to American conditions. The large berry size, large cluster size and high vitamin C content make Marge a garden favorite.
Wyldewood Elderberry Now Available
Wyldewood Elderberry is a release from the Elderberry Improvement Project at Missouri State University along with the University of Missouri. This project was an effort to select varieties suited to Midwestern conditions.
The Wyldewood Elderberry is a vigorous, tall, upright growing variety that produces heavy yields every year. Fruit is held off the ground making it easy to harvest.
Wydewood was selected fro a wild plant growing near Brush Hill Oklahoma and named after Wyldewood Cellars Winery in Mulvane Kansas. Wyldewood Cellars is known for their Elderberry wines.
Fruit ripens in late July and outproduces earlier varieties. The fruit ripens consistently making harvest and processing easier.
York Elderberry Now Available
York Elderberry is a productive variety of elderberry. Elderberries are grown for the abundance of black berries that ripen each fall. These berries have medicinal qualities and are made into tinctures as well as juices, jellies and wine.
The 10′ to 15′ plants are handsome and healthy bearing lacy foliage topped with white flowers in early summer followed by black berries in late summer.
The flowers bracts can be battered and fried as fritters. Bees and other pollinators primarily visit these flowers for their pollen.
The plants grow into a large rounded mounded shrub and are hardy in zones 3 to 9 They are quite adaptable, their size will be related to the fertility of the site they are on
This is a tough productive plant with many health related benefits.
Johns Elderberry Now Available
Very large clusters of flowers produce an abundance of juicy berries on large plants. The large flower clusters will make extra large Elderberry fritters.
The tremendous volume of medium sized berries will make plenty of jelly, juice, wine and elderberry syrup.
Johns grows to 6′ to 12′ tall and 8’+ wide