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Elderberry, is a versatile and valuable native shrub prized for its edible berries, fragrant flowers, and wildlife-attracting properties. A deciduous shrub that typically grows to heights of 5 to 12 feet tall with a similar spread. It features multiple stems adorned with compound leaves consisting of 5 to 9 leaflets that are dark green and serrated along the edges. In late spring to early summer, the shrub produces clusters of small, creamy-white flowers with a sweet, musky fragrance. These flowers give way to clusters of dark purple to black berries in late summer to early fall, which are highly prized for their culinary and medicinal uses.

Growing Conditions:

- Thrives in moist, well-drained soil with moderate fertility.

- Prefers full sun to partial shade, though it can tolerate some shade.

- Hardy in USDA zones 3-9, making it adaptable to a wide range of climates.

- Drought-tolerant once established but benefits from regular watering, especially during dry spells.

Maintenance:

- Prune in late winter to early spring to remove dead or diseased branches and promote vigorous growth.

- Mulch around the base of the plant to conserve moisture and suppress weeds.

- Fertilize in spring with a balanced, slow-release fertilizer to support healthy growth and fruiting.

- Remove suckers and thin out crowded growth to maintain an open, airy habit.

Wildlife Attraction:

- The flowers of Elderberry are highly attractive to pollinators such as bees and butterflies, enhancing biodiversity in the garden.

- Provides habitat and food for various species of birds, which feed on the berries and use the shrub for nesting sites and shelter.

- The dense foliage offers cover and protection for small mammals and other wildlife, adding to the ecological value of the landscape.

Elderberry, Sambucus canadensis

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