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Blue Elderberry (Sambucus cerulea)

Blue Elderberry (Sambucus cerulea)

Regular price $30.00 CAD
Regular price Sale price $30.00 CAD
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Local Pickup Available in Harrop, BC

1 year old bare root seedling 8”-18” 

The Blue Elderberry, also known as Sambucus cerulea, is an attractive addition to any garden, offering a blend of ornamental beauty and practical utility. This deciduous shrub or small tree can grow up to 10 feet tall and wide, making a striking visual impact. Its lush, compound leaves and clusters of tiny white or cream flowers in late spring or early summer add a touch of elegance. In the fall, the plant becomes even more striking with its clusters of blue-black berries against the backdrop of yellowing leaves.

Berry Production: Blue Elderberry is highly valued for its abundant berry production. The berries are popular for making jams, jellies, medicinal syrups, and wines. They are rich in vitamins and antioxidants, making them a healthy choice for garden-to-table enthusiasts. Harvesting typically occurs in late summer or early fall when the berries are fully ripe.

Wildlife Value: This plant is helpful for wildlife. It provides nectar for pollinators such as bees and butterflies during its flowering season. The berries are a vital food source for various bird species and small mammals, making it an excellent choice for those looking to create a wildlife-friendly garden.

Growth and Care:

  • Site Preferences: Sambucus cerulea prefers full sun to partial shade. It thrives in a range of environments but favors locations that receive morning sunlight and afternoon shade.
  • Soil Preferences: This plant is adaptable to various soil types but grows best in well-drained, loamy soils. It tolerates both acidic and alkaline pH levels.
  • Water Preferences: Blue Elderberry prefers regular watering, especially in dry conditions. However, it has moderate drought tolerance once established.

Hardiness and Cold Tolerance:  Grows in zones 4 through 9, capable of withstanding cold winds and late frost conditions. This adaptability makes it suitable for gardens in many Canadian regions.

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The Tree

Height at maturity:up to 20 feet or can be kept small by coppice culture

Hardiness Zone:

Zone 4, worth experimenting in sheltered zone 3

Water Requirements:

Light to medium

Years to bear:



Partial to Full Sun


Self Fertile


-Can tolerate heavy clay to dry to sand but of course is best situated in rich loamy well draining soil

The Benefits

-Coppice Culture Champion
-Bountiful Berry Production
-Great for wildlife
- Can thrive in poor soils

Additional info

-One of the few elders that can’t be propagated from cuttings
-Native to the west