The Elder (Sambucus nigra) tree is native throughout the British Isles and can grow to around 9m. The Elderberry usually flourishes wherever the nitrogen content of the soil is high and does well in rich neglected ground. The plant colonises an area quickly due to its speed of growth. According to folklore if you burned Elder, you would see the devil but if you planted an Elder tree near your home you would keep the devil away.
Large instantly recognisable white flower heads appear in early July followed by a mass of small black fruit. The fruit and flowers make excellent wines and jams, as well as Elderflower cordial and are rich in vitamin C.
The current height of the trees is approximately 10-20cm and they can be planted out all year round.
- Plant in wet, dry, exposed and upland sites
- Like most soil types
- Flowers used for Elderflower cordial
- Widespread across the UK