opp2
Senior Member
Posts: 137
Joined: Mon Jul 03, 2006 11:47 am
Location: Greater Toronto Area-zone 4-5

black beauty elderberry

I recently purchased a small black leaved plant, and when I asked the lady at the nursery she said yeah, it'll be good for a foundation plant. I know the tag said it could grow to 4 feet tall. I'm ok with that, I thought I'd prune it. Now my sister in law dropped in tonight and she said, after I just finished planting this black beauty, that that birds will eat the fruit and then poop nice purple stains on my car that I won't get off. And I was reading that it is toxic, sometimes to other plants around it. I planted it for contrast with a euonymous and a lime leaved ninebark...

I have no problem pulling the plant up and moving it, however is it neccessary? I'll still have the bird issue. the area it is in, I will be pruning it back hard to keep it 2 feet or so tall.

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Jess
Greener Thumb
Posts: 1023
Joined: Mon Mar 19, 2007 11:50 pm
Location: England

Hi Opp2 :D

I wonder how easy it will be to keep this to 4ft? Most Sambucus (including mine S. Racemosa) reach 10ft or more! As for toxicity to neighbouring plants mine is next to a Phormium and my Rhubarb plus some bulbs and perennials and they seem to grow quite happily. It has been there for three years so I think if it were going to cause a problem it would have done so by now.
I found it quite amusing about the birds and the berries as I grow thornless blackberries which I never manage to pick as the blackbirds devour them so fast and our patio and garden are covered in purple droppings. :lol: I suppose you could always cut them off as soon as they form.

opp2
Senior Member
Posts: 137
Joined: Mon Jul 03, 2006 11:47 am
Location: Greater Toronto Area-zone 4-5

Jess wrote:Hi Opp2 :D

I wonder how easy it will be to keep this to 4ft? Most Sambucus (including mine S. Racemosa) reach 10ft or more! As for toxicity to neighbouring plants mine is next to a Phormium and my Rhubarb plus some bulbs and perennials and they seem to grow quite happily. It has been there for three years so I think if it were going to cause a problem it would have done so by now.
I found it quite amusing about the birds and the berries as I grow thornless blackberries which I never manage to pick as the blackbirds devour them so fast and our patio and garden are covered in purple droppings. :lol: I suppose you could always cut them off as soon as they form.
Thanks Jess...after much research, and such a short time in the ground, I moved the plant out to the back yard into a corner not yet occupied..it has plenty of room to grow, however I don't think it will get any fruit as I've read that they need another elderberry to cross polinate. So unless any of my neighbours have planted one near by..maybe we'll just get pretty flowers...

I bought a wine and roses weigela for the front as I know I can keep it pruned to the right size and it has the perfect colour of foliage for contrast...

Geek
Full Member
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri May 18, 2007 5:11 am
Location: Mississippi

Funny story, my wife and I bought an elderberry when we moved into our new place cause we now had room (3 acres) and wanted to plant lots of fruit trees and bushes. We got our elderberry and planted it in our front pasture near a clump of vegetation. It started growing that summer and we noticed it looked a lot like the plants in the clump where we planted it. Ended up they grow like weeds here and we have 100's on them around our pasture. I guess we are set for elderberries. :D

On a related note, they are prolific. Be on the lookout for them popping up everywhere. If those "purple spots" fall on dirt you will have a plant there in no time.

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