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Sambucus racemosa

Red Elderberry

Red Elderberry has large pyramidal clusters of creamy white flowers in spring that are a good source of nectar for insects. Clusters of red berries follow in summer and are a great source of food for birds and other wildlife. This large shrub is easy to grow and moist tolerant.

Benefits

Tolerates wet feet
Easy care and fast growing
Key nesting site for native insects
Native songbirds love its fall berries
Berries make great wine or jam
A nectar magnet for native bees and butterflies

Homeowner Growing and Maintenance Tips

Prefers full sun to light shade, in moist to mesic conditions. Where summer weather is hot, some protection from the afternoon sun is desirable.


Height
10-18 Feet

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Spread
8-10 Feet

USDA Hardiness Zone 3-9

Native Range

moist areas from Coast to Coast with the exception of Nebraska south to Texas and all the Gulf Coast States

Native Trivia

Early Americans used this plant's hollow stems as straws, blowpipes, whistles and pipe stems. Bark was used to help new mothers produce milk and leaves were mashed to relieve sore muscles and blood poisoning.


"Native bees and butterflies find these large flowers addictive while I wait for the juicy berries"

Characteristics & Attributes

Plan Sub Group
Medium to Tall Shrubs
Exposure
Filtered Shade
Morning Sun / Afternoon Shade
Sun
Soil
Well-drained
Soil Moisture Preference
Average
Dry
Moist
Moist but well-drained
Attracts Wildlife
Beneficial insects
Butterflies
Mammals
Songbirds
Bloom Time
Late Spring / Early Summer
Summer
Critter Resistance
Rabbit Resistant
Habitat Collection
Butterfly
Songbird
Wet Sun
Native Habitat
Coastal
Forest
Grassland
Riparian, wetland
Foliage Color
Green
Uses
Accent
Bog, water garden
Border
Cut or dried flower
Hedge, screen
Naturalizes
Ornamental fruit
Native to
Alaska
Arizona
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Georgia
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kentucky
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Missouri
Montana
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Dakota
Tennessee
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming