Freshly harvested and processed elderflowers, ready to be dehydrated or used fresh in recipes. So, you will just have to plant your own! Next, consider using probiotic foliar sprays. If birds are putting a sizable dent in your elderberry production, try hanging aluminum pie pans in your elderberry trees. Growing elderberry trees in an edible urban landscape works perfectly. They yield 10-15 pounds of dark purple fruit on a mature plant. Elderberries are hardy from USDA zones 3 to 11 (depending on the variety) and are pest free. If you go with option b, be sure to first amend the soil with ~40% compost to native soil. 2002). We also write for Edible Upcountry Magazine, so be sure to check out our articles over there as well! Elderberries also have moderate contents of vitamin B6 (18% DV) and iron (12% DV), with no other nutrients in significant content. A bowl and a colander to store and wash the elderberries. Dang delicious, and a potent medicine as well. Elderberries are unique in a few ways. Another nice thing about growing elderberry trees: ours have never had a pest or disease problem despite our location. I did not get them covered to keep the birds away, it seemed the flowers either were eaten by something or dropped off. Get our recipe here. Sambucus canadensis plants feature dark purple-black berries and produce excellent quality fruit. Plant elderberry plants in the spring, spacing plants 6-10 feet (2 to 3 m.) apart. As per Wikipedia: “Raw elderberries are 80% water, 18% carbohydrates, and less than 1% each of protein and fat. The first year your elderberry trees produce flowers (year 2 or 3 after you start them), you’ll have a decision to make: should you harvest the flowers? Thank you for your time and consideration. The canes attain their full height within the first season and develop lateral branches in the second season. Then top-dress the compost with a 3-6″ layer of wood chips/mulch. 100 grams of fresh berries contain 73 calories, 18.4 grams of carbs and less than 1 gram each of fat and protein ( 3 ). This means you should grow at least two varieties of elderberries. Wait until your elderberries are fully ripe before picking them. It takes about 1 hour to process 1.5 lbs of fruit. By the third year, fruit production begins to wane, especially on elderberry that has not been pruned. We’ve irrigated our mature elderberry trees once: during a “150 year drought” three summers ago when we didn’t get rain for 3 months and temps remained in the 90s. Instead, they have to be pulled off by hand. Elderberry, aka Sambucus, is a small, deciduous tree that grows in virtually every temperate region on earth. :) Elderflower and elderberry do not look alike nor do they bring exactly the same qualities to foods. ‘York’ is another popular variety that we have yet to grow. We have so much fruit (including dozens of pounds of ripe elderberries each day in the summer), that birds don’t make a noticeable dent in our elderberry production. Tyrant Farms’ fermented elderflower cordial is our favorite use of elderflowers. However, all of the bred varieties we grow produce significantly larger berries and larger yields than the wild elderberry plants in our area. After that, you can prune the elderberry bushes in early spring by cutting them back and removing all the dead areas. This is because elderberries send up many new canes each year. If you’re foraging during flower season, typically in May-June (though it will vary depending on your regional climate), investigate the shape of the flowerhead, which you’ll sometimes hear called an umbel or cyme. We have four mature elderberry trees, and they produce all the flowers and fruit we can handle. COVID-19 update: Due to COVID 19, we will have several restrictions for farm visits this season, in order for everyone to stay safe. Yes. If you want to make a syrup, elderflower may be swapped out for elderberry in some cases. Repeat until done. Once ripened, harvest the fruit and strip it from the cluster. Once you’ve removed the elderflowers from the stalk, you can either dry them for long term storage OR make them immediately into magical concoctions. Or if you know how to identify wild elderberry plants, you can source your own cuttings. They are usually rooted and ready for transplanting in early June. 3). Those will mature into ripe elderberries over the course of ~1 month. In food and beverage alone, elderberries are essential for making delicious juice, wines, syrups, and jams! Repeat until you have all the flowers you want. Although this is the objectively perceived taste of this fruit, some people may consider the taste too intense when eating the berries raw, while others will go ahead and easily eat them as snacks. The annual average yield is about 12-15 pounds per plant. So when are elderberries ripe? Both the berries and the flowers contain these nutrients in differing amounts. We grow Sambucus canadensis varieties, and recommend you do as well — if you live in the ranges on the map above where they grow natively. I live in zone 5b, southern Michigan. The elderberry flowers are also used internally for treating influenza and skin irritation. You don’t need to do any pruning during the first two years of an elderberry tree’s life. Elderberries contain anthocyanin flavonoids which are particularly noted for their free radical quenching activity throughout the cardiovascular system. The Elderberry is a small bush, peppered with delicate white flowers (i.e. Elderberries produce in late summer, during August and September. It grows in a variety of conditions including both wet and dry fertile soils, primarily in sunny locations. Grow elderberry trees is actually quite easy. A small crop of elderberries will be produced in the plant’s first year, but the most productive harvest time for elderberries will be in their second year. Its flowers will also attract butterflies. Elders need about an inch of water a week, so be sure to irrigate them during dry spells. The genus was formerly placed in the honeysuckle family, Caprifoliaceae, but was reclassified as Adoxaceae due to genetic and morphological comparisons to pl… Freshly harvested elderberry clusters at Tyrant Farms, ready to have the berries removed from the stems. Processed elderberries using the “bucket method.”. Frozen elderberries will last for years. Elderberry The elderberry is full of antioxidants. Such a high antioxidant potential in American elderberries has been confirmed in our laboratory.”. It’s easiest to snip the cluster of berries from the plant and then remove individual fruits. To plant, simply follow steps 4 and 5 from the elderberry cuttings section above. Here’s a beautiful question mark butterfly (Polygonia interrogationis) resting on one of our elderberry trees. ), If you’d like to plant your elderberry trees more densely, space them no closer than. Find more gardening information on Gardening Know How: Keep up to date with all that's happening in and around the garden. It seems appropriate that the elder is under the sign of Venus. Last year when I bought them, they were tiny shrubs in 4 inch pots and looked rather ragged for wear. Elderberries grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 through 8. Common names include elder, elderberry, black elder, European elder, European elderberry, and European black elderberry. Gins in which elderberries are noticeable to taste: Burleighs London Dry Gin and Shortcross Gin make good use of elderberries – (the latter involving the flower in its botanical line up as mentioned above as well). The plant grows clusters of round, purplish-black berries that are a hit with songbirds. Each spring the plant is covered with clusters of tiny white flowers that are … A beautiful 5-gallon bucket full of perfectly ripe elderberries from Tyrant Farms. American (Sambucus canadensis) and European (S. nigra) elderberries grow anywhere from 5 to 20 feet in height. Keep the soil moist (but not wet) until you see new growth on the cutting by ensuring that it gets at least 1″ of water per week via rain or irrigation. We know you want to take elderberries right away, seeing these benefits. Trees this year with delicate white flowers that are safe to eat are the growing.! 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