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Texas Gardening: Elderberry Stories - Anyone growing them?

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Garden_Sass
Central, TX
(Zone 8b)

January 23, 2013
6:47 AM

Post #9394533

Drought or no drought, I'm gonna try growing elderberries for tea (flowers only), jelly, wine and because they're just darn pretty! Haven't seen any in local nurseries (could be bad news) so I ordered 4 from Starks (big bucks) - they should be here in a couple of weeks. I have seen one huge one growing in a yard in town but when the house sold it was cut down - bummer.

Please tell me if you're growing them, what care they're given, where they like to grow in your yard and if you use the flowers and fruit (which must be properly cooked) for edibles.

Sassy

frostweed

frostweed
Josephine, Arlington, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 23, 2013
12:14 PM

Post #9394974

I have been growing Elderberries for many years and I love them, they do very well for me here in north central Texas.
They do like more water than some other plants, but they are beautiful and almost evergreen here.
I don't get to pick any of the berries anymore, the birds and the squirrels get them first, but I used to make some great elderberry jam, it is my favorite.
Josephine.

dfwdennis

dfwdennis
Grapevine, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 23, 2013
8:08 PM

Post #9395526

I had a non-native black elderberry and it didn't do well so I eventually pulled it and replaced it with a native elderberry, which is doing very well and grew from a 6 in cutting to a 9 foot plant within a few years.
Garden_Sass
Central, TX
(Zone 8b)

January 24, 2013
5:13 AM

Post #9395671

Are they in full sun or partial shade?

frostweed

frostweed
Josephine, Arlington, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 24, 2013
6:16 AM

Post #9395732

Mine are in partial shade along a fence with trees in the general area, but not under them.
I think full Texas sun is too much for Elderberries.
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 24, 2013
1:16 PM

Post #9396294

I read over the Just Fruits and Exotics for Elderberries panic button section, which gives tons of info on the various fruit plants they sell.

They say Elderberries like extra water, can be trellised, like afternoon dappled shade or partial shade but not too much shade, 1 cup of 10-10-10 or 10-0-10 for each year of a elderberry’s age in late
February, late May and late July/early August (i.e. 1 cup per application for a one year-old elderberry,
2 cups for a two year-old). Continue increasing fertilizer yearly until application rate reaches 4 cups. Do not fertilize after August. Clear out dead branches and can/will sucker. Found wild in southern wetlands and the fruits make great jams, wine, pancakes, etc. Plant extra for birds--that covers what Josephine says, too. ☺

I checked with my co-operative extension agent and while ago as I'm adding fruit trees and fruit bushes to my garden. He gave me a list of the fruits and berries we can grow in our area and Elderberries were on the list, so check with your extension agent.

I have Elderberries on my radar and I want some, too. I think they sound like fun. But I'm waiting to get the fruit plants I have now up and going before I start to add more. I want to buy them local so if anyone has a local source please post on this thread and I will save it.

Have fun with your Elderberrie, Garden_Sass. And let us know how you make out with them.

dfwdennis

dfwdennis
Grapevine, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 24, 2013
2:53 PM

Post #9396403

Mine are in very similar conditions as frostweed's. There are also some wild ones growing at the end of the woods a little way from my house.
ilovejesus99
Baytown, TX
(Zone 9b)

January 25, 2013
9:52 AM

Post #9397214

I have 1 that gets morning sun for about 4hrs and 1 that gets 3/4 day sun. The one in the shade is doing great. The one in the sun is alot younger but seems to do well also. They grow fast and are in well draining soil. They get alot of water as I have to keep everything around it watered. Hope this helps. I kept some seeds but have to find them.

I did cut it way back...hope I didn't do something wrong. Did I?

frostweed

frostweed
Josephine, Arlington, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 25, 2013
11:27 AM

Post #9397280

No you didn't, it will grow back in no time.
peony1066
Sugar Land, TX
(Zone 9a)

January 26, 2013
6:38 PM

Post #9398596

I got my elderberry from Barton Springs Nursery in Austin. One grows in full sun and one in partial shade. The one that is in full sun does need a lot of water.
ilovejesus99
Baytown, TX
(Zone 9b)

January 27, 2013
10:41 AM

Post #9399123

Thanks Josephine :)
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 28, 2013
6:21 AM

Post #9399883

Thank you peony1066. I haven't found any locally. I still have to check out Bruce Miller. If they dont' have it I'll see about a local mail order.

frostweed

frostweed
Josephine, Arlington, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 28, 2013
8:16 AM

Post #9400047

Terry, if you come to our spring swap I can give you a potted cutting.

dfwdennis

dfwdennis
Grapevine, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 28, 2013
8:53 AM

Post #9400105

One nice thing is that they mature FAST. Mine went from a six inch cutting to 8 feet in just a few years.
grits74571
Talihina, OK

January 29, 2013
4:51 AM

Post #9400975

I have Elderberries everywhere some I planted from root stock to hide my rather unsightly work shop If left alone it can become quite invasive .One place I put some was to hide my rain barrels and that group is leafing out already ..Most of mine were planted by birds and I never have the heart to pull them up until it is too late Did any one ever try Elderberry blossum pancakes just add a cup of cleaned and washed blossum to you favorite pancake mix ..I haven't made any like that in a long time as DW doesn't like them but I think they add a wonderful kinda lemony flavor

frostweed

frostweed
Josephine, Arlington, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 29, 2013
5:44 AM

Post #9401018

I just dig out and pot the stray shoots and give them to friends or sell them. Haven't tried the flower fritters, but I do love the jam from the berries.
grits74571
Talihina, OK

January 30, 2013
5:54 AM

Post #9402317

A few years ago we had a thread on freezing and canning all about elderberries so I feel I should retell this tale I was hunting in northrn Nevada in the Pine Forest Range and came upon an Elderberry growing in a small space between two very large Granite boulders and it had berries on it ..This was at an elevation of 7k feet just saying this is the most adaptable plant that I know of..I love them everything about them jam Jelly syrup and the pancakes
peony1066
Sugar Land, TX
(Zone 9a)

January 31, 2013
7:59 AM

Post #9403659

I come from Idaho and every June we would go to the woods and collect elderberry blossoms and make a hair rinse of them. We collected something from them all season.

When I was a child I heard stories about taking care not to use elder wood around babies for cradles for fear they would be stolen by fairies and replaced by a changling or never to hit a child with an elder stick because they would be cursed and never grow. These were stories my grandmother told that she heard from her grandmother and she passed them on as folklore.
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

January 31, 2013
8:02 AM

Post #9403662

Cool, peony! I love those stories...
steadycam3
Houston Heights, TX
(Zone 9a)

February 1, 2013
9:42 PM

Post #9405563

I would be glad to pot up some elderberries for anyone who wants them. I can bring to the spring RU. LMK
terri_emory
Alba, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 4, 2013
7:34 AM

Post #9407943

Thank you for the kind offer of elderberrie cuttings. I probably won't make a round up this year as I am now working many extra hours per week. My newest assitant did not pan out (again).

frostweed

frostweed
Josephine, Arlington, TX
(Zone 8a)

February 4, 2013
8:18 AM

Post #9407991

Well in that case if another member from your area comes to the swap, we can send it with him or her to you.
ilovejesus99
Baytown, TX
(Zone 9b)

February 4, 2013
6:01 PM

Post #9408658

If I find a small one growing I can send it to you for postage. :)
grits74571
Talihina, OK

February 5, 2013
5:07 AM

Post #9408958

I have a big clump of a root if anyone wants just let me know had to dig it up during the construction of the new Hugelkulture bed

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