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Enjoyed your pix's on your elderberries. Especially because I have tried this myself. This looks like maybe your first year for these rows? I had a problem with the grasses/weeds. Did you have problems keeping the grass in check? I - TOO - enjoy the elderberries.
Hello, fellow elderberry enthusiast ! These are second year plants in the pictures, we had 2 summers of drought and even with irrigation they suffered. The weeds were/are a problem which I haven't conquered yet. I have tried mulching them to a 4 inch depth and that worked for a few months but then they needed weeding again. I have seen other growers apply sawdust mulch up to a depth of 8-10 inches and then they have no weed problems and the rows look WONDERFUL, however that seems like a bit much in terms of cost and I am not sure how well the elderberry is able to send up new shoots through that much mulch. I am pruning mine to the ground this winter in hopes the plants will return bushier nearer to the bottom and perhaps it will help with my weed control. I have a newer variety (not pictured) Marge that is a European/American cross that IS way bushier so easily chokes out weeds, other aspects make Marge undesirable for large scale commercial growth, but a great backyard plant.