Elderberry, Blue (Sambucus caerulea), packet of 50 seeds


Family: Honeysuckle (Caprifoliaceae)

Hardy to Zones 5 to 7

(Blue Elderberry, Blue Elder) Deciduous shrub to small tree native to Western US.  Wild form. A pretty tree, tough in the landscape, bedecked in season by lush flowers and then dangling clusters of blue berries, characteristically dusted with white wax.  Elderberry berries are rich in anthocyanins, bioflavonoids, vitamins and antioxidants. Cultivation: We are providing pure seeds from the new harvest.  Soak seeds for up to 2 weeks in pure cold water in a jar in the fridge before planting.  Do not be alarmed if seeds float–floating elderberry seeds are viable!  Sow soaked seeds in outdoor conditions, in pots or flats, in the fall and expect germination in the spring.  Alternatively, you may store the seeds in moist medium in a sealed plastic bag or jar in the refrigerator (not the freezer) for 90 days, then remove from fridge and sow in cool, moist shade.  Outdoor conditions are preferred–do not try to grow indoors in a bright window–oscillating temperatures are required. Sow seeds in very rich and composty soil medium.  Once germinated, the seedling grows very rapidly.  Seedlings and adult trees are Nitrogen lovers–give chicken manure or copious amounts of compost for best results. Grow out in a shaded place in pots for a year before transplanting to final location.   Flowers generally appear in year 3. Flowers turn rapidly into heavy clusters of fruits.  Its probably a good idea to grow 3 trees for pollination purposes, although we have certainly seen good crops of fruit from a single tree grown in isolation.  Elderberries are best placed as an understory to a higher tree canopy. Will also grow in full sun if the roots are kept cool and moist.

50  seed/pkt, Open Pollinated, Untreated, NO GMOs


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  1. Question

    Toni Young

    Will this grow in zone 8? (I live in extreme SW Arkansas)

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    • Richo Cech

      Richo Cech

      Hi Tony, Not the best choice, as it is a species that prefers cool mountain weather. You can go for the Sambucus candensis that does better in humid heat. I’m waiting for the new harvest (Oct) to list this again. Stay tuned.

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