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Elder

Sambucus nigra

Plant Data

Order:
Dipsacales
Family:
Caprifoliaceae (Honeysuckle)
Flowering Months:
JAN  FEB  MAR  APR  MAY  JUN  JUL  AUG  SEP  OCT  NOV  DEC
Flowers:
White and yellow anthers, 5 petals, growing in flat-topped clusters.
Fruit:
Clusters of purplish-black berries. The fruiting stems are either green or red.
Leaves:
Deciduous tree or shrub. Dark green, pinnate leaves with 5 to 7 leaflets.
Maximum Size:
10 meters tall.
Foraging Notes:
Berries are edible but are slightly toxic so have an unpleasant taste. For this reason, it's perhaps advisable to cook them and restrict your intake. There are many recipes that can be made from the flowers and berries, these include, elderflower cordial, elderflower wine, pies, jams, elderflower fritter, elderflower champagne, tea and syrups. Rich in vitamin C. The seeds, leaves and stems are all poisonous.
Never consume a wild plant unless you are 100% certain that it is safe to eat and you know that you have identified it correctly.
Aroma:
Flowers and leaves smell strongly of cat's urine.
Other Names:
American Elder, Black Elder, Black-berried Alder, Boor Tree, Bountry, Canada Elderberry, Common Elder, Common Elderberry, Elderberry, Ellanwood, Ellhorn, European Black Elderberry, European Black Elderflower, European Elder, European Elderflower, Sweet Elder.
Habitats:
Farmland, grassland, hedgerows, roadsides, scrub, wasteland, woodland.