Saturday, July 26, 2008

Elderberry Envy

I am so jealous! Skye and I made the trek to Louisiana last week, and we saw thousands of elderberry bushes along the roadsides in southern Arkansas and northern Louisiana. I have dreams of making elderberry jelly this fall, but I just don’t know if they will become reality. Last spring I set out two named elderberry bushes in The Woodlot, Adams and Johns. One is growing but did not bloom this year; the other has turned up its toenails and died this summer. While I plan to replace it, that will delay my elderberry crop another year.

This summer I have made note of a few wild elderberry bushes in our area. I plan to go back and harvest when the fruit is ripe. But will I have enough to make jelly?

Future elderberry plans? Well, I plan to replace the dead one. This spring, I plan to take cuttings of the wild bushes I have noted. Perhaps the woodlot will one day produce enough elderberries for jelly and even elderberry wine.


Anonymous said...

I just wanted to give you a little hope. I planted 4 "Adams" elderberry shrubs a few years ago. 3 did fairly well and one went down hard. Thought it was dead and gone. Next Spring it made a comeback. They're hard to least around here. Oregon has elderberries thick in the wooded areas. I have noticed that the wild ones are a little stronger in color and flavor. I am happy with my Adams, though. Heavy production by about the 3rd or 4th season. Now, I have to invite people to come out and pick them. I make jelly every year and now I have plenty to give away. what an awesome Christmas gift.

Good luck from
Grants Pass, Oregon

Anonymous said...

Make sure your elders are in soil that doesn't dry out for long periods. If you notice they are always near the water table when growing in the wild. They also like full sun.

The planting I was given died and afterwards I realized it was the location. It was too dry there.

Laney said...

Thanks for the tip on where to plant. We have kept them watered this summer, and they are in full sun.

Glad to hear that the Johns are working well for you in Oregon. I don't see nearly as many here in northwest Arkansas as in south Arkansas and north Louisiana, but they do grow in the wild, so I'm hoping the named varieties will do well.