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Sambucus racemosa (Red elderberry) | NPIN

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Sambucus racemosa (Red elderberry)
Weyand, Phyllis

Sambucus racemosa

Sambucus racemosa L.

Red elderberry

Caprifoliaceae (Honeysuckle Family)


USDA Symbol: SARA2

USDA Native Status: L48 (N), AK (N), CAN (N)

Grows as an upright large shrub or small tree.


Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Tree
Size Notes: 8-20 feet tall.
Size Class: 6-12 ft. , 12-36 ft.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White
Bloom Time: May , Jun


USA: AK , AZ , CA , CO , CT , GA , IA , ID , IL , IN , KY , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , MO , MT , NC , ND , NH , NJ , NM , NV , NY , OH , OR , PA , RI , SD , TN , UT , VA , VT , WA , WI , WV , WY
Canada: AB , BC , NB , NL , NS , ON , PE
Native Habitat: Woodland,Savannah,Wet Meadow/Prairie/Field,Riparian

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist , Wet


Use Wildlife: Hummingbirds, Butterflies
Use Food: Although the berries are reputedly poisonous, they were very popular with the Gitxsan and were steamed or boiled into a kind of jam or cooked and served with oolichan grease. They were also mixed with black huckleberries in berry cakes and these were prized delicacies at feasts. The bark and roots were boiled and the infusion was drunk as an emetic or purgative.
Warning: CAUTION: The stems, roots and foliage are poisonous or toxic. (Traditional Plant Use) Could cause nausea if eaten raw. (Joanna Clark)
Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Fragrant Flowers: yes
Attracts: Hummingbirds

Find Seed or Plants

Find seed sources for this species at the Native Seed Network.

View propagation protocol from Native Plants Network.

From the National Organizations Directory

According to the species list provided by Affiliate Organizations, this plant is on display at the following locations:

Native Seed Network - Corvallis, OR


Bibref 841 - Native Alternatives to Invasive Plants (2006) Burrell, C. C.

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Recommended Species Lists

Find native plant species by state. Each list contains commercially available species suitable for gardens and planned landscapes. Once you have selected a collection, you can browse the collection or search within it using the combination search.

View Recommended Species page

Additional resources

USDA: Find Sambucus racemosa in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Sambucus racemosa in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Sambucus racemosa


Record Modified: 2007-01-01
Research By: TWC Staff

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