With its lacy dark (almost black) finely- cut foliage this Sambucus tends to fool most people who encounter it for the first time – most people think its a Japanese Maple! The good thing about this plant is it is extremely hardy, and doesn’t seem to care where it is planted, although the colour is best in full sun! Not only does this shrub have fabulous foliage, but also pale pinkish flowers in summer, followed by berries in autumn! You can of course make elderberry wine or jam from the berries – mine are left for the birds!
I have also grown this shrub in large pots, then transferred to the garden – which shows how hardy it really is, as my pots freeze solid in the winter! It will eventually reach a height of 6 – 8′ – which isn’t too big, but you can prune back hard if you wish! My soil is heavy and we get lots of rain, but none of this matters to this gorgeous shrub!