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Cottagekaren's Garden

Sambucus nigra 'Serenade'

Position: full sun or partial shade
Soil: moderately fertile, humus-rich, moist, well-drained soil
Rate of Growth: average to fast
Flowering period: June
Hardiness: fully hardy

Each spring, the handsomely dissected foliage of this new, Welsh-bred elder, emerges pinkish red. Clusters of white flowers appear in early summer, around the same time as the foliage turns yellow-green. The flowers are followed in autumn by black fruits, which are particularly attractive to birds, and around the same time, the foliage turns magenta-scarlet, putting on another great show before it is shed for winter. This colourful and easy to grow shrub makes an eye-catching addition to the garden, and can also be used to make an informal screen or hedge.

Garden care: To achieve the best foliage effect cut back to ground level each year in early spring and apply a generous 5-7cm (2-3in) mulch of well-rotted garden compost or manure around the base of the plant

Photos of this plant

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