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Green Alder vs Black Elderberry

Alnus crispa

Sambucus nigra ssp. canadensis

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Green Alder
Black Elderberry

Green Alder is a cold hardy, native shrub. It is often planted on infertile sites so it can fix nitrogen from the air and improve the soil quality.

Green Alder is known for its smooth grey bark and attractive shiny green leaves; it is commonly used in reclamation.

Black Elderberry is a deciduous shrub native to eastern North America. You can plant this shrub in moist areas and it will help stabilize your soil. You can also use it on rural properties anywhere you'd use a lilac.

Warning: the seeds, stems, leaves, roots, and uncooked berries of the Black Elderberry are poisonous to humans when eaten in quantity. You should cook the berries to make them safe for human consumption.

GREEN ALDER QUICK FACTS

BLACK ELDERBERRY QUICK FACTS

Zone: 1a
Zone: 3a
Height: 7 m (23 ft)
Height: 3 m (10 ft)
Spread: 3 m (10 ft)
Spread: 2.4 m (8 ft)
Moisture: any
Moisture: normal, wet
Light: any
Light: any
Fuzz/fluff: yes
Catkins: yes
Berries: black
Flowers: fragrant, white and showy
Bark: gray brownish with rigid bumps
Growth rate: fast
Growth rate: medium
Life span: 50 years
Life span: short
Maintenance: low
Maintenance: low
Suckering: high
Suckering: medium
Pollution tolerance: medium
Pollution tolerance: high

In row spacing: 0.9 m (3 ft)

Between row spacing: 5 m (16 ft)


Toxicity: leaves, stems, and uncooked berries are poisonous to humans

Other Names: mountain alder, sitka alder
Other Names: american black elderberry, american elderberry, canada elderberry, common elderberry


Ships To Canada: yes
Ships to USA: no
Ships To Canada: yes
Ships to USA: yes