Dienstag, 3. Mai 2011

Plant of the Day (May, 3rd, 2011) - Sambucus nigra L.

Today's plant of the day, Sambucus nigra L., (in English known as “Elder", "Black Elder" or "Black Elderberry” and in German as “Schwarzer Hollunder”) is a beautiful shrub from the small family of Adoxaceae. Its a typical spring plant, because the flowering is during springtime.

S. nigra - habitus

Black Elderberry is a big shrub (between 2 and 7 metres or 6,6 and 23 feet) with umbel-shaped inflorescences. Each inflorescences consists of many small white flowers. The stamens are yellow. 

The foliage leaves are unpaired pinnate with five leaflets per leaf. Each leaflet is elliptical-shaped and has a narrow tip. The margins of the leaflets are serrate. The ripe fruits of Sambucus nigra L. are black, which has given the species its name.

S. nigra - pinnate foliage leaf

S. nigra is native to Middle Europe; it's one of Europe's most common shrubs. It's very popular in gardens, because it's very undemanding towards its soil and hardy towards frost. It likes sunny, dry places without too much competitors and sandy soils, which are rich of nitrogen. So this species can be found  also e. g. at wastelands or into wild hedges. I found this one in the neighbourhood of a small train station.

 S. nigra - infloresence

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