This post is not about the depressed-looking squirrel. It’s about those sawn-off broom handles next to it, which are actually the woody stems of a blue elderberry, Sambucus caerulea, which I pruned down to near-nothing some time last fall.Blue elderberry. Tiny buds hold great promise.
The blue elderberry, unlike yesterday’s starring plant, the black elderberry, Sambucus nigra, is native to British Columbia. It grows on dry to moist , fairly open, low elevation sites from southern Vancouver Island and the adjacent mainland south to California (Pojar & MacKinnon, 1994). The more common species here near the coast is the red elderberry, S. racemosa pubens, var. arborescens, which has already flowered and set fruit. The blue elderberry is a slow starter; in march its only signs of life were these tiny buds. (Although, granted, in a natural setting it would not have been chopped down to nubbins six months ago.)
Branches galore, the flower heads are forming up top. It’s more than seven feet tall.
By late summer it will twice as tall, with bunches of powder blue berries swaying in the wind, and my neighbour will have lopped off several branches that dared lean over the fence. And the squirrel? Hopefully it found some happy nuts.