Sambucus nigra ‘Eva’ BLACK LACE ™

purple cutleaf elderberry

Outstanding Qualities

Here is an exceptional shrub that makes a striking feature in the garden. Lacy black-purple foliage is the dramatic attribute of this recently introduced elderberry cultivar. Creamy pink flowers, which have a light lemon scent, stand out amidst the leaves in early summer and mature to dark black-purple berries later in the season. The clusters of fruit can be made into jam or wine as well as remain on the plant for birds to feast on.

Colors & Combos

Great Color Contrasts: silver, gold, chartreuse

Great Color Partners: purple, pink, burgundy

Culture Notes

This elderberry grows best in rich well-drained or moist soil, but will adapt to sandy sites or clay and tolerate short periods of standing water. The best and most vigorous growth will occur with regular watering and fertilizing, although it will tolerate more occasional watering during dry weather. Plant it in full sun for the best foliage color. This elderberry will tolerate light to open shade but the purple foliage color will be more muted. A light pruning in winter to remove dead and broken branches and older twiggy stems will keep it looking tidy in the garden. Vigorous growing plants can be cut to the ground every year or two to encourage robust whips of growth that will have the boldest foliage. .

© Richie Steffen / Great Plant Picks

Quick Facts

Plant Type: shrub

Foliage Type: deciduous

Plant Height: 8 ft. 0 in. (2.44 m.)

Plant Width/Spread: 8 ft. 0 in. (2.44 m.)

Hardiness: USDA Zones 4 to 7

Flower Color: pink

Sun/Light Exposure: full sun

Water Requirements: regular to occasional watering