Black lace elderberry

Asked June 5, 2018, 9:32 AM EDT

Hi, I have two black lace elderberry shrubs that are both three years old. One is in part shade, one full sun. Each year, they get new shoots and leaves, but only from the very bottom of the old stems, so they’ve never grown beyond the size they were when planted. You can see the old stems with no leaves in the pictures. There are buds all along the old stems, but they look dry/shriveled and never plumped or anything during the spring. The one in part shade has always sent up more new growth than the one in full sun. Why might this be happening every year? Is there anything that can be done so that they will send out new growth from the old stems next year? Thank you!

Hennepin County Minnesota

1 Response

They should take off this year as they have had time to recover from transplantation. I would not have expected them to grow much the last two years. They require well drained soil so only water if the ground is dry to a depth of 2 inches but don’t let the soil dry out more than that if you want good growth. If the leaves are paler than they should be put one tablespoon of vinegar in a gallon of water once a month and use it to water the shrubs.