Elderberry plants (Sambucus) are very versatile and growing them can offer many benefits. The fragrant flowers can be used to make elderflower cordial and fizzy 'champagne' and the dark black berries can be made in to wine, jam or jelly. Elderberry plants are not just grown for their fruit - there are now several varieties that have dark purple leaves and pink-white flowers, making them highly valued ornamental plants. They naturally form large multi-stemmed bushes but can be pruned to reduce their size. Elder is tolerant of most soil conditions but will do best in a moist but well-drained soil and should be planted in full sun or partial shade. The plants are very hardy and flower in May after the risk of frost has passed. Elderberry plants are supplied in pots and are available throughout the year.