[NAFEX] Canadensis vs. Nigra Elder

Donna &/or Kieran holycow at cookeville.com
Fri May 25 08:30:45 EDT 2007

    I think that one difference is that the American elderberries leave "green goo" inside your fermenting vessels.  According to one NAFEXer I met, this green goo can be removed only with acetone.  He said nothing else worked.  I never heard of this with European elders.  I never made wine in England, but knew people who did.  
    I picked whole lot of elderberries one year in England, and a whole lot one year in Florida.  Both times I just boiled them up, strained and added lemon juice.  No goo in either case. It takes fermentation to bring it out of solution.  
    It's weird that we never see elderberries growing well in Tennessee.  I don't know if it's something missing in the soil or what.  You can hardly get more missing nutrients than in Florida soil.  But now that I think of it, the year we picked so many, they were growing along drainage ditches dug to drain land for development.  Newly dug soil in Florida contains some black peaty looking stuff, accumulated organic matter and presumably some actual nutrients. This disappears rapidly when exposed to the elements, leaving worthless "sugar sand".  
    I know they like it wet, but we've had wet years here in Tenn.  I do remember one clump of them along a certain road that grew and cropped one year.  Why there?   Perhaps they require high levels of organic matter to succeed?   There were a few wild ones on our property where dirt and tree roots had been piled when the land was logged.  They never made a crop, and I've never tried planting or cultivating any because of my observations concerning the lack of elders here.    Donna 
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