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An easy-care addition to the edible landscape. Wide clusters of creamy white flowers appear in spring, making wonderful components for bouquets or for dipping in batter and making fritters. If left on the bush, the flowers develop into bountiful bunches of tender, deep purple berries used in jams, jellies, pies, and wines. Being native to North America, these fast-growing bushes also appeal to wildlife, like bees and hummingbirds, as a food source. Cold hardy. Ripens in early August. Best pollinator: any other elderberry variety.


Bloom Color White
Fruit Color Purple
Fruit Size Large
Ripens/Harvest Early August
Shade/Sun Full Sun
Soil Composition Loamy, Sandy
Soil Moisture Well Drained - Average Moistness
Soil pH Level 5.5 - 6.5
Taste Sweet
Texture Soft
Years to Bear 2 - 3
Zone Range 4 - 8

Zone Compatibility

This Variety's Zone Range 4 - 8
My Hardiness Zone ?
The USDA hardiness zones offer a guide to varieties that will grow well in certain climates. Each zone corresponds to the minimum winter temperatures experienced in a given area. Make sure that your hardiness zone lies within the zone compatability range of this variety before ordering.

Size & Spacing

Mature Size

When your plant matures, it will be approximately 6 - 10' tall x 6 - 8' wide.

Recommended Spacing

We recommend spacing these plants 6 - 8' apart to ensure room for growth.


This variety requires another one for adequate pollination.

Cross-pollination by a different variety is key to its growing and bearing success. Plant one of these varieties within 50' for best pollination.

Tools & Supplies

Having the proper tools and supplies when growing your own can make the difference between a good harvest and a great harvest! Here's a list that our experts recommend for this variety.

Planting & Care

Learn all about how to grow elderberry plants in The Growing Guide. An entire section of our website dedicated to your growing success.

Shipping Information

Estimated Delivery Date

You don't pay until it ships.

We work hard to make sure that your order arrives at the ideal time for planting in your location. That's why we only ship living products during certain times of the year. Order now and your credit card won't be charged until your climate is suitable for planting success and your order is shipped.

Our Promise of Satisfaction

1 Year Warranty

Every order comes with our promise of satisfaction. If you aren't completely satisfied with your order, let us know within one year for a free one-time replacement or refund.

Questions & Answers

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Browse 13 questions Browse 13 questions and 38 answers
Why did you choose this?
Stark Bro's Store
I tried 2 Adams and 2 Johns elderberries in this spring. They did so well, actually produced some berries in the first year, I thought I would try a couple of different varieties to see which I liked best. My first elderberries, never raised before.
Jeff B on Aug 23, 2019
Native plant for my location
rick s on Jul 13, 2019
I tried 2 Adams and 2 Johns elderberries in this spring. They did so well, actually produced some berries in the first year, I thought I would try a couple of different varieties to see which I liked best. My first elderberries, never raised before.
Jeff B on Aug 23, 2019
recommended in a gardening article.
Rita F on Jul 26, 2019
Native plant for my location
rick s on Jul 13, 2019
I chose this variety for its dwarf or small size.
Laurette L on Jun 4, 2019
Childhood memories
Lenice W on Jun 1, 2019
This bush has great health benefits, berries make delicious medicinal jam for family and for gifting, and I have perfect growing location - lower side of a sandy hill as it adjoins a swampy area on the edge of woods. Wild elderberry bushes grow on sides of ditches around Hemlock Michigan so I???m hoping for success at growing 3 bushes on my property (Johns, Nova, and York). Plan to dig holes, put composted cow manure in bottom, fill with dirt/humus, top with wood chips. Can???t wait for berries!
Catherine A on May 17, 2019
for cross-pollenation to my johns Elderberry
Carmen M on May 11, 2019
I grew up with these trees as a kid and want them now in my home.
ladybirdgem on Mar 25, 2019
recommended for my area
CLAUDIA S on Feb 20, 2019
My daughter is slowly creating a fruit and berry farm in NE Oklahoma.
Cathey B on Feb 20, 2019
The Nova isnt supposed to be affected badly by partial shade
Danielle R on Feb 16, 2019
to pair with my York cultivar
Michelle D on Feb 6, 2019
I chose this plant because I can't grow blueberries in Colorado Springs and I wanted a dark berry for jellies. I'm hoping Elderberries do well out on the plains.
Yonge S on Feb 3, 2019
We purchased two of these plants a few years ago and they've done well in our Colorado climate and are easy to prune and manage in our small yard. The blossoms have a beautiful smell, we harvest the berries, and like the look of these plants. As advertised, they do grow fast, and need to be staked but are worth the effort.
Susan T on Jan 12, 2019
Already have the John's and Adams bushes. Wanted to add this to my collection to be used for making my own elderberry syrup as the stock of elderberry syrup is becoming harder to find and more expensive to buy.
Annelle M on Sep 22, 2018
I love the smell of the flowers
Bridget K on Feb 22, 2018
We love Elderberry jelly, syrup, and wine. Nova is a companion pollinator for York. And between the two we are going to satisfy those desires!
Marsha L on Apr 22, 2017
Fast grower and disease resistant
JADA U on Feb 18, 2017
Smaller size.
Susan A on Sep 30, 2016
Already have York and Adams, so adding this increases our homestead diversity!
Ben C on May 21, 2016
recommended in a gardening article.
Rita F on Jul 26, 2019
I chose this variety for its dwarf or small size.
Laurette L on Jun 4, 2019
Do you treat your plants with neonicotinoids?
M K on Feb 8, 2017
BEST ANSWER: yes, this is an important question. I have beehives so I will not purchase unless answered.
Is this a dog safe plant?
BuddinHealthNut on Nov 18, 2016
BEST ANSWER: Unripe elderberries contain a toxic alkaloid, as well as cyanogenic glycosides. The plant is listed on the Deerfield Veterinary Clinic and the Pet Education websites as being toxic to dogs.
How fast do they grow?
Laurie M on Apr 7, 2017
BEST ANSWER: Mine grew to about 4 ft the first year with 5 dinner plate size clusters of blossoms & then berries.
The second (this) year, it is over 6 feet with 15-16 canes, all with blossom clusters forming at the end of each cane.
Do I have to cook elderberries before eating?
Steph on Aug 25, 2016
BEST ANSWER: It is best if you do because of the small seeds. The flowers make wonderful fried fritters and the berries area historically know medicine for colds and flu. They make an awesome.e wine and syrup.
Would this grow well in an area with morning sun & fairly wet soil? Thanks!
Heather C on Sep 7, 2019
BEST ANSWER: I see elderberries growing wild in ditches all over my area (MN Zone 4B) so I don't think moisture bothers them much. They're also common in thick hedgerows facing every direction, so part sun is probably fine. I'd guess they might stay a little smaller in that case. My York is young but growing fast in the part shade of a large hydrangea, which it will eventually outgrow.
Do these spread by their roots?
Banny on Apr 6, 2018
BEST ANSWER: They root spread.
Do Elderberry plants have any thorns?
Judy D on Jan 22, 2018
BEST ANSWER: No thorns. They grow as a dense, multi branched small tree, similar to a serviceberry but much faster growing and much weaker wood. Terrific grower if they have soil that does not dry out.
Which are the best two varieties which do best in my 40065 zone?
Mary W on Mar 12, 2019
BEST ANSWER: These are all fine native American elderberries, and all will do very well in your zone. They just ripen at slightly different times, but taste similar and are all very easy to grow.
What is the best soil to plant in? Wet or dry?
Stan O on Jan 21, 2019
BEST ANSWER: Elderberries like well drained soil, with average moisture, meaning not too dry and not low/wet.
i read this Elderberry needs a pollinator and i only bought one. does this mean it will bear fruit?
Fred M on Jul 31, 2018
BEST ANSWER: No, it will not. This plant requires a pollinator, but of a different variety, as noted in the description above. The same variety cannot pollinate itself. York or Johns are both good choices.
Is Nova an American or European variety ?
Keith B on Apr 27, 2018
BEST ANSWER: It's a native North American variety.

Customer Reviews

4.7 / 5.0
20 Reviews
5 Stars
4 Stars
3 Stars
2 Stars
1 Star
Excellent Pollinator
I purchased this Nova Elderberry as a pollinator for two exhisting York Elderberry Bushes in my yard. Each year I watched the York bushes produce plenty of flowers but never any berries. The Starkbrothers web site indicated the need for a polinator of a different variety, this spring we had an abundance of fresh berries.
September 11, 2016
over 4 years ago
Fantastic healthy plants that are doing great!
Bought the pair last year and they are doing fantastic. Growing quickly and looking forward to some berries.
May 23, 2016
over 4 years ago
Not a very experienced gardener, but they are growing beautifully!
I ordered Nova and York elderberry bushes early last year. They grew about 4 feet tall the first year, survived a Wisconsin winter and are really taking off this year and looking really healthy! There are some berries beginning to grow already as well.
May 31, 2016
over 4 years ago
Nova elderberry
This plant is growing well. Two previous years I bought them and they didn't survive the winter. These were bigger. Thank you.
May 13, 2016
over 3 years ago
Great Elderberry
This elderberry is a rapid growth specimen, as well as very healthy looking. It had beautiful large flower clusters this spring.
June 28, 2016
over 4 years ago
My plants looked good for about a month and then they lost their leaves. Thinking maybe it was just some kind of shock or weather related I waited. They died, or seemed to. I waited until winter came and went thinking they would return, they never did
June 18, 2017
over 3 years ago
Nova Elderberry
My Nova elderberry plant arrived well packaged and looking healthy. It has now been in the ground for about 2 months and is producing a lot of new growth
June 22, 2017
over 3 years ago
Easy to grow. Super vigorous plant. It's already taller than me (and I'm not short!)
May 17, 2017
over 3 years ago
We received excellent plants and they have exploded with growth & berries! Followed the planting guide and have had great success!
May 3, 2017
over 4 years ago
Shooting up runners non stop, and it exploded with growth the first year. The secoond year it is doubling what it did year before
May 5, 2018
over 3 years ago