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Vascular Plants of California
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Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea
BLUE ELDERBERRY


Higher Taxonomy
Family: AdoxaceaeView DescriptionDichotomous Key
Common Name: MUSKROOT FAMILY
Habit: [Perennial herb], subshrub to tree; hairs often stellate or glandular. Leaf: generally opposite, simple or compound, generally toothed; stipules generally 0. Flower: generally bisexual; calyx teeth or lobes [2]5; corolla small, radial, rotate, lobes [3--4]5; stamens [4]5, epipetalous; ovary +- inferior, chambers 1 or 3--5, 1-ovuled; styles +- 0 or 3--5. Fruit: drupe.
Genera In Family: 5 genera, 200 species: especially northern temperate, also South America, southeastern Asia, tropical Africa. Note: Incl in Caprifoliaceae in TJM (1993), and possibly in future.
Unabridged Note: Incl in Caprifoliaceae in TJM (1993), and possibly in future according to the Angiosperm Phylogeny Website (http://www.mobot.org/MOBOT/Research/APweb/welcome.html), which states, in part, "The whole lot might usefully be combined in a Caprifoliaceae s.l. (see also APG 2003), since similarities between the families are considerable and differences are mostly slight."
eFlora Treatment Author: Charles D. Bell, except as noted
Scientific Editor: Thomas J. Rosatti, Bruce G. Baldwin.
Genus: SambucusView DescriptionDichotomous Key


Common Name: ELDERBERRY
Habit: Generally shrub to small tree, deciduous; main trunk generally 0. Stem: pith large, spongy. Leaf: 1(2)-odd-pinnately compound; leaflets serrate. Inflorescence: panicle of cymes, terminal, generally +- dome-shaped. Flower: ovary chambers 3--5, ovules pendent; style +- 0, stigma lobes 3--5. Fruit: drupe, berry-like. Seed: 3--5.
Species In Genus: 20 species: temperate, subtropics some cultivated as ornamental. Etymology: (Greek: for stringed instrument made from wood of genus) Toxicity: Toxic in quantity (except cooked fruits).
eFlora Treatment Author: Charles D. Bell
Reference: Bolli 1994 Diss Bot 223:1--256
Sambucus nigra L. subsp. caerulea (Raf.) Bolli
NATIVE
Habit: Plant 2--8 m, generally as wide as tall. Leaf: leaflets 3--9, 3--20 cm, elliptic to ovate, glabrous to hairy, axis often bowed, base often asymmetric, tip acute to acuminate. Inflorescence: 4--33 cm diam, +- flat-topped; central axis generally not dominant. Flower: petals +- spreading. Fruit: +- black, densely white glaucous (appearing +- blue). Chromosomes: 2n=36.
Ecology: Common. Streambanks, open places in forest; Elevation: < 3000 m. Bioregional Distribution: CA-FP, GB, DMtns; Distribution Outside California: to British Columbia, Utah, New Mexico. Flowering Time: Mar--Sep Note: Variable, in need of study.
Synonyms: Sambucus caerulea Raf.; Sambucus mexicana C. Presl ex DC., misappl.
Jepson eFlora Author: Charles D. Bell
Reference: Bolli 1994 Diss Bot 223:1--256
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Botanical illustration including Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea

botanical illustration including Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea

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Citation for this treatment: Charles D. Bell 2012, Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea, in Jepson Flora Project (eds.) Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/eflora/eflora_display.php?tid=80587, accessed on October 16, 2019.

Citation for the whole project: Jepson Flora Project (eds.) 2019, Jepson eFlora, http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/eflora/, accessed on October 16, 2019.

Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea
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© 2015 Steve Matson
Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea
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© 2012 Neal Kramer
Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea
click for enlargement
© 2015 Neal Kramer
Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea
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© 2015 Barry Breckling
Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea
click for enlargement
© 2015 Neal Kramer
Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea
click for enlargement
© 2003 Steve Matson

More photos of Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea in CalPhotos



Geographic subdivisions for Sambucus nigra subsp. caerulea:
CA-FP, GB, DMtns
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CCH collections by month

Duplicates counted once; synonyms included.
Species do not include records of infraspecific taxa, if there are more than 1 infraspecific taxon in CA.
Blue line denotes eFlora flowering time.