Golden Elderberry Bush

Availability: Out of stock

Get gilded with the Golden Elderberry Bush (Sambucus canadensis 'Aurea') and enjoy a fast-growing shrub with several ornamental features that set it apart from your typical American Elderberry bush! But these chartreuse beauties retain their native rugged nature, hardiness, adaptability, and vigorous growth!

The foliage features a handsome, yellow to golden-green hue that will not fade throughout the growing season! In late spring or early summer the fine-textured foliage will soon be festooned in large fragrant clusters made up of star-shaped tiny florets massed together to form flat-topped bouquets! These pollinator-friendly landing pads add a lacy accompaniment to the lively foliage!

As summer progresses into fall, red drupes ripen, awaiting your harvest. The edible fruit makes outstanding jam, syrup, and wine or can be left on the shrub for the nutritional value it holds for songbirds and wildlife! Plus the flowers and fruit retain the American Elderberries medicinal value, prized for its ability to help fight colds and flu!

The Golden Elder Elderberry is a deciduous shrub with a broad, rounded shape and is tolerant of a variety of conditions! Very heat and cold-hardy throughout the USDA planting zones of 3 to 9, Elderberry bushes are fantastically adaptable and versatile! Growing 8-10 feet tall and a bit wider, you can transform these larger shrubs into small tree-forms, or be pruned as small as possible to conform to your smaller property or courtyard!

Planting and Application:

Like a shiny new penny, the Golden Elder will look outstanding in your yard as a shrub border or grouped in a naturalized area as a covert edible landscaping plant! Your Golden Elderberry is lovely even when not in bloom or in fruit! A single shrub becomes a beacon and mass plantings become wildlife habitat, songbird shelterbelts, and showy informal hedges - Without the wait!

These vivid golden shrubs are wonderful specimens that brighten the mood of the landscape! The verdant hue mixes with greens and chartreuse foliage colors, stands out against dark evergreens, and shines in the sun garden! Imagine what they can do for your home's foundation!

The Elderberry bushes' adaptability means introducing brilliant yellow color in Rain Gardens, natural wetlands, and waterfront properties, but alternately in Rock gardens, and hard-to-mow slopes, parched hell strips, and eroding hillsides alike!

You'll love the golden privacy or screening, vivid landscape backdrops, and bright colors! It will feel like you've suddenly gotten the Midas Touch! Gold-leafed Elderberry creates both a fantastic focal point and backdrop for you and your guests to look at as you sit on your porch, deck, or patio - in lanterns or decorative terra cotta pots! Use consistently throughout the landscape to tie the look together!

As fantastic in large planters as 'Thriller' accents as they are planted en masse for low-maintenance landscape filler, Elderberry bushes have you covered! For a solid hedge, space them out 2-3 feet on center. For a looser, more relaxed look, increase the spacing to 3-4 feet. Measure from the center of one to the center of the next.

Incorporate yellow and white flowering perennials and Roses, other chartreuse and variegated foliage plants, and like-hued plants like golden-leafed Spireas, Tiger Eyes® Sumac, Fall Gold Raspberry Bushes, Golden Vicary Privet or other equally brilliant flowering shrubs!

  • Decorative Golden Green Foliage
  • Lovely Creamy White Flower Clusters
  • Showy Red Fruit For Humans & Birds
  • Incredible in Cut Flower Arrangements
  • Pollinator-Friendly Birds
  • Gilded Hedges, Focal Points, Specimen Trees & Container Accents

#ProPlantTips for Care:

The color of your Golden Elder foliage will be best if you plant it in full sun and these shrubs do their very best in moist, well-drained soils. Provide regular moisture access during their first year in your landscape, but once established can become pretty drought tolerant. Keep your shrubs stress-free by providing supplemental moisture during extended drought and heat, plus a 3-4 inch layer of mulch over their shallow root systems.

Keep it pruned for size, or allow it to grow to its full height and spread. Either way, you'll love the effortless good looks! Elderberry can take hard pruning, just remember to wait until after the flowers fade because Elderberry bloom on old wood. After the first year, cut it back down to 12 inches tall to develop a bushier plant. Every 3 years, you can hard prune to the ground in the spring to maintain its shape. To enjoy both flowers and fruit (that pruning unfortunately removes), it is recommended you instead renewal prune when dormant, removing 3-5 year-old canes back to the ground.

  • Full Sun Shrubs
  • Grows in Moist or Dry Conditions
  • Any Well-Drained Soil
  • Prune After Flowering/Blooms On Old Wood
  • Easily Pruned to Any Size After Flowering
  • Fast-Growing & Hardy

Overall, the Golden Elder Elderberry is a hardy shrub with a lot of ornamental interest, but requiring little or no care yet shines with a natural beauty all on its own! Order this fast-growing shrub today at Nature Hills Nursery!

Buying Options for Plants

Nature Hills sells a large variety of plants with several options available. Plants are offered in both potted containers and as dormant bare root without soil. Here is a helpful resource to understand your options as you create a beautiful landscape with help from Nature Hills.

Ever wonder what a larger plant will mean for your landscape? Container Sizes are really all about the age of the plant!

Seasonally, Nature Hills offers hand selected, high quality bare root trees, shrubs and perennials. Bare root plants are sold by height from the top of the root system to the top of the plant. Plants may be taller than the height minimums.

  • Popular sizes of select trees are 1 foot, 2 feet, 3 feet, etc.
  • Popular sizes of select bare root plants is 1 foot, 18 inches, etc.

Nature Hills Container Size by Volume

Keep in mind, specific varieties and different growing conditions can affect the rate at which plants grow. Variations in size may occur.

Young Plants to 18 Months
Size Volume
2"x2"x3" Ranges from .18 to .21 dry quarts / .198 to .23 dry liters in volume
4.5" Container Equal to .65 dry quart / .72 dry liter in volume
Sprinter Pot Equal to .63 dry quart / .69 dry liter in volume
4" Container Ranges from .31 to .87 / .35 to .96 dry liter in volume
6" Container Equal to 1.4 dry quarts / 1.59 dry liters in volume
1 Quart Equal to 1 dry quart / 1.1 dry liter in volume
5.5" Container Equal to 1.89 of a dry quart / 2.08 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x5" Ranges from .8 to 1.1 dry quarts / .88 to 1.2 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x6" Ranges from 1.0 to 1.3 dry quarts / 1.1 to 1.41 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x9" Ranges from 1.1 to 2.1 dry quarts / 1.2 to 2.3 dry liters in volume
4"x4"x10" Ranges from 1.7 to 2.3 dry quart / 1.87 to 2.53 dry liters in volume
Plants 18 Months - 2.5 Years Old
Size Volume
2 Quart Equal to 2 dry quarts / 2.2 dry liters in volume
#1 Container Ranges from 2.26 to 3.73 dry quarts / 2.49 to 4.11 dry liters in volume
5"x5"x12" Equal to 3.5 to 4.3 dry quarts / 3.85 to 4.74 dry liters in volume
Plants 2 - 4 Years Old
Size Volume
#2 Container Ranges from 1.19 to 1.76 dry gallons / 5.24 to 7.75 dry liters in volume
#3 Container Ranges from 2.32 to 2.76 dry gallons / 10.22 to 12.16 dry liters in volume
Plants 3 - 5 Years Old
Size Volume
#5 Container Ranges from 2.92 to 4.62 dry gallons / 12.86 to 20.35 dry liters in volume
#6 Container Ranges from 5.25 to 6.01 dry gallons / 23.12 to 26.42 dry liters in volume
#7 Container Ranges from 5.98 to 6.08 dry gallons / 26.34 to 26.78 dry liters in volume

About Plant Sentry™

Plant Sentry is designed to protect both consumers and the nursery trade from invasive plant pests and diseases. Sites that display the Plant Sentry protection badge are protected from consumers buying and nurseries shipping material carrying invasive pests and diseases.

This proprietary eCommerce software prevents the shipment of a restricted plant to each state. The Plant Sentry system includes a shipment certification program. The Plant Sentry Compliance Officer works closely with and each nursery or fulfillment center to ensure only compliant plants are sold to customers.

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Plant Sentry


To obtain a more accurate shipment time-frame, simply enter your zip code in the “Find Your Growing Zone” box to the right. Our plants are grown all over the country and lead time on items may be different because of this. Once your order is placed, you will also receive the specific shipment time-frame information as part of your order confirmation. Once an item ships, you will receive shipment notification and tracking numbers, so you can follow along while your plant travels to your doorstep. We use FedEx, UPS, or USPS at our discretion.

Due to winter weather we have put a hold on shipping to the areas shown below in grey. You can still order now and we will ship the plant to you during an appropriate time for your zone.

*If you have found your zone already, it will be highlighted in the table below.
Color Zone Times
3 Spring 2019
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Shipping Rates

At Nature Hills we handle, package and ship the products you order with the utmost care to ensure healthy delivery. Shipping and handling charges are calculated based on the tables below. Please note that some items include an additional handling surcharge, these will be noted on the item's product page.

From To S&H
0 - 19.99 24.99
20 - 49.99 29.99
50 - 69.99 34.99
70 - 99.99 39.99
100 - 129.99 44.99
130 - 149.99 48.99
150 - 150+ Approx 28%

Click here to see our full rates


Golden Elderberry Bush Is Suited to Grow in Zones 3-9
Growing Zones 3-9
More Information
Brand Nature Hills' Choice
Botanical Name Sambucus canadensis 'Aurea'
Type Deciduous
Mature Height 8 - 10 feet
Mature Spread 8 - 12 feet
Sun Exposure Full Sun
Soil Widely Adaptable
Moisture Moderate
Growth Rate Fast
Flower Color Creamy White
Foliage Golden Yellow
Fall Color Yellow
Harvest Time Mid Season
Pollinator Friendly Yes
Pruning Time After Flowering
Fragrant Yes