This section is from the book "Handbook Of Hardy Trees, Shrubs, And Herbaceous Plants", by W. Botting Hemsley. Also available from Amazon: Handbook of hardy trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants.
Corolla rotate. Stamens 5. Berry 3- to 5-celled; cells one-seeded. There are about ten species, widely dispersed in temperate regions. The name is from a musical instrument, in reference to the former use of the wood.
1. S. nigra. Elder. - There are several varieties of this common tree in cultivation, including one, laciniata, with the leaves deeply cut, and variegated forms of both varieties, and another with double flowers..
S. Ebulus, Danewort, is an indigenous herbaceous species with leafy stipules and smaller cymes, easily recognised as a congener of the commoner one. S. racemdsa is a South European species with yellowish flowers and scarlet berries. S. Canadensis and S. glauca are North American species rarely seen in our gardens.