When we moved here 2 years ago, I soon noticed a group of elderberry bushes in bloom just over a stone wall. It was being attacked by marauding vines and overshadowed by maple saplings. But I was determined to pick some elderberries. I remembered picking them as a young man and eating elderberry pie that my mother made.
But I soon discovered that elderberry season is short and there are competitors. The first year when I went to find berries there were none. I had been away on vacation on the key week and either the birds or the bears had finished them off. Same story the second year. So I made a more deliberate attempt to persecute the wild grape vines and clear out some overhanging maple.
This year, I found berries, lots of berries. Our vacation was earlier in the summer or I would not have because the catbirds which are very abundant here were upset when I started picking the crop they had already started to claim. Never fear, there will be plenty left for them. I volunteered to pick the berries off the stems and JoAnne made me a pie. Pictures of the process are below. What a pleasure to finally harvest what God had provided.