The North American Black Elderberry, Sambucus canadensis, became our passion when we were introduced to her by new friends from across the pond. When they saw the wild Elder growing in the fence line they stopped to give her a small bow and say, “thank you!” - we didn't quite understand at first, but we do now. All over Europe, elderberry has been cultivated for generations and is simultaneously considered a luxury and a necessity. Both the elderberry and flower are antiviral and antibacterial with antioxidant concentrations that make other fruit blush. Elder is hardy and abundant - a truly native species. In our time and place you will often find the Elder alongside a road, near a creek or tucked away in the woods. If you’re lucky enough to walk past the Elder in full bloom you will never forget the fragrance or the experience.
Take care of the soil first, and everything else will fall in line. We started with a hay field lined with oaks and palmettos. From the beginning we knew we had something special when we saw all the mason bees, hoverflies and predatory wasps in every imaginable color. We recognized the potential and started working to improve the habitat while taking the time to stop and admire the ecology surrounding us. Then we met Hyldemoer, the Elder Mother, the protector of her precious Elder trees. We too wanted to be the protectors of our farm and all that grew and lived there, so we named our farm after her and gave her the companions she would enjoy the most – the other life already in attendance and the many others who belonged there all along. We call all of them together “and Company.”
Next we wanted to share our farm with others by keeping it simple, and most importantly, stable. Synthetic herbicides or pesticides can't be used if that’s your goal. We looked for an approach enabling us to do our part to move local food production in a new direction. Elder ended up being the ideal focus for our farm and our vision for a sustainable, productive and naturally diverse space where we could share the results of our efforts to produce healthful food. We were awarded a grant to study the phytochemical concentrations of the many varieties of Elder we found and brought to the farm. In return for this help our commitment is to give back to our community and to be generous with the results of this work and the other fruits of our labor - all while keeping good Company in the orchard.
Our certification page can be found here: Hyldemoer + Co.'s CNG-certification. Certified Naturally Grown (CNG) offers peer-review certification to farmers producing food for their local communities by working in harmony with nature, without relying on synthetic chemicals or GMOs.
We chose CNG-certification because the peer review aspect gives us a chance to reach out to other CNG growers and share our experiences and hear theirs in return. There are many great farms out there, take a look at the CNG farms map and use it to get to know a local farmer in your area!
Please contact us for more information on BOTTLE RETURN, PRODUCT SALES, DELIVERY OPTIONS + UPCOMING EVENTS.