Monday, 12 December 2016

The Mighty Elder - Elderberry, Elderflowers & their uses.

The Elder Tree has got to be my favourite, it is the witches tree, a great all rounder medicinally, makes fantastic sparkling wine (I can just stop here.... lol) and makes a fantastic jam too!

The Mighty Elderberry 

During August and possibly September (end of summer towards autumn) is the best time to collect your elderberries. Make sure to collect them when they are deep purple up to the point of almost being a prune is best, but you may not even get that chance if the birds have anything to do with it.

My Autumn Harvest

Elderberries have been used for centuries as a healer, from improving eyesight colds, flu, cough, cholesterol, nerve pain, inflammation, sinus issues, constipation, chronic fatigue and even cancer. 

Its antioxidant levels are through the roof, it is a real powerhouse to promote good health for the health conscious. 

14 Ways to Consume Elderberry:
  • Tea
  • Wine
  • Juice
  • Jelly and jams
  • Syrup
  • Ointments
  • Astringent
  • Infusions
  • Sprays
  • Lozenges
  • Pills
  • Liquid
  • Powder
  • Capsules

Cleaning Process in water with white vinegar

Here are a couple of homemade simple recipes below:

Homemade Elderberry Syrup
  • 3.5 cups cold water
  • 2 cups organic dried elderberries
  • 1 tablespoon fresh or dried organic ginger root
  • 1 teaspoon organic cinnamon powder or 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 cup raw honey

Cleaned and any green berries removed

  1. Pour water into saucepan and add elderberries, ginger and cinnamon.
  2. Bring mixture to a boil.
  3. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for about 40–45 minutes or until the liquid has reduced by about half.
  4. Remove from heat and mash the berries.
  5. Pour through a strainer or cheesecloth into a glass bowl. If you use a cheesecloth, make sure to squeeze out the juice.
  6. Add honey and stir until well-combined.
  7. Bottle final product in a sterilized glass container.
If you don't fancy making it, purchase yours ready made here

Elderberry tea is another great option. You can either buy teabags or you can purchase dried berries or flowers and make a tea by combining one tablespoon of berries or flowers with eight ounces of water.

scoop out to dry in a dehydrator or oven

Elderberry gummies

1 cup elderberry syrup
½ cup hot water (not boiling)
¼ cup Gelatin powder
1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil for greasing pan
Glass container or silicon molds

  • Grease molds or glass pan with coconut oil to prevent sticking.
  • Place ¼ cup of cooled elderberry syrup in a 2 cup measuring cup and add gelatin powder.
  • Quickly whisk together to temper the gelatin powder.
  • Add the ½ cup of hot (not boiling) water and stir quickly until smooth
  • Add the rest of the elderberry syrup and stir or whisk until completely smooth.
  • Pour in to molds and put in fridge for 2 hours or until completely firm.
  • Pop out of molds and store in air tight container with parchment paper between layers.
  • Take daily as needed to avoid flu or take every few hours to help beat the flu faster.
  • Will last up to a week in the fridge in an air tight container.

History of Elderberry

Historically, elderberry is known as a cure-all and has been called “the medicine chest of country people.”
The Romans created hair dye from the juice. The wood of an elderberry tree is fine-grained so it polishes easily and has been used historically to make combs, toys, skewers for butchers, pegs for shoemakers and needles for weaving musical instruments.
Native Americans used the plant for healing through medicines, foods, beverages, charms, ceremonial items, inks, dyes, body paint, jewelry, hunting whistles and musical instruments.
During the 1995 Panama flu epidemic, the government employed its use to fight the flu. The berry’s juice greatly reduced the time of the flu as well as the severity, thus helping end the epidemic.

Elderberry Precautions and Possible Interactions

Ripe, cooked berries of most of the Sambucus species are edible. However, you should not consume raw berries or other parts of the plant since they contain a cyanide-inducing chemical. Eating uncooked berries can result in diarrhea and vomiting. Generally, commercial preparations don’t cause adverse reactions at recommended dosages.
Occasionally, elderflowers and elderberries cause allergic reactions. Discontinue use if you have a mild allergic reaction, and seek medical attention if you have a serious allergic reaction.
You should not give elderberry products to a child before consulting your pediatrician. If you’re pregnant or breast-feeding, don’t take it.
If you have an autoimmune disease, such as rheumatoid arthritis, ask your doctor before taking elderberry because it may stimulate the immune system. If you have any other ongoing health concern, speak with your health care provider before taking it as well. People with organ transplants should not take elderberry.
Elderberry appears to have few side effects when used properly for short periods of time (up to five days).
If you currently take any of the following medications, you should talk to your health care provider before taking any elder plant products:
  • Diabetes medications
  • Diuretics (water pills)
  • Chemotherapy
  • Immune-supressing drugs, including corticosteroids (prednisone), and medications used to treat autoimmune diseases
  • Laxatives
  • Theophylline (TheoDur)
Magickal uses of the elder tree:
Elder offers protection from hostility to the user and to the home from storm damage and other extremes of weather. It brings health, wealth and happiness, and especially marital joy to a new bride or groom. Can be used for Exorcism, Prosperity, Banishment and Healing
Planet: Venus

Element: Water

Symbolism: Judgment, Transformation, Death & Regeneration, Fate, The Inevitable

Sacred numbers:

Five: each elderflower has 5 petals, 5 yellow stamens, and 5 sepals which form a tiny green star.

Thirteen: Elder is associated with all superstition surrounding the number 13.

The leaves and berries are used for protection and in breaking spells that were cast against you or to undo spells of evil intent. Growing an elder in your garden will protect your property from misfortune and harm. In Europe they planted elder in cemeteries to keep away the evil spirits.

Elder Flower wine in the making, for drinking and spellcasting.

To purchase your elderberries and elderflowers to make any of the above you can find them instore here
For more herbal items please visit instore at

If you would like any of my recipes not mentioned here, please comment below and I will email it to you direct.... After all caring is sharing :) 

The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. The purpose of this website is to promote broad consumer understanding and knowledge of various health topics. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or treatment and before undertaking a new health care regimen, and never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website.

As always please do your own research. 

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