Sambucus (Elderberry)

One wouldn’t typically consider a berry to be an herb but the elderberry plant with its high levels of anti-oxidants and vitamins is just what one needs to support the immune system from illness.




Elderberry, as it is popularly known, refers to several varieties of the Sambucus tree, which has clusters of white flowers and black or blue-black berries. The most common type being Sambucus nigra, also known as European elderberry or black elderberry.




With more than 30 types of elder plants and trees around the world the elderberry plant’s history dates back as far as 400 BC, and Hippocrates, the “Father of Medicine,” called the elder tree his “medicine chest.”

In folk and herbal medicine today, it is therefore no wonder that the elderberry is considered one of the world’s most healing plants.




For cultivation, the elderberry plant needs lots of nitrogen and sunlight. Once it flowers in late spring then you can expect the deep red purplish berries to bear.


Although my only experience with this particular herb has only been in the dried, syrup or gummy (don’t judge) form. I trust in its efficacy to support my body’s natural ability to heal itself.




FUN FACT: In Japan, the elderberry juice is approved as a natural colour additive.



IMPORTANT TO NOTE

Raw unripe elderberries and other parts of the elder tree, such as the leaves and stem, contain toxic substances (e.g., sambunigrin) that can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea; cooking eliminates this toxin. Large quantities of the toxin may cause serious illness.





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