The Elder has been known for centuries as a Guardian, a Healer and Sacred.
When I 1st spotted an Elder on the West side of my Garden, I knew there was a reason she was there and irritated my husband to no end to leave it alone. Every year we would have a little "Tiff" regarding him brush hogging the Fence line. Ive rubbed off on him a little bit and trust me, that is worth celebrating! Its taken 15 years to get my way and have him leave the elder patch alone. YAY ME!! Not only was the Elder protecting my garden (she blocks the harsh summer sun to the west of my garden), she was also offering her berries for healing. What I Didn't know, until recently, was that her flowers are a bounty all on their own. From my studies, I've learned that the Elder flower is a wonderful skin nourishing hydrosol, an aromatic infusion in skin loving oils, a fragrant drink and has antiseptic as well as anti-inflammatory properties.
SO, The Granddaughter and I thought it was time to make use of the huge bounty of elder flowers and try a distillation.
Gathering of the flowers for distillation.
We had a nosy visitor while we were de-stemming the flower heads. Bailey always has to come investigate what im doing at any given point in time. He is also in love with one special little girl.
I dont use dehydrators for herbs as ive noticed a lack of flavor in my cooking herbs when i used it before. Since we have started gathering and selling our herbs they are hung to dry in the Garage attic for a couple of days then bottled or bagged depending on the use. So, while we were interrupted with a family emergency prior to being able to Distill the Elder flowers, we weren't interrupted before we could de-stem the flowers for drying. Currently we have several jars filled with dried flowers and a combination of oils for later use. This pic is of Elder Flower infusing in Organic Jojoba.
Stay tuned for these products as well as the Hydrosols to be offered in our online store.
It needs noted that while the Elder flower itself is safe for consumption, the stems, twigs, leaves and roots are all toxic. I learned a LONG time ago that some people (me!) have super sensitive stomachs to things that are not good for me. So if you make the decision to drink any herb or hydrosol, pay attention to your body and how it reacts.
Another word of caution; while I've not seen any actual studies on this topic, I've read from several reliable sources that the Elder flower can lower blood sugar and should be carefully monitored if used by diabetics. Also, Id like to take a second to wish a Very Happy Anniversary to my Son and Daughter in Law Nick & Kayla Boggs!! They both are a true blessing!
Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
Corinthians 13:13 And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity. (love)