I put a couple teaspoons of the sweet dark pink liquid in two cups of tea and I was back to my health within two days. I got the elderberry tincture from Portland herbalist Nicole Pepper. I bartered with her, offering her some Oregon Grape root tincture I’d made.You can buy elderberry tincture at health food stores or you can make it yourself. Elderberry shrubs grow all over the world, especially in Europe, the U.S. and Canada. They grow up to 25 feet tall everywhere from forested riversides to waste places at elevations up to 10,000 feet. (You can find them as ornamentals in landscaping, too). The leaves have serrated edges. More on ID here.
To make the medicine yourself, you need to find the ripe berries in mid-summer through fall. If the berries are blue or black in color and are hanging in a cluster that’s facing downward, you’re good. If they are red and seem to be reaching toward the sky, however, abort the mission, because it means you’ve got a potentially toxic species on hand. And be sure to avoid eating any other parts of an elderberry of any species because the leaves, branches and bark contain cyanide. (Knowledgeable herbalists may point out that the cyanide can be medicinal in itself in small quantities for other conditions.)
As always, gather conservatively. Elderberry is an important food for nonhuman animals, including bears and bees, and it provides shelter for birds and small mammals.
*Mix one part berries with two parts alcohol solution in a glass jar
*Let sit in the dark for several weeks to cure.
-The alcohol solution should be 50% strength, which means use 100 proof vodka or brandy, or buy a stronger kind and dilute it down with water.
Elderberry is a medicine of the people. Spread the love — share this post with your friends and family.