Thursday, September 24, 2009

Preserving Time~And Elderberries!

Dear Friends,

A happy day to you! We're so glad you popped by, and thankful for your ongoing friendship.

We have had a couple of frosts this past week, so have been scurrying to save what we can of the tomatoes, squash, etc. Then the neighbors called to say we could have their extra beets, corn, and plums that they couldn't use, on top of gallons of hawthorn berries and elderberries that we had just picked the day before! We remind ourselves of the bees that are scurrying to suck the last drops of nectar out of the flowers before winter.

After tediously processing hawthorn berries (They have to be simmered with water, then pressed through a jelly bag to make syrup), we are grateful to be processing elderberries now~

Elderberries grow into trees of considerable size.

There are lots of elderberries in Wolverine Canyon this year.

They have little, easily-eaten seeds and are easy to dry whole in the dehydrator, to be used later as a cold and flu preventative. They are also easily juiced in a Green Star or other high-quality juicer. We like to eat them raw, too, although they can cause digestive upset while still in the green stage.

Elders and Hawthorns grow together in the hills.

Here is an article that my father wrote about elderberries back in the 1960s. If you live where there are wooded country roads, it would be well worth your time to search out these wonderful trees and partake of their bounty. Swine Flu scare, begone! :)

Till next time,




  1. Oh, dear! Autumn has really arrived at your place with frost already! Yes, a busy time gathering up the last of the bounty for winter stores!
    Thank you for the post on Elderberries. I have heard of a tea or drink that can be made of them but am always afraid I will pick the wrong thing! I have heard, too, that there are two kinds of elder trees ~ one good and one bad. Is that true? How does one know the difference?
    I will be keeping my 'eyes peeled' for elder trees in our area.

  2. Wow you are so busy but how wonderful it all sounds. And what lovely treats you will be able to enjoy through out the winter. I definitely need to pick up some books on the basics of gathering like you do. Foraging for Dummies?? do they make that lol!! Thanks for sharing your harvest I can't wait to get settled again and enjoy such wonderful things like making jam and such! Love the pictures....Blessings Heather

  3. Marqueta,

    Que lindo que Dios te ha puesto en un sitio que puedes caminar y encontrar abundancia!

    Yo nunca he probabo elderberries. Como saben?

    Aqui todavia no hemos tenidos frio ~ mis tomates todavia estan dando fruta ;-)

    Gracias por compartir to lindo dia!

    con mucho carino,

    lady m

  4. Never tried hawthornes . I'll have to check into that. Was lucky enough to find a stand of red currant bushes the other day when out foraging. Makes the prettiest jelly!


  5. wow, I can't imagine frost ;O)
    Though that wouldn't mean much since I speak from the sunny south.

    I love the pictures you posted. How lovely it must be to live so close to country side and hills.

    much blessings, Deanna

  6. Hooray, and amen! (RE: that last line about the "swine flu scare". My Mom was just commenting on how out of proportion it seems to all have become, seemingly, by the media's design. Personally, I've been using multivitamins, "ekanasia", and Korean ginseng tablets.

  7. How wonderful to be gathering your harvest ~ I long for land of my own to garden... I hope someday ~

    How wonderful to be able to travel to the mountains to find berries. You have inspired me to start looking around here to see if there is anything around here that I can go in search of to preserve. I would like to find an apple orchard too... but I have no idea of anything around here. I am still so unfamiliar with Utah. lol

    Anyway, I hope you are enjoying a lovely weekend. I am working on a letter to you! :)

  8. Dear Marqueta, I love the pictures and hearing about your berries -- Hawthorn and Elder. I have always wanted to make syrup, but have not done it yet. Thank you for all the information. :) I keep hawthorn tincture on hand but have been a bit afraid to use it lately because my BP and heart rate were so low! Once I adjust to my own new personal normal, I may have a whole new bunch of favorite plants. :)


  9. Dear Marqueta,
    It would be so lovely to go on an adventure with you foraging, gathering, harvesting from the woods, the gardens and the country roads. To make medicines, teas and syrups! Many warm blessings to you in this new season!

  10. Oh my goodness what rich pickings. Your girls trudging through the wilderness look like the first American pioneers...what fun you must have had. I'm very envious of the fruitfulness of your region.

  11. Happy Autumn Marqueta!
    Wow, I can't believe you have had frost already.
    I don't believe I have ever tasted an elderberry!

  12. frost-- definitely the signal for us all to scurry around preparing the rest of the fresh farm and wild goodness before the cold truly hits.

  13. Oh my! you've already had frosts! It must be wonderfully cool there :)
    You all are so busy, and the girls look so sweet outside!~


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