vernal pool


Common Elder

Common Elder

Common Elder
Sambucus canadensis
Grieve has pages on common elder, of Sambucus nigra: "Alpes (Proc. Amer. Pharm. Assoc., 1900) found undoubted evidence of an alkaloid in the roots of the American Elder, its odour being somewhat similar to that of coniine and also suggesting nicotine. This alkaloid was evidently volatile. It appeared to be much less abundant in the dried roots after some months keeping. The fresh root of has been found extremely poisonous, producing death in children within a short time after being eaten, with symptoms very similar to those of poisoning by Hemlock." The number of pages and wealth of information make it worth checking. Beryl says: "The magickal power of Elder is most potent, and as a result much of the lore treats Elder with warning."

***~ WARNING ~***

Foster and Duke say of the elderberry: "WARNING: Bark, root, leaves, and unripe berries TOXIC; said to cause cyanide poisoning; severe diarrhea. Fruits edible when cooked. Flowers not thought toxic, eaten in pancakes and fritters." Hutchens says "The European Elder, though larger than the American, is in general characteristics and properties similar."
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