Ozark Encyclopedia – E – Elderberry

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Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Elderberry, Elder – Sambucus nigra, S. canadensis

Parts used: bark, leaf, flower, berry

Traditional uses: Berries used in formulas against chills and cold. Helps support the immune system. Infusion of berry used internally for rheumatism. Flower infusion used as a febrifuge and to sweat out a cold. Leaf infusion used to wash sores and prevent infection. Bark poultice used on sores, wounds, rashes, and other dermatological needs.

*** Cautions: Berries mildly toxic when unripe, foliage toxic in large quantities ***

Used in the “stick-notching” treatment for warts – “The stick-notching treatment used for many other ailments is also adapted to the removal of warts. A little boy near Hot Springs, Arkansas, showed me a green switch with four notches in it, tied to the end of an old wooden gutter; each notch represents a wart, he said, and as the water rushes over the notches, it gradually dissolves away…

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