How to make an immunity booster: Elderberry syrup

Community, by definition, is a feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals (Oxford Languages). Before our population grew and spread out so rampantly, we dwelled in small villages, working harmoniously, to create a system of alliance. Every necessity from food, to building, to crafting, to caring became balanced responsibilities dispersed amongst the people.

Our society has slowly drifted from more indigenous habits to say, more virtual manners. It is inspiring to see Ryan Xavier, founder of GoGalora, connect these two concepts to rekindle the significance of supporting one another. Bringing back the intimacy of community will help solve problems with an area’s unity/division, economy, ingenuity, politics, you name it! It is time for communities to acknowledge the population as one as we relearn to provide for one another.

My name is Sydney Ripple. I am the founder and owner of herbal apothecary, Wilderbliss Botanicals in the heart of the Ozark Mountains. My business is established through notions of reconnecting with the environment, resourcefulness, and sustainability. My products consist of mostly wild foraged, homegrown, or locally obtained ingredients. With GoGalora, I am thrilled to experience the participation of my community. I am anxious to purchase and trade with my neighbors to continue formulating my products that I can return right back to them. Wilderbliss Botanicals hopes to contribute to this new renaissance of coming together to share, teach, and learn.

In light of sharing, I’m happy to teach you all how to make a basic elderberry syrup. Elderberry is notorious for its immune boosting properties. Elderberry is also antiviral and is rich in antioxidants. It has become a staple remedy for supporting the body during cold and flu season. Where I reside, Elderberry trees are abundant in the wild. They are also easily propagated. Several varieties of elder trees can be found throughout the United States. A handful of farms in my area grow them commercially. A lovely woman in my town has offered to let me harvest from her elder tree. If you are foraging for wild elderberries, be 100% sure of identification. I will also stress that you should harvest sustainably and be sure they are coming from an area free of pesticides. If you cannot find elderberries locally, there are numerous online suppliers you can source them from.

Basic Elderberry Syrup:



1 1⁄2 cups fresh elderberries (3 cups dried) 2 1⁄2 cups water

1 inch knob of fresh ginger (1 tsp. dried)

1⁄2 tsp. ground cinnamon (1 stick of cinnamon)

1⁄4 tsp. ground cloves

1⁄2 fresh lemon

1 cup raw honey

Optional: Brandy or Vodka

  1. Combine berries, water, and spices in a pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes.
  2. Strain through a fine filter. Be sure to squeeze out all the juice from the berries. Return the liquid back to the pot and place on the stove.
  3. Simmer on low heat until liquid is reduced by half, about one hour.
  4. Remove from heat and allow to cool until slightly warm.
  5. Add 1 cup of raw honey and stir until dissolved. (If the liquid is too hot, the heat will kill the enzymes found in honey.)
  6. Store in a refrigerator.
  7. You may add 1 cup of alcohol, such as brandy, to prolong the shelf life. The syrup will last about one month in the refrigerator without the alcohol, or six months with it. 

Thank you to Sydney for sharing this recipe! It sounds incredible and I’m going to try making it myself sometime soon. I highly recommend looking at Sydney’s listings with Wilderbliss Botanicals, especially if you are in northwest Arkansas! She has several tinctures, salves, and the lip balms that I have linked to above. They are all worth checking out. 

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