Dining on Elderberries

How about becoming a bee? Would that be nice? And you can! Rather than wait for berries and be a, gasp, wasp, with zing and a sting in September and people hanging bags of water over their doorways to try and keep you away, you can dine on elderberry flowers in June and even beat the starlings to it. Here’s the bush that’s scenting up my yard and making me buzzzzzzzzzzzz…

Red Elderberry in Full Sproing

One bush = 12 dozen flowers. Can you imagine an orchard of these things? A vineyard?Traffic would stall, mind you. All that sweet scent would make the drivers swoon. 

Elderberry juice, champagne, syrup, and fried elderberry flowers dipped in batter. It’s tantalizing, eh! Here’s recipe for Elderberry syrup, complete with lots of lovely pictures and a copper pot to die for. And here’s one for dipping the little beauties and frying elderberry blooms up to a crisp.

Champagne in its Raw Form

We could call the bubbly we brewed from this Rip Van Winkle. Put a red cap on it. Pop!

You gotta ask: why do orchards in the Okanagan all look soooooo industrial? Why, because they’re mostly trying to sell a fruit that grows over half the planet. That’s right, apples. There’s a glut. But elderberries? I mean, they grow here without any attention at all. We could just, sort of, work with that, right?

Does the Future Look Like This?

240 Blooms per plant in the fifth year, 363 plants per acre, makes for 87120 blooms per acre. A ten acre elderflower orchard could produce 871200 flowers.

You’d just have to wear a bee suit to pick the things, that’s all. Bzzzzzzz.

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