Elderberry is a wonderful plant, that grows as a medium sized shrub or tree.
It can be easily identified when the clusters of cream colored flowers are in bloom during spring. These flowers can be used as flavoring to make tea or other beverages.
The cream colored flowers will eventually be replaced by dark blue berries. These berries are highly prized for their medicinal value.
The berries can be eaten raw or dried, and can be used to make a cough syrup.
Native people use this plant for many things. Besides using it for food and medicine, the wood from this plant can be used to make instruments like flutes or clapping sticks. The young shoots are also great as twirling sticks for making friction fires.
This wonderful plant can be found growing along the banks of the Sacramento River or one of the local creeks, and even up into the mountainous regions.