image

Elderflower season: 5 reasons to go foraging for the flowers right now

Whether you live in the city or the countryside, now’s the best time to get harvesting

If you’re a keen gardener who knows their carnations from their chrysanthemums, you’ll probably already know that the start of summer marks the arrival of elderflowers.

These characteristically fragrant blooms can be found dotted in hedgerows and hanging from elder trees between the months of May and August.

Not only do the delicate white flowers make for a gorgeous photograph on a sunny day, but they’re one of mother nature’s free ingredients, and they can be foraged to make all manner of delicious recipes.

Here are just a few reasons to throw on some gardening gloves, grab your old Tupperware and start picking…

You can make cordial

Homemade elderflower cordial is a fresh and fragrant drink that makes for a delicious, non-alcoholic alternative to sipping on a glass of wine on a balmy summer’s afternoon.

The recipe is super simple and involves heating sugar, water, lemon zest and the picked flowers on the stovetop.

As elderflowers can often be found in local parks, woods and even roadsides, you don’t need to live in the countryside to start bottling your own batches – just make sure you can positively identify the plant before you pick it.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Jayne Richmond (@jaynerichmond)

It gets you outdoors

Countless studies have found that spending time in nature is good for our wellbeing. Known as ecotherapy, many people swear by the power of foraging for holistically soothing stress and easing issues like depression and anxiety.

Being outside in the fresh air also increases your exposure to sunlight too, which encourages your body to produce higher levels of mood-boosting vitamin D.

Water Sunset GIF by Living Stills - Find & Share on GIPHY

 

You can deep fry it

If you’re someone who loves an afternoon snack, you could try your hand at making elderflower fritters.

Light, golden and crunchy, it’s as easy as whisking egg, flour, sparkling water and sugar, dipping the flowers into the batter and then frying them on a high heat. Serve them with iced tea for a refreshing treat.

It can upgrade your afternoon bath

Love going for a leisurely soak? Hanging a muslin bag of elderflower heads under your taps as you draw your bath, infuses the water with the glorious scent of summer.

Some herbalists also believe that elderflower has natural skin soothing and cleansing properties too, thanks to its astringent nature.

It makes for a good day out

If you’ve already spent a small fortune at pubs, restaurants and other local spots that have recently reopened, foraging is a great sunny day activity that won’t give your bank account a further beating.

Whether you head out with family and friends, or go for a solo forage, there’s a great satisfaction that comes with discovering edible riches right on your doorstep.

The following two tabs change content below.

The Press Association

News from the Press Association - the national news agency for the UK and Ireland

Leave a Comment!

Not a member?

You need to be a member to interact with Silversurfers. Joining is free and simple to do. Click the button below to join today!

Click here if you have forgotten your password

Community Terms & Conditions

Content standards

These content standards apply to any and all material which you contribute to our site (contributions), and to any interactive services associated with it.

You must comply with the spirit of the following standards as well as the letter. The standards apply to each part of any contribution as well as to its whole.

Contributions must:

be accurate (where they state facts); be genuinely held (where they state opinions); and comply with applicable law in the UK and in any country from which they are posted.

Contributions must not:

contain any material which is defamatory of any person; or contain any material which is obscene, offensive, hateful or inflammatory; or promote sexually explicit material; or promote violence; promote discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age; or infringe any copyright, database right or trade mark of any other person; or be likely to deceive any person; or be made in breach of any legal duty owed to a third party, such as a contractual duty or a duty of confidence; or promote any illegal activity; or be threatening, abuse or invade another’s privacy, or cause annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety; or be likely to harass, upset, embarrass, alarm or annoy any other person; or be used to impersonate any person, or to misrepresent your identity or affiliation with any person; or give the impression that they emanate from us, if this is not the case; or advocate, promote or assist any unlawful act such as (by way of example only) copyright infringement or computer misuse.

Nurturing a safe environment

Our Silversurfers community is designed to foster friendships, based on trust, honesty, integrity and loyalty and is underpinned by these values.

We don't tolerate swearing, and reserve the right to remove any posts which we feel may offend others... let's keep it friendly!