Aug. 17, 2020

red elderberry, Sambucus racemosa

Called red because of the bright red berries - big bunches that grab your eye in late summer woods. But beware, all parts of red elderberry are toxic. The berries are edible only when cooked. Like so many readily identified toxic plants, this had many medicinal uses. This is var. pubens, which grows in every state except AL, AR, FL, KS, MS, NE, OK, SC, and TX, and all provinces except LB, NT, and NU. It is endangered in IL and KY, and presumed extirpated in RI. Mackinac Co MI, 5/26/17. Moschatel family, Adoxaceae.