During the weeks of back-to-school time in the late summer and early fall, which coincides conveniently with the beginning of cold and flu season, dark violet-toned elderberries grow plump and ripe on their thick stems, begging to be pluck as they droop low to the ground. In keeping with the season, elderberry is a star student and makes an A+ antiviral plant. They act as both preventative and treatment; these tiny but potent purple beads of healing ward off viruses whether they are in the environment or have already taken hold within the body. For centuries, elderberries have received respect for their specific use in keeping a massive range of different viruses at bay.