Edible Weeds 101: The Health Benefits of Stinging Nettles. Sign in with your online account. To support our efforts please browse our store (books with medicinal info, etc.). U. dioica has been used to address a range of ailments over the centuries. The tiny flowers are arranged in inflorescences that hang off the stems like catkins. The stem and underside of leaves are covered in small hairs that deliver a sting loaded with formic acid that can irritate skin for … Stinging nettle is distributed nearly worldwide but is especially common in Europe, North America, North Africa, and parts of Asia. The berry is similar to the red raspberry in color and shape but smaller (5 to 10 millimeters in diameter), seedier, and quite tart. Leaves, roots, and seeds have all been used medicinally, and each has different applications. Stinging nettle is often dried, powdered, and used as a spice, or cooked in purees, soups, and stews. Purple dead nettle is one of the plants covered in my gather + root online foraging course! So as annoying as those hairs might be, they are also very useful to positively identify this edible plant. Use stinging nettles in place of basil for pesto (freeze any extra in small glass jars) or as the base for a creamy spring soup. How to Eat Stinging Nettles. Learn how to identify, harvest, prepare, and eat this vitamin packed powerhouse! These nettle shoots can be steamed or boiled for a few minutes and eaten with a little butter and salt, or plain like I do. Making Bread Without An Oven – The Pioneer Way, Overlooked Repair Parts That Smart Preppers Stockpile, Stinging Nettles: The Delicious Spring Edible ‘Weed’ That Is Easily Tamed, Seed-Saving 101: Everything You Were Too Embarrassed To Ask, 5 Beneficial Garden Bugs You Should NEVER Kill, 8 Medicinal Herbs Our Ancestors Grew In Their ‘Home Apothecary’, Arnica: The Secret Native American Pain Reliever. Bittercress (Cardamine hirsuta) Bittercress. Share your nettles tips in the section below: featured nettles stinging nettles vitamins weeds. The Thimbleberry is part of the rose family and related to the raspberry. They also contain high amounts of vitamins A, B and C, as well as calcium, magnesium, potassium and zinc.Â. Already a Member? Young nettle leaves have a heart-shaped appearance and may exhibit a purplish tint. 2tbs organic coconut oil. Allergies: Tired of sniffling and suffering through allergy season? To preserve the quality of the nettles, do not rinse until just prior to processing. Get the latest on Natural Health and Sustainable Living with Mother Earth News! If you are trying to harness the benefits of stinging nettle root, you are going to have to dig a bit. Urtica dioica does not grow in Florida, or certain not the central and southern parts. Nettles contain the neuro-transmitters serotonin and histamine, which may be responsible for the weed’s pain relieving qualities. Nettles can also be used to treat other types of pain, such as sore muscles. For over 50 years, “The Original Guide to Living Wisely” has focused on organic gardening, herbal medicine, real food recipes, and sustainability. Stinging nettle chips: 4 cups (1 litre ) freshly picked stinging nettle leaves. Nettle soup is a common use of the plant in parts of Europe. In the spring, the young leaf shoots are harvestable and can commonly used within salads. The dried nettles make an excellent tea and can be crumbled and used as a flavoring herb for soups and sauces during the winter months. Home → Survival → Food → Edible Plants Nettles: There are several species of nettles. We look forward to going on this new journey with you and providing solutions for better health and self-sufficiency. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of Mother Earth News for only $12.95 (USA only). Detox: Because stinging nettles are a diuretic, they can be useful in cleansing and detox diets. Avoid when leave are tinged with purple. This article covers its use as plant food. Brush bare skin against this plant’s leaves or stem, and it will release that acid, causing a sting and welt that may last for an hour. Studies have shown stinging nettles to be effective at combating hay fever. Nettles can also be steeped as a tea. 1. Sign up below to get a free downloadable info sheet from the course, all about purple dead nettle. account? Look for plants that have eight leaves or less. Stinging nettle has an erect, squarish stem and serrated, simple, pointed, ovate leaves that are arranged in opposite pairs. Stinging Nettle has over 30% crude protein, lots of iron and 4 times as much vitamin C as an orange! But actually, the “dead” part of its name actually refers to the fact that this plant doesn’t sting like its cousin, the stinging nettle. The leaves can also be dried and be used to make an herbal tea or used in stews and soups. This plant is one of the most nutritious plants on the planet. Written by: Eron Drew Natural Health 0.WP-PrintIcon{margin-bottom:-3px} Print This Article. Watch the below video to learn how to identify both plants, how to handle them, what to use for cooking, and how to use as fertilizer. Nettles can be stored loosely in a plastic bag in the fridge for several days before use. The tastiest portion of stinging nettles is the new leaves at the growing tip. Nettle plants have a high degree of variation, and the name "stinging nettle" actually describes at least two species.  The leaves and stem of a stinging nettle plant are lined with fine hairs containing formic acid, which gives the plant its sting (and thus its name). 3. Look for plants that have eight leaves or less. Best wishes, Stinging nettle, or Urtica dioica, is a common plant that grows in the United States, Canada, and Europe.It primarily grows in damp, fertile soil. Add this edible weed to soups, pastas and other dishes. It has a worse sting than the U. dioica. Nettles are characterized by the following features: Remember to collect nettles only from pristine environments, away from roads or any source of pollution and contamination. These are best when harvested when they are around 6″ tall, I typically collect the top three or four leaf pairs. Nettles grow in dense clusters or groves near water and begin to emerge shortly after snowmelt in the spring. Stinging Nettles pack a huge nutritional punch. In the case of more mature plants, you will want to strip the leaves away from the stem altogether. Nettle ‘pudding’ or ‘porridge’ was eaten in parts of Britain as a ‘pick-me-up after the winter’. People with limited or no plant awareness can hate this plant since a careless stomp or thoughtless pull can result in a deep stinging sensation. don't have an online Edible Parts Only the leaves are edible. You consent to our cookies if you continue to use our website. The plant is common in herbal medicine, and young leaves can be cooked and eaten as a nutritious potherb. The modified hairs on the underside of the leaves and along the stem are used to inject this stinging solution into the skin. All of them are edible. However, we do have our own little stinging nettles as the article states, the Heartleaf Nettle. While holding the topmost leaf, clip the stem just below the first whorl of leaves, either with scissors or garden clippers. The impact of this crisis has no doubt affected every aspect of our daily lives. Add all the nettle leaves to a bowl. We use cookies to personalize content and ads, to provide social media features and to analyze our traffic. The leaves are edible at any stage of the plants’ growth. Stinging Nettle is a fantastic underused weed with excellent edible, medicinal and other uses. No body could tell it was not spinach soup, in fact they thought I was joking. All parts of the nettle plant are edible and are used by some practitioners today in herbal remedies. Avoid cutting too much stem material. Some people also use it within smoothies. Stinging Nettle identification of this bountiful wild edible is quick and easy. Urtica dioica is a PERENNIAL growing to 1.2 m (4ft) by 1 m (3ft 3in) at a fast rate. Did it more then once. The first edible part of the plant is the young shoots. First, it is important to properly identify this plant in the wild. Stinging nettle is dioecious, which means plants can have either male or female flowers. Melt coconut oil on low heat. Stinging nettle, (Urtica dioica), also called common nettle, weedy perennial plant of the nettle family , known for its stinging leaves. To harvest nettles, it is best to wear a pair of gloves and a long-sleeved shirt. Stinging nettle has some lookalikes. It is hardy to zone (UK) 4 and is not frost tender. When you are ready to eat your nettles, blanch them in hot water for five minutes and drain. This page only shows Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica) and Wood Nettle (Laportea canadensis).For contrast, two similar plants are shown at the bottom that are often confused with these species: Horse Balm (Collinsonia canadensis) and False Nettle (Boehmeria cylindrica). 1 teaspoon seasoning mix of your choice. Photo By Annie & John/Courtesy Flickr.Â, Vitamins and minerals: Nettles are an excellent source of protein. It’s best to use young leaves. Advice you’ll never hear from the mainstream media. Sometimes the leaves of stinging nettles are tinged purple. Urtica dioica, often known as common nettle, stinging nettle (although not all plants of this species sting) or nettle leaf, or just a nettle or stinger, is a herbaceous perennial flowering plant in the family Urticaceae.Originally native to Europe, much of temperate Asia and western North Africa, it is now found worldwide, including New Zealand and North America. Unfortunately, the financial impact of COVID-19 has challenged us to find a more economical way to achieve this mission. Whenever possible, harvest nettles during the early part of the spring after they have first emerged from the soil. Stinging nettles are a common forest plant found in Northern regions around the globe. You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues. Collect nettles in the spring when the leaves are young and tender. Wood Nettle is native to Eastern and Central North America whereas Stinging Nettle was introduced. (The blanching water makes a great tea or can be used a base for a vegetable stock, so don’t throw it out). nutrition, medicinal values, recipes, historical information, harvesting tips, etc.) When applied to fingers and other affected areas, nettles can reduce arthritic pain—so much so that 85 percent of participants in a study at the University of Plymouth in England reported that the pain relief from applying nettles was significant enough to endure the sting and welts caused by the leaves. The roots, stems and leaves of stinging nettle are edible. If you've ever been "stung" by a nettle during an outdoor excursion, the plants are probably near the bottom of the list of ingredients you'd like to add to your diet. Nettle can also be puréed and used in recipes like polenta, green smoothies, salads and pesto. Nettles have small, glassy hairs on the underside of their leaves and along their stems. In Chippewa, bepadji’ckanakiz’it ma’zana’tig, stinging nettle tends to make a bad impression on first meeting, as the name suggests.But there’s way more to this needled edible and medicinal plant. In manufacturing, stinging nettle extract is used as an ingredient in hair and skin products. Whenever possible, harvest nettles during the early part of the spring after they have first emerged from the soil. Leaves are opposing in orientation along the stem, and range between two and five inches in length, with serrated edges and a pointed tip. Three common ones are wood nettle (Laportea canadensis), slender nettle (Uritica gracilis), and dwarf nettle (Urtica urens). Stinging Nettle is not your typical edible weed. 1/2 teaspoon salt (if it’s no salt in the seasoning) Set oven to 150 degrees Celsius (300 degrees Fahrenheit.) Wood nettle differs from stinging nettle because it has alternate leaves. Stinging nettles (Urtica diocia) may sound intimidating, but once you get past their prickly exterior this classic spring weed is packed with good stuff that offers many health benefits. Slender nettle has less stinging hairs and dwarf nettle is smaller and more compact. Bittercress edible parts/uses: The leaves, flowers, and … Stinging nettles are covered with fine hairs containing formic acid. Photo By Olga Massov/Courtesy Flickr. For this reason, it’s necessary to wear gloves when collecting and handling nettles. The leaves can be steamed and cooked much like spinach. The shoots and leaves – were traditionally picked as a spring tonic. Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site! The stems tend to be fibrous. Regardless of how you use them, stinging nettles are sure to become a household favorite. At maturity, nettles can be more than five-feet tall. Clearly, stinging nettle is a plant with multiple purposes. I have done soup with it and it tastes really nice. Do you harvest and eat nettles? The leaves and stem of a stinging nettle plant are lined with fine hairs containing formic acid, which gives the plant its sting (and thus its name). Like to read more content, Join the Mother Earth Living Community Today! It is OK to harvest leaves from older plants, but they won’t be as tender or as sweet. Purple deadnettle is not only a wild edible … Modern research has revealed that nettle contains vitamin C and iron (see nutritional profile below) which explains its use as a spring vegetable. Stinging Nettle Identification and Harvest. Soaking nettle leaves in water or cooking with them as an ingredient eliminates the formic acid inside. They prefer rich soil near the edges of streams, lakes, springs and other sources of cool, clean water.  Nettles lose their sting once cooked. The young leaves are edible and make a very good potherb. ... Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica) Stinging Nettle is an herbaceous, perennial flowering plant. ‘Off The Grid News’ is an independent, weekly email newsletter and website that is crammed full of practical information on living and surviving off the grid. They can also be dried for winter use. Your friends at Mother Earth Living and Mother Earth News. The nettle leaves are extremely high in nutrients and make a delicious tea. Contact: Editor (at) OffTheGridNews.com Phone: 815-902-6086 2200 Illinois Route 84 Thomson, Illinois 61285. The sting of the nettle plant comes from a combination of formic acid, histamine and several other chemical compounds that the plant uses as a defense mechanism against browsing herbivores. Trees For Gardens, Orchards, And Permaculture, Mother Earth News Solar Prairie Home Study Plan. Arthritis: Nettles have been used for centuries to treat arthritis. Hi, thanks for stopping by. Nettles will begin popping up in early spring, and can be found all across North America. We welcome you to our sister publication Mother Earth News. Nettles will lose their ability to sting when they are properly prepared. please check out our Stinging Nettle PDF magazine. Male flowers can be yellow or purple, while female flowers are green and white. It is in leaf from March to November, in flower from May to October, and the seeds ripen from June to October. Identification of Stinging Nettle. The nettle has … Edible Uses of Purple Dead Nettle. The nettles now have lost their “sting” and can be used in place of spinach for most recipes, including lasagna or pasta sauce. Already a Member but Anti-inflammatory compounds and flavonoids found in this weed reduce the amount of histamine produced in an allergic response, meaning you’ll sneeze and itch a lot less than normal. Stinging Nettle also is a powerful medicine. What you sought in the pages of Mother Earth Living can be found in Mother Earth News. For more in-depth information (e.g. The stinging qualities of the nettles disappear. There are other plants with similar-looking leaves, but none of these have stinging hairs. Fortunately, cooking, steaming or drying the nettles takes the bite out of this weed. We will strive to be a useful and inspiring resource during this critical time and for years to come. Click here for more information. Their sweet flavor practically screams “springtime.” As a homesteader, I can no longer imagine life without them as part of our pantry. Stinging nettles ( Urtica diocia) may sound intimidating, but once you get past their prickly exterior this classic spring weed is packed with good stuff that offers many health benefits. The Chippewa name given refers specifically to the slender leaf subsp. Although they can be a nuisance for any person tromping through the woods in shorts, stinging nettles are an incredibly versatile and important wild edible. So how does one find, harvest and utilize nettles? They are often used as a substitute for spinach, and, in fact, have a taste similar to spinach with cucumber flavor notes. The tastiest portion of stinging nettles is the new leaves at the growing tip. Your friends at Mother Earth Living are committed to natural health and sustainable living. Most people in our society no longer view nettles as a plant of value, but for early homesteaders and Native f of the nettle was used for treating joint pain and inflammation. Once the leaves of a stinging nettle have been exposed to hot liquid for a couple of minutes or finely chopped in a food processor, the needles and stinging chemicals are neutralized and they’re safe to eat. How to Harvest Stinging Nettle Roots. To harvest nettles, just cut back the first two to three pairs of … If you have acccidentally over-harvested, try drying your extra stinging nettles in a food dehydrator. In foods, young stinging nettle leaves are eaten as a cooked vegetable. It has an earthy, spinach-like taste that it adds to dishes. This need not be a problem, nor a reason to avoid that particular patch, though it tends to signify that the plant is tired or stressed in some way, which can make the leaves a little bitter. Fast, All-Natural Pain Relief With No Nasty Side Effects! Stinging nettle is edible. The Young leaves are cooked as a potherb and added to soups etc. Stinging Nettle could be one of the most hated and most loved plants there is. The Heartleaf Nettle is edible At its peak season, the stinging nettle contains up to 25% protein, dry weight, which is high for a leafy green vegetable. With a bad reputation as a common weed, dead nettle (Lamium purpureum) is a greatly underrated wild edible.Moreover, its creepy name often puts people off. Stinging nettle is a weed with a variety of beneficial uses, from a food source to a medicinal treatment to nettle garden fertilizer. Cooking or drying them denatures the sting. In most cases, gloves are a good idea, as some contact with the leaves is likely to occur. They can be used in nettle soup or added to other soups and stews. But people that understand how incredibly valuable and worthwhile plants are can appreciate this true powerhouse of a being. Cooked nettles taste excellent with just salt, pepper and butter, or they can be incorporated into more extravagant dishes, such as this Potato Nettle Soup.