Stinging nettle, one of the earliest wild perennial greens, announces the arrival of spring. In areas with cold winters the plant will die down and return in spring. Plants are covered in small hollow hairs that produce a stinging sensation, irritation and discomfort when in contacted with skin; the stinging hairs can be neutralized by drying or cooking. It is covered with many small hairs that sting upon contact and are used as a defense mechanism to keep animals from eating it. Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica) illustration. 8 Nettles for ladybirds. (By: Prof. Dr. Otto Wilhelm ThomÃ© Flora von Deutschland, Ãsterreich und der Schweiz 1885, Gera, Germany). Fill peat pots or other growing containers with potting soil and plant one to three seeds per container. Binomial Name: FREE Delivery on your first order shipped by Amazon. Top leaves picked from the Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica) early in the season are my absolute favorite cooked green. Don't over do it, but they can handle more alkaline (opposite of acidic) conditions than most plants and there is little that is more alkaline than wood ash. Try our sprouts packs here with the 3-Day Independence Sprouts Pack. Nettle seeds are found on the female nettle plant (distinguished from the males by the droopiness of their flowers and somewhat frosty appearance). I found only a Swiss recipy that show how touse them cooked a little bit to add to salads. Be sure to check out our newest seed packs, available now from Heirloom Organics. When starting off Lamium indoors they should be started off about 10 weeks before due to be out out in the garden. In the fall, cut back all but the top 6 to 10 inches of growth, dig it up with plenty of soil, put in a plastic bag or bucket, and transplant to where you want it. eval(ez_write_tag([[580,400],'wildfoodshomegarden_com-box-2','ezslot_5',103,'0','0'])); Search Wild Foods Home Garden & Nature's Restaurant Websites: A beautiful crop of Stinging Nettles. In the resulting space, other flowers have room to grow. The tastiest seem to grow in damp, rich soils by river banks as soon as you can get them. Even the new growth later in June just does not taste right, and can be stringy. All Drawings Copyright Â© 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 David G. Mills except where noted. Your Email Address. Common nettle also requires long days to stimulate flowering. Nettle seed is used therapeutically both as freshly picked seed and as fresh nettle seed tincture. The stingers that defend the plant. Cover the seeds with 1/4 inch of soil, and be sure to keep the soil wet. Water, as necessary, to keep the soil moist. Once the leaves start to yellow in the fall, you can use the pair of hedge clippers to cut them back to about 10 cm (4 inches) high, leaving the stalks on the ground and cover with a layer of composted manure, compost and/or mulch. Nettle is fairly easy to grow and can be planted directly outside in the spring. You may also direct sow nettle greens in the garden. If planted in a spot it likes, each clump of it will grow more stems each year. A very common plant, the stinging nettle can be found growing in gardens, hedgerows, fields, woodlands and many other habitats. Another possibility is to seek out both male and female members of the same species in their native habitat along river beds and ditches, then strip them of the nettle seeds to plant in a garden. For nettle seed that I plan to feed to other people, I take the precaution of toasting it in a dry frying pan. According to Winston and Kuhn in their book, Herbal Therapy & Supplements, these terms can be defined as a: “Trophorestorative: An herb that nourishes, strengthens, and tonifies a specific organ or function. The promise is that Lamiums are fast-growing perennial ground cover or container plants that brighten partly sunny spots and produce charming flowers. It usually pops up each spring, and easily spreads after flowering and going to seed. Stinging nettle is distributed nearly worldwide but is especially common in Europe, North America, North Africa, and parts of Asia. I was surprised to read in your book Plant Medicine this caveat about nettles “Avoid internal use of stinging nettle products made of mature leaf (summer or fall) due to presence of tiny cystoliths… that may irritate the kidneys.” Is this right?? Just produces year after year links to buy seeds and roots of nettle seed for recreation but advise. 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