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. The tiny flowers are arranged in inflorescences that hang off the stems like catkins. If you have acccidentally over-harvested, try drying your extra stinging nettles in a food dehydrator. Modern research has revealed that nettle contains vitamin C and iron (see nutritional profile below) which explains its use as a spring vegetable. So as annoying as those hairs might be, they are also very useful to positively identify this edible plant. They can also be dried for winter use. Add all the nettle leaves to a bowl. 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. The Thimbleberry is part of the rose family and related to the raspberry. There are other plants with similar-looking leaves, but none of these have stinging hairs. The stem and underside of leaves are covered in small hairs that deliver a sting loaded with formic acid that can irritate skin for … The leaves can also be dried and be used to make an herbal tea or used in stews and soups. Purple dead nettle is one of the plants covered in my gather + root online foraging course! 2tbs organic coconut oil. 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). However, we do have our own little stinging nettles as the article states, the Heartleaf Nettle. Sometimes the leaves of stinging nettles are tinged purple. We will strive to be a useful and inspiring resource during this critical time and for years to come. I have done soup with it and it tastes really nice. 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. nutrition, medicinal values, recipes, historical information, harvesting tips, etc.) 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. Edible Parts Only the leaves are edible. Your friends at Mother Earth Living are committed to natural health and sustainable living. They prefer rich soil near the edges of streams, lakes, springs and other sources of cool, clean water. It’s best to use young leaves. 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. The plant is common in herbal medicine, and young leaves can be cooked and eaten as a nutritious potherb. But people that understand how incredibly valuable and worthwhile plants are can appreciate this true powerhouse of a being. It has an earthy, spinach-like taste that it adds to dishes. So how does one find, harvest and utilize nettles? Photo By Annie & John/Courtesy Flickr.Â, Vitamins and minerals: Nettles are an excellent source of protein. The tastiest portion of stinging nettles is the new leaves at the growing tip. 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. 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. Edible Weeds 101: The Health Benefits of Stinging Nettles. The leaves are edible at any stage of the plants’ growth. The tastiest portion of stinging nettles is the new leaves at the growing tip. Stinging Nettles pack a huge nutritional punch. 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. Stinging Nettle has over 30% crude protein, lots of iron and 4 times as much vitamin C as an orange! Stinging nettle has an erect, squarish stem and serrated, simple, pointed, ovate leaves that are arranged in opposite pairs. Already a Member but 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. We look forward to going on this new journey with you and providing solutions for better health and self-sufficiency. You consent to our cookies if you continue to use our website. They also contain high amounts of vitamins A, B and C, as well as calcium, magnesium, potassium and zinc.Â. 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. Add this edible weed to soups, pastas and other dishes. When you are ready to eat your nettles, blanch them in hot water for five minutes and drain. Melt coconut oil on low heat. 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. 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. 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. account? In the spring, the young leaf shoots are harvestable and can commonly used within salads. Leaves are opposing in orientation along the stem, and range between two and five inches in length, with serrated edges and a pointed tip. Nettle plants have a high degree of variation, and the name "stinging nettle" actually describes at least two species. In most cases, gloves are a good idea, as some contact with the leaves is likely to occur. Avoid when leave are tinged with purple. Stinging nettles are a common forest plant found in Northern regions around the globe. The Heartleaf Nettle is edible Avoid cutting too much stem material. Stinging Nettle Identification and Harvest. At its peak season, the stinging nettle contains up to 25% protein, dry weight, which is high for a leafy green vegetable. In foods, young stinging nettle leaves are eaten as a cooked vegetable. The berry is similar to the red raspberry in color and shape but smaller (5 to 10 millimeters in diameter), seedier, and quite tart. Fast, All-Natural Pain Relief With No Nasty Side Effects! Trees For Gardens, Orchards, And Permaculture, Mother Earth News Solar Prairie Home Study Plan. Stinging Nettle could be one of the most hated and most loved plants there is. It is OK to harvest leaves from older plants, but they won’t be as tender or as sweet.  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). The young leaves are edible and make a very good potherb.  Nettles lose their sting once cooked. Get the latest on Natural Health and Sustainable Living with Mother Earth News! The nettle leaves are extremely high in nutrients and make a delicious tea. (The blanching water makes a great tea or can be used a base for a vegetable stock, so don’t throw it out). Some people also use it within smoothies. Look for plants that have eight leaves or less. To preserve the quality of the nettles, do not rinse until just prior to processing. The Young leaves are cooked as a potherb and added to soups etc. U. dioica has been used to address a range of ailments over the centuries. You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues. Young nettle leaves have a heart-shaped appearance and may exhibit a purplish tint. For more in-depth information (e.g. The shoots and leaves – were traditionally picked as a spring tonic. Learn how to identify, harvest, prepare, and eat this vitamin packed powerhouse! The nettle has … Clearly, stinging nettle is a plant with multiple purposes. Nettles will begin popping up in early spring, and can be found all across North America. Stinging nettle is distributed nearly worldwide but is especially common in Europe, North America, North Africa, and parts of Asia. Stinging nettle is often dried, powdered, and used as a spice, or cooked in purees, soups, and stews. Nettles will lose their ability to sting when they are properly prepared. Already a Member? To harvest nettles, just cut back the first two to three pairs of … Nettle soup is a common use of the plant in parts of Europe. Urtica dioica is a PERENNIAL growing to 1.2 m (4ft) by 1 m (3ft 3in) at a fast rate. How to Eat Stinging Nettles. Stinging nettle, (Urtica dioica), also called common nettle, weedy perennial plant of the nettle family , known for its stinging leaves. 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. What you sought in the pages of Mother Earth Living can be found in Mother Earth News. Nettles have small, glassy hairs on the underside of their leaves and along their stems. The stems tend to be fibrous. Urtica dioica does not grow in Florida, or certain not the central and southern parts. Stinging nettle has some lookalikes. No body could tell it was not spinach soup, in fact they thought I was joking. Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site! Nettles can be stored loosely in a plastic bag in the fridge for several days before use. For this reason, it’s necessary to wear gloves when collecting and handling nettles. Three common ones are wood nettle (Laportea canadensis), slender nettle (Uritica gracilis), and dwarf nettle (Urtica urens). The impact of this crisis has no doubt affected every aspect of our daily lives. The Chippewa name given refers specifically to the slender leaf subsp. Nettle can also be puréed and used in recipes like polenta, green smoothies, salads and pesto. Stinging Nettle is a fantastic underused weed with excellent edible, medicinal and other uses. 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. Stinging Nettle identification of this bountiful wild edible is quick and easy. Stinging nettle is dioecious, which means plants can have either male or female flowers. We use cookies to personalize content and ads, to provide social media features and to analyze our traffic. Wood Nettle is native to Eastern and Central North America whereas Stinging Nettle was introduced. Nettles grow in dense clusters or groves near water and begin to emerge shortly after snowmelt in the spring. At maturity, nettles can be more than five-feet tall. It has a worse sting than the U. dioica. Cooking or drying them denatures the sting. Do you harvest and eat nettles? Stinging nettle is a weed with a variety of beneficial uses, from a food source to a medicinal treatment to nettle garden fertilizer. It is hardy to zone (UK) 4 and is not frost tender. Contact: Editor (at) OffTheGridNews.com Phone: 815-902-6086 2200 Illinois Route 84 Thomson, Illinois 61285. Their sweet flavor practically screams “springtime.” As a homesteader, I can no longer imagine life without them as part of our pantry. The stinging qualities of the nettles disappear. Regardless of how you use them, stinging nettles are sure to become a household favorite. 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. In the case of more mature plants, you will want to strip the leaves away from the stem altogether. The roots, stems and leaves of stinging nettle are edible. Best wishes, 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. Studies have shown stinging nettles to be effective at combating hay fever. Unfortunately, the financial impact of COVID-19 has challenged us to find a more economical way to achieve this mission. Fortunately, cooking, steaming or drying the nettles takes the bite out of this weed. While holding the topmost leaf, clip the stem just below the first whorl of leaves, either with scissors or garden clippers. The modified hairs on the underside of the leaves and along the stem are used to inject this stinging solution into the skin. Your friends at Mother Earth Living and Mother Earth News. ... Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica) Stinging Nettle is an herbaceous, perennial flowering plant. Stinging nettles are covered with fine hairs containing formic acid. Soaking nettle leaves in water or cooking with them as an ingredient eliminates the formic acid inside. 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. All of them are edible. Advice you’ll never hear from the mainstream media. Click here for more information. To support our efforts please browse our store (books with medicinal info, etc.). The nettles now have lost their “sting” and can be used in place of spinach for most recipes, including lasagna or pasta sauce. Stinging Nettle also is a powerful medicine. Did it more then once. Male flowers can be yellow or purple, while female flowers are green and white. Sign in with your online account. Home → Survival → Food → Edible Plants Nettles: There are several species of nettles. How to Harvest Stinging Nettle Roots. Whenever possible, harvest nettles during the early part of the spring after they have first emerged from the soil. Identification of Stinging Nettle. 1 teaspoon seasoning mix of your choice. please check out our Stinging Nettle PDF magazine. Stinging nettle is edible. Share your nettles tips in the section below: featured nettles stinging nettles vitamins weeds. Bittercress edible parts/uses: The leaves, flowers, and … Look for plants that have eight leaves or less. If you are trying to harness the benefits of stinging nettle root, you are going to have to dig a bit. Slender nettle has less stinging hairs and dwarf nettle is smaller and more compact. We welcome you to our sister publication Mother Earth News. Whenever possible, harvest nettles during the early part of the spring after they have first emerged from the soil. Stinging Nettle is not your typical edible weed. They are often used as a substitute for spinach, and, in fact, have a taste similar to spinach with cucumber flavor notes. 3. Allergies: Tired of sniffling and suffering through allergy season? 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. Collect nettles in the spring when the leaves are young and tender. 1. Leaves, roots, and seeds have all been used medicinally, and each has different applications. 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. All parts of the nettle plant are edible and are used by some practitioners today in herbal remedies. don't have an online Written by: Eron Drew Natural Health 0.WP-PrintIcon{margin-bottom:-3px} Print This Article. First, it is important to properly identify this plant in the wild. Sign up below to get a free downloadable info sheet from the course, all about purple dead nettle. The leaves can be steamed and cooked much like spinach. 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. Wood nettle differs from stinging nettle because it has alternate leaves. To harvest nettles, it is best to wear a pair of gloves and a long-sleeved shirt. 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. Hi, thanks for stopping by. ‘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. 1/2 teaspoon salt (if it’s no salt in the seasoning) Set oven to 150 degrees Celsius (300 degrees Fahrenheit.) Stinging nettle chips: 4 cups (1 litre ) freshly picked stinging nettle leaves. For over 50 years, “The Original Guide to Living Wisely” has focused on organic gardening, herbal medicine, real food recipes, and sustainability. 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. 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, or Urtica dioica, is a common plant that grows in the United States, Canada, and Europe.It primarily grows in damp, fertile soil. Arthritis: Nettles have been used for centuries to treat arthritis. Edible Uses of Purple Dead Nettle. Bittercress (Cardamine hirsuta) Bittercress. 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). Photo By Olga Massov/Courtesy Flickr. The first edible part of the plant is the young shoots. Like to read more content, Join the Mother Earth Living Community Today! Detox: Because stinging nettles are a diuretic, they can be useful in cleansing and detox diets. It is in leaf from March to November, in flower from May to October, and the seeds ripen from June to October. 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). Nettles can also be steeped as a tea. These are best when harvested when they are around 6″ tall, I typically collect the top three or four leaf pairs. This article covers its use as plant food. This plant is one of the most nutritious plants on the planet. Purple deadnettle is not only a wild edible … In manufacturing, stinging nettle extract is used as an ingredient in hair and skin products. Nettle ‘pudding’ or ‘porridge’ was eaten in parts of Britain as a ‘pick-me-up after the winter’. They can be used in nettle soup or added to other soups and stews.
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