Once nettle has gone to seed, the leaves will become tough, a little bitter and develop gritty particles that may irritate the urinary tract of some people. Urtica dioica. I have not tried it myself, but I can’t see why you couldn’t. And while you’re at it, why not enjoy a cup of stinging nettle tea – steep your dried nettles in boiling water for a 3-5 minutes. How to Eat Stinging Nettles. To prepare for planting, look for an area with rich soil and sufficient moisture. I make home cooking easy, enjoyable and deliciously fun! How to Make Nettle Lea Tea. Here are a few fresh ideas for preparing your spring harvest: Celebrate spring with a beautiful, green, delicately fresh Nettle Soup (in Swedish, Nässelsoppa). Getty Stewart is a Professional Home Economist, speaker, frequent media guest and writer dedicated to putting good food on tables and agendas. I write from Nairobi, Kenya. That will prevent mold and allow seeds to breath. We chopped the nettles off near the ground and stripped the leaves from the stems. The stinging nettle seems able to compete with other plants quite well. Filed Under: All Recipes, Autumn Recipes, Herbal Remedies, Nettle Recipes, The Kitchen, Wild Food, Your email address will not be published. The stems were between 3 and 4 feet tall. Start the Nettle Seeds Indoors. Nettle Seed Honey. It can be found growing on sandy, well-drained soil during the summer and fall months. Dry nettles and use to make nutritious teas. Dry or cook nettle leaves to remove the stinging effect. In your option is it o.k. The effect of stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) seed oil on experimental colitis in rats. If you do happen to get stung during your foragings, this plantain salve recipe is a must. If there is any sign of mold, don’t use them. The Bull Nettle has edible seeds and an edible taproot too. In the photo below, you can see the two leaf sets on either side of the cut, both of these will grow into new shoots. I am also going to scatter a little nettle seed around the transplanted nettle. Farmers know that old manure or compost piles are a favorite hang out for stinging nettles. Basically, any recipe calling for cooked spinach or kale can be made with stinging nettle. Are the year old nettles still good? Some herbalists recommend picking them when they are green, and some when they are brown. I’d search Google, rifle through Jonny’s herb & wild plant books, watch videos and then create little flashcards with the most important info I’d discovered. I’m not sure if the spittle bug which make white foamy homes like nettles. I bet your godmother is having a grand time watching you process stinging nettles Lol, my mom chuckles too. Cut about 2 -3 inches above ground level just above where there are two leaves branching off. Blanching is an important step before freezing nettle. Living the real-food dream on a Cornish smallholding. Thanks for visiting and commenting, it’s great to hear about other people’s experiences. I have nettles all over my yard for free, so score! 5 Reasons to Make Red Raspberry Leaf TeaMelissa K. Norris. It’s best to start the seeds indoors 4-6 weeks before the final frost date in your region. Frittatas are an excellent way to use up leftover bits in the fridge. Glad to hear you’re able to use your nettle as food, protection and for its medicinal purposes. Start off with about 1 teaspoon of seeds per day. These are the adaptogens I came across (in no particular order): Whilst the specific action of each of these herbs may differ, by being adaptogenic it means they will all help balance the body (and mind) in times of stress. Instructions Identify the female flowers to harvest the seeds from collect the plant remove the leaves first and then strip the entire stem with seed clusters into cardboard box or bowl. Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) has been a staple in herbal medicine since ancient times, such as to treat arthritis and back pain. I’m trying sulphur in my diet which is great for skin repair and nettles are apparently good for eczema so I will try it on my skin problems too. Puree the potatoes in the stock and add the nettle leaves – puree more if needed. Then use as tea or in soups and stews. Once the sesame seeds are hot to the touch (perhaps 3 minutes) add the sea vegetables along with the nettle seed, stir, and toast for just 1 minute more, stirring occasionally or shaking the pan. 27. I sure hope you give it a try. i want to know if freeze dry root or freeze dry leaf would make a difference.. i think the root is stronger than the leaf. Others wont feel these effect in the same immediate way. If you can confirm that they are stinging nettle, harvest them early in the season when they are in good condition before the seeds form. Cheaper and even more nutrient rich than spinach. I would appreciate your advice I help put healthy, seasonal food on tables and agendas. All the best, What are yo, https://www.gettystewart.com/how-to-saute-stinging-nettle-with-garlic/, https://www.gettystewart.com/how-to-make-stinging-nettle-soup/, https://www.kidney.org/atoz/content/herbalsupp. Hi Dennis, This is your year. Most of the nettles growing near me are the perennial Urtica dioica but if the annual Urtica urens is more abundant near you then do remember when collecting seeds that the success of next year’s new plants depends on them. Add enough water (2-4 Tbsp) to just cover the bottom of the pan. Fresh or Dried? Stinging nettle has been used for centuries throughout the world. When the seeds have sprouted, thin them out. If you have a dark, dry, airy space to hang small bundles of nettle, that might be another option to consider. Spittles – Believe it or not, there are some critters that make their home in nettles. Nettles can be assisted with stratification, but it is not necessary. Since my last post on harvesting nettle seeds I’ve had a couple of emails asking me for more specific details about how and when to harvest. Oh, if you do happen to get stung, try soothing it with a paste of baking soda and water or an anti-histamine cream. They are easily confused, and it’s only since reading this article that I’ve learnt the difference. As our germination testing continues, "Packed for 2021" seeds will continue appearing. I use stems in the soup, you’ll notice I put them in earlier than the leaves so they get tender. 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. Hi Lee The third planting method for nettle is to plant in a container. On the one hand it helps to build blood and on the other it helps to purify it. Can you elaborate on the sizes of the leaves you use? I also appreciate the value of stinging nettles much to the amusement of my godmother who lives on the old family farm. Thanks for the great questions, here are my thoughts: Thanks for the harvesting advice! And they’re all pretty pricey. 6 TIps to Avoid Food Storage Mistakes. They are a fantastic source of calcium, magnesium, potassium, silicon, boron and zinc. Mix the juice with the nettle powder until you have a paste. How great is it that you and I can have the same edible plant growing across the globe in two very different habitats. Hi Aaron, thanks for the feedback, glad you enjoyed the article. And of course, freezing is another great way to preserve your nettle for later use. May 28, 2014 at 2:43 pm […] dry your leaves, rinse and pat dry. To gather your seeds, just snip off the strings into a bag or cut down the nettle tops, tie upside down inside a linen bag and give them a good shake to get them out! In tea, the flavor is more pronounced so I usually mix it with hyssop, chamomile, mint or some other flavorful herb. They have specific actions on the kidney and are often used in cases of kidney failure. Then, wearing rubber gloves, I rub the seed off into a bowl. I would never prescribe consuming a certain amount per day. You can also hang leaves to dry in small bunches. Since the seeds are edible, I like to harvest and dry them, which is a bit labor intensive, however well worth the effort. I even snacked on them for couple years but luckily didn’t ingest too much. Identification of Stinging Nettle. A friend gifted me some harvested nettle. You can take nettle a few ways – herbal tea, tincture, or you could even eat the nettle leaves. After it flowers and seeds form, stinging nettle gets more gritty which may lead to urinary concerns in some people. Nettle seed nourishs the endocrine glands, antidotes poisons internally and externally, and provides a curative, unique wine. Thanks for the tasty tip, Marj! You can crumble the leaves into any soup, stew or sauce. 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. We make nettle tea and spray it on our plants to give them a pick me up in cool spring weather. Also Read: How to Prepare and Use Stinging Nettle, How to Freeze Stinging Nettle, How to Dry Stinging Nettle Despite what others may say, you’re not crazy! I strip the stalk bare, then separate the leaves from the seeds & seed clusters. You could even turn the dried nettle into a powder and add it to smoothies, soups or sauces – as much or as little as you like. I have endless stinging nettles on my little farm and after walking thru them early on I quickly learned to give them the respect that they demand LOL, but since then I have also been fascinated by them. Oh yes, let’s all frittata! Is it just the texture that doesn’t work for the larger leaves? All the best, 26. She is the author of several recipe books on enjoying and preserving fruit, Founder of Fruit Share, a mom and veggie gardener. My name is Jo and I live in Australia. Place about 2 teaspoons of dried leaves in a tea strainer. The flowers bloom from late spring, over summer and into early autumn. Each of these miracle herbs will adapt to bring balance to your unique system. Some of them are under threat as they are being stripped from their natural landscapes to fulfil international orders. Any ideas other than tea that I could use it up with? Lay the freshly washed roots out in the shade or in a dry room on a cloth to drain and dry on the surface, turning them every so often to aid the process. Fresh or Dried? Have a look, stay a while, leave a comment or drop me a line. When you’re ready for them, just pull them out, rinse if you wish and go for it! The flower heads are snipped from the stems (many seeds are already falling off onto the leaves) into a large bowl to collect all of the seeds. What do you use yours for? One of the biodynamic herbs. Four pounds of fresh roots will yield about one pound dried. Bull Nettle is a perennial plant that grows in parts of the Southeastern USA. However, nettle seeds are only on the female plant on the right. Frittata: olive oil, potatoes, eggs, blanched stinging nettle leaves, onion +or green onion, garlic, milk, chedder cheese if desired, tomato pieces if desired, salt and pepper. https://www.wolfcollege.com/stinging-nettle-harvesting-processing-and-recipes I am interested in the storage of nettles in my freezer. But I think I’m ready now. Most of them don’t grow in the UK. 2013;29(9):838-845.22585933. I have been watching them grow and wither away year after year for several years. My new backyard is woodsy and natural, and I have plenty growing…so I will be drying, harvesting and freezing…for the first time. Or you can put them in a […] Reply. If so, does that mean that they would be okay for teas? As for the brown spots, I’m not sure what they might be, but I probably would avoid them. Patch of nettle in sunny spot along edge of forest. What length of time do think they would be okay stored in the freezer? Steep in a teapot for 10-20 minutes along with any other fresh or dried herbs you fancy. I have had stinging nettle on pizza and it is delicious! You should leave roughly one inch of space between each plant. Drinking them in a tea or tisane. Enjoy! Sprinkle them on salads, porridge, granola, smoothies, heck, even on your roast dinner! I found it growing along the edge of the property and left it to grow to over 6 feet. Nettle tincture is most helpful for allergies when taken for more than 30 days, however, we’ve upped the dose for acute allergy symptoms and got pretty quick relief. Before puttingt them in the garden, harden them off for a week. can you help me? You will smell the toasted sesame, sea vegetables and nettle seed. Nothing formal, just picking a herb that grows on our farm, then learning all I can find out about it. If I find extra, I dry it to add depth of flavor to various herbal tea blends. You have three options for consuming stinging nettle seeds daily. While it does appear to be edible, anyone considering eating it, should do more in-depth research on how to safely use it. to dehydrate them in a oven at it’s lowest temperature, or will this in some way lower the nutritional value of the plant ? Hi Getty, When dry grind them to a powder in your blender or a coffee grinder. If the look and texture might be an issue for anyone around the table, you could grind the the dried nettles to a powder and add them to just about anything (I add dried beet powder in various quantities to soups, smoothies, stews, spaghetti sauce, etc). Amid all this research, I came across the term ‘adaptogen’ for the first time. All info sources are noted where applicable. I'd love to know what's cooking with you. Freshly harvested nettle will store in a bag in the vegetable drawer of your refrigerator, unwashed, for at least 2-3 days (probably longer). It has been in a paper bag a few days and is partly dry. Getty. I can’t wait to try it. It certainly shows how hardy nettle is. Stinging nettle can be found across the globe. Fresh seeds are okay, but it's best to dry them as "they have a gentler effect," she says. Thanks for all of the great info! Wait approximately 14 days for proof of germination. Plastic bags don’t breath as well and may cause condensation which will cause mold to grow if you don’t empty the bag right away. The thicker the pieces are, the smaller you should cut them. So, say you’re struggling with anxiety and insomnia, they will calm you and help you sleep. You could even turn the dried leaves into powder that could be added to just about anything. They prefer sunlight, but will tolerate some shade. What do you think? Eat Raw: Compared to many other seeds, nettle seeds are soft and could be eaten just like that. so far no luck with nettles. They combat adrenal fatigue in a nourishing and tonifying way, regulating our energy, sleep and healing response. White Dead Nettle looks very similar to stinging nettle but does not sting here in UK. Store your cuttings in a paper bag or basket. Had a severe case of hives last summer-went to doc. It is a highly nutritious vegetable that I like to dry for tea. •Blood and Circulation (leaf): It’s effects on blood and circulation are broad. The green seed is quickly separated from any stray leaves or stems by sifting it through a standard steel mesh kitchen sieve. Getty, This looks like a perfect green to use for Martha Stewart’s Spinach and Feta Pie, which I make frequently but have been using other greens because fresh organic spinach is so expensive. It gets rid of the irritation within seconds. Tie the nettle heads in bunches and hang upside down somewhere warm and dry for a few days/week until they are fully dried. It grows rapidly and will reach its typical 3-5 foot height quite quickly. Others wont feel these effect in the same immediate way. Whenever I forage stinging nettles I always wear rubber gloves. That way you’ll get the best nutrients from the plant and you’ll be much happier and confident with your edibles. The nettle has sharp hairs on its leaves. I wanted to understand the herbs that grew where I live. Are they viruses spots? But if that were the only defense the plant had, it would be nothing more than a very brief, minor pin prick. Thank you ,Jo, Hi Jo, Raw nettle will irritate the throat and cause pain and discomfort. Do you think it still has some good properties? Hi Tim, For nettle seed that I plan to feed to other people, I take the precaution of toasting it in a dry frying pan. Nettles are a good source of Vitamin B-complex, Vitamin … Sign up to get articles by Getty delivered to your inbox. Good luck with your experiments. You’re just going to be missing out on our magical adaptogenic qualities (see below). You could try adding the leaves toward the end of the soup making just to long enough for them to rehydrate. If you like baking, the drop nettle cheese biscuits are also a great way to introduce others to nettle – let them think it’s spinach at first! Nettle is easy to grow and can easily be started by seed indoors, or divided from existing patches. They’re anti-inflammatory, which on its own makes this a herb most of us could do with incorporating into our lives. Have you tried freezing it in ice cube trays so you can add a “puck” into smoothies, soups or stews? Drink a cup of tea per day-love the taste too. Most foragers suggest cutting the stems and hanging them to dry in order to allow for insects to escape (this is after all a plant-based protein). Remove from heat … Plant 1-3 seeds in a pot that is filled with a good quality potting soil. Sorry, I can’t help you with this one. You'll get plenty of practical everyday tips from a Professional Home Economist who enjoys all food in balance and moderation, tries to limit the amount of processed foods, works to reduce food waste and is always open to questions. Nettle seeds are stimulating and for some people a small pinch could make them feel 'buzzy'. Despite what others may say, you’re not crazy! It forms great intruder deterrent and now provides food. Also Known As – Urtica dioica Wild Crafted USA, Gifford Pinchot Forrest Washington State . The optimum time to pick stinging nettle is just before blossoms develop in spring and early summer. To freeze, you’ll need to blanch the nettle first to remove the sting and make it freezer stable. Hi Laverne, Greens can be stir fried or braised as well. LEARN MORE... Sign up to harvest practical recipes, time-saving tips, seasonal and preserving tutorials and helpful kitchen ideas. When the harvest begins, I am going to dry a supply for tea and for adding to soups, and I’m going to freeze some for use as a spinach-substitute. Enjoy and let me know what you think. Especially as I’ve harvested nettle seeds from around our little organic farm for years! After all that work of harvesting nettle, you can wash, bundle, dry and store it for the coming months. You can put them in a dehydrator on the herb setting. I would love any recommendations . Hair and skin are strongly influenced by nettle seeds. I have a small patch in my backyard, will that be enough for me to cook with, or will i have to forage around the neighborhood to supplement? Hi Getty – I have a large bag of dried nettles. 300 Seeds My girlfriend crochets constantly and im starting to relies how many things we could make 100% off our land if i just had a fiber crop of some sort. Here’s my tutorial on drying herbs. Cooking or drying neutralises the toxic components, and nettles can be used as a tea or in soup, blanched for a salad or even added to pizza. Here’s a step by step to. I bought 2large bags of organic stinging nettles last year. And depending on the time of year, we’ll either have pigs in the field or bacon in the freezer. You’ll find patches in disturbed soils, along streams or river banks, on old homesteads and along the edge of clearings, fence lines or forest pathways where the sunlight comes through. Read More. 2011;14(12):1554-1561.21861725. Cut them into very small pieces with pruners or scissors. Drying. If not, I would not eat it in any way. You can mix ground nettle seeds into runny honey and store in glass jars. It’s this cocktail that causes the long lasting stinging or burning sensation we experience. Nettle does especially well on the edges of meadows, pastures, or streams where the soil stays moist but isn’t waterlogged. I enjoyed reading your piece on the Nettle, a Cornish bush Favorited of mine. These adaptogens, or adaptogenic herbs, were often talked about with awe and respect. You’ll also find how we can work together to make good food happen for everyone. Nutritionally speaking, they contain: Medical herbalists use nettle seeds for a variety of conditions. Thanks for your article. You should leave roughly one inch of space between each plant. You’ll find my favorite recipes, tips and how to’s for making tasty homemade food & preserves. Getty. I knew they were good for you, I just didn’t realise how good! In the image below you’ll see two nettle plants that appear to both be covered in seeds. I’m Janie, I’m a food writer, photographer and recipe creator. Nettle tincture is most helpful for allergies when taken for more than 30 days, however, we’ve upped the dose for acute allergy symptoms and got pretty quick relief. They are encased in what looks like green bishops hats (mitres) gathered in funny geometric clusters and are best gathered when green. 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. There are several ways you can store nettle. Learn the ways this herb can help promote health and prevent disease, and how to make your own nettle tea. 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. Have you heard the buzz about Stinging Nettle Seeds? Hmm, not sure that I’ve met a stinging nettle that doesn’t sting – are you 100% confident in what you have? Probably not something you want to eat. If it has been stored at a consistent temp without exposure to moisture and as little air as possible, it will be safe to use for years. Kiva recommends “In sensitive individuals, this may only be a small pinch and can range up to a tablespoon. Nettles are free and grow all over the place, but if you're picking a lot, please be respectful to the plants, only take what you need and leave enough for them to re-seed. The sting is a combination of tiny barbs and the release of chemicals. All information in this article is gleaned from my interest and research in wild plants both on and offline. I have never tried using stinging nettle root, nor have I seen much about it. Soaking the seeds in vodka for 1-2 months, then straining will give you a herbal tincture you can take in small doses every day. According to botanist Laura Reeves who I mentioned in the article, the black spiny caterpillar of the Milbert’s tortoishell butterfly only lay their eggs on nettle. […] Reply. Before you search the hood, test it out and see just how much you like it and how much you see yourself using it. I used a spray bottle of water for germination. I’m guessing that I can, but all of the recipes I’ve found have required fresh nettles. Then dry them overnight at around 40°C (104°F) until they are crispy dry. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. The seeds can be eaten raw or roasted and the tap root must be either roasted or baked. Store blanched leaves in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 5 days, or you can dry them well and freeze them in a sealed bag. It loves rich, moist soil high in nitrogen. When the seeds have sprouted, thin them out. Required fields are marked *. However, you can dry them for up to a year or keep them for a short time in an airtight container in the freezer (up to 3 months). Stinging Nettles is one of the wild foods that come up every Spring in our garden. Read More. Once dry, strip off the strands of seeds and rub them through a sieve, you’ll be left with a beautiful harvest of dried nettle seeds. The sensation may last just a few minutes or a couple of hours, depending on the amount of contact and each individual. I have wanted to harvest them for a long time but have just finally gotten up the nerve to this spring!! J Med Food. Enjoy! When sauteed or in soup or biscuits I find the stinging nettle quite mild and pleasant tasting – even milder than spinach. How Much – It all depends on what you want to make. The tap root can be surprisingly large compared to the rest of the plant. Pour boiling water over it and let it seep for 10 to 15 minutes. Eating them in their raw or dried form. Heat a large pan over medium high heat. Let's put good food on the table! The flowers are dioecious, so to have fertile seed, plants of both genders will be required. Nettle seeds are tiny, light dependant germinators that can be started indoors or out. Also, most sites recommend you not use the stems. Thanks for sharing and opening conversation on the stinging nettle. Just bundle up six or seven stems, and hang them in a dry, dark place with good air circulation. Stinging nettle is a cold season perennial plant, meaning it is early to pop up in the spring. One site recommended I check the underside of the leaves for “white spittles” when I harvest do you know what the heck it was talking about? They should dry in about 24 hours in a dehydrator set to 100°F. As a food source, nettle seeds are incredibly useful. Nettle seeds need light to germinate, so you should use a small amount of soil to cover them. You can dry nettle leaves as you would any herb. Try using dried nettles mixed into herbal teas or grind them into a powder and add a tablespoon in soups or smoothies. Also make sure after the initial soaking of soil at planting time you allow soil to dry out a bit between mistings.