As a child I remember fearing the prickles of these wild and rampant weeds. Little did I know that the sting of this plant was protecting a delicious green vegetable, a healing herb and a wonderful vegan organic fertilizer.
Nettles (Urtica dioica), are high in many minerals, flavonoids, essential amino acids, proteins and vitamins, including chlorophyll, nitrogen, iron, vitamins A, B1, B5, C, D, E and K, iron, potassium, copper, zinc, magnesium, calcium and more. All of these beneficial plant-based compounds combine to create a natural tonic and immune builder for both your body and the garden.
Nettles have traditionally been used to treat allergies and respiratory related illness, reduce inflammation, cleanse the blood, relieve pain, stop hair loss, lower blood pressure, heal wounds, stimulate digestion, relieve anemia, balance blood sugar/hormone levels and the list goes on and on. They are a powerful plant that is great to have around the house, but donít worry Ė Iím not suggesting planting this weed in your garden.
Weeds are simply plants that have adapted to self-seed and propagate rampantly, basically any plant that is difficult to control. So stinging nettles are best harvested wild, or planted in a large pot far, far, far away from your garden.
Thankfully, they are abundant in many parts of the world. So most likely, all youíll have to do is go for a spring walk with your nettle-picking gear in hand, or pop down to the natural health food store and buy the dried leaves in tea bag or bulk form.
Wondering how you brew a cup of tea or a veganic fertilizer from this pesky powerhouse?