First Nations used it to produce cordage. Stinging nettle plant usually grows two to four feet high. 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. Fleshy, whitish, horizontally spreading rhizomes.  Reproduces primarily from roots and forms large colonies. dioica) is introduced. The juice from the nettle stem is an antidote for the sting, though I’ve wondered if you found yourself in a nettle patch how exactly you would get that juice without incurring further stings. The fabric is similar to that made with hemp or flax. You can start stinging nettle either from seed or from pulling up and transplanting a rooted stem. Researchers and field staff manage the property to improve habitat quality for wildlife, discover new ways to restore damaged landscapes and study forest ecology. In the wild it can be found around creek beds, in low areas, and near running water. The leaves and stem make most stinging nettle products; however the roots also have some medicinal qualities. Weight it down if necessary; it should be completely submerged. Alum is the mordant usually used with nettle; however, white vinegar used as a mordant with an infusion made from the leaves and the stems will produce a light sage green on silk. Personally, I don’t mind the sting and harvest bare-handed, although I don’t recommend it for everyone. Nettle tea may be the answer. It is propagated by seed or root division and can become invasive. The leaves are opposite (two leaves per node on the stem), heart-shaped and sharply toothed. Weigh them down with a stone and fill it up with water. Stinging nettle garden placement If nettles volunteer in your garden, leave them – they are known to be good companion plants that may increase the volatile oils in surrounding plants, thereby intensifying their flavor. Its dark green leaves have a flavor I enjoy as a side dish or mixed into pasta. It has been used for food, cordage, fabric for clothing and sails, dyeing material, and medicine. Many herbalists can hardly wait for spring to nourish their bodies naturally with fresh greens from the earth. Continued Stinging Nettle Doses. The circulation enhancing effect of the sting drove the Romans, when invading Britain, to flail themselves with stems of nettle to keep warm! To an untrained eye, nettle could be confused with members of the mint family. It can sit in the strained nettle solution for hours or overnight. Stinging nettle is an herbaceous plant and often grows to about 2 metres (6.5 feet) in height. I’m guessing you’re asking for a description of how it feels to be “stung” by stinging nettle (urtica dioica). Dock is the traditional antidote and you’ll often find them growing in close proximity. Starting stinging nettle from seed or transplants. If you touch a plant that looks like nettle and gives you a noticeable sting, it is probably stinging nettle. and reduce inflammation in the body [ 16 , 17 , 21 ]. For the first few hours, you feel like 20 bees have stung you, but after that it really does work. Plants with Square Stems. Consequently, it makes sense that rest of the plant contains a number of materials that protect its interior structures from its own poisons. For a light green dye, chop both the leaves and stems. ), If using wool you’ll want your water on the cool side to avoid causing the wool to felt. Around the cave where you are sleeping grow many of them; only those nettles, or the ones found in churchyards may you use. Stinging nettles’ European cousin has a similar looking without the dreaded sting. We have a lot of it here in the Pacific Northwest. Cover the barrel with a lid because this liquid will have a strong smell! Other languages reference the sting or nettle’s use in making fish nets. Cooked stinging nettle has a wonderful taste! Cut the leaves away from the stem using scissors and place your harvest in a basket. Dyeing with plant material yields lovely but muted colors. Stinging hairs are most abundant on the stems, leaf petioles and undersides of the leaves, especially along the leaf veins. It’s easiest to start from a transplant, but if you don’t have access to a stinging nettle patch, start your own plants from seed. Stinging properties disappear with cooking. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. The stinging nettle root has components that might decrease inflammation in the body and can increase urine output. Then check your email to find a welcome message from our Herbal Academy team with a special link to download our ", Making Herbal Preparations 101 Mini Course, Herbs for ADHD, Cognition, and Focus Intensive, Some people believed that nettle found growing in a circular pattern marks the entrance to an, Loki, the trickster, was believed to have been the, Another legend claims that if someone is sick with a fever, a family member should pull nettle up by the roots while chanting the sick person’s name to, In parts of Ireland, the last day of April was called “. Information offered on Herbal Academy websites is for educational purposes only. Eating them helps, due to the anti-inflammatory effect. Please simply create an account before buying/booking any courses. There is a long history of using stinging nettle for food.  Some tribal groups used a strong fiber from the stems to make twine for fishnets and snares.  The fiber can also be used to make paper and cloth that is more durable than linen. Through these education and outreach efforts, we seek to inspire others to work together and protect undeveloped landscapes. Hairs on stem: Are there hairs on the stems or not. I asserted over and over on the group that I was not growing nettles. The herb has anti-inflammatory qualities that can affect treatment of … It was later revealed it was used to make camouflage uniforms for the troops! But unlike stinging nettle, pellitory does not have stinging properties, despite having hairs on the leaves and stems. The nettle has sharp hairs on its leaves. Established in 2005, the property boundary at MPG North encloses 200 undeveloped acres in Western Montana’s Swan Valley. The leaves of this plant also have long stinging hair (trichomes) that inject chemicals like serotonin, histamine, and acetylcholine into the skin, when you accidentally touch them. Finally, the sting. So you can find recipes dedicated to nettle in cookbooks, wild edible books, and on the internet. Nettle has a square stem with simple leaves that grow opposite. I think it was saying “use me, use me!”. For the purposes of this article, the focus will be on Urtica dioica. The medicinal value of the nettle plant has followed it across continents from the past to the present.  Older plants, during or after flowering, contain silica crystals that irritate the kidneys and should not be consumed in large quantities.  Roots and leaves are used medicinally as a diuretic, to expel phlegm from the lungs and stomach, promote milk production in nursing mothers, and treat diarrhea and dysentery. Our ancestors were a suspicious lot and nettle has lots of interesting myths and lore surrounding it! When touched it delivers a sting due to the tiny hairs filled with chemicals on the leaves and stalk. Nettle has been used for gout, arthritis, skin disorders, anemia, allergies and asthma, bronchitis, urinary tract infections, sciatica, worms, weight reduction, and kidney stones. You must pick them, even though they blister and burn your hands; then you must stomp on them with your bare feet until they become like flax. Note that there are a handful of other plants with square stems and opposite leaves, which may be confused with the Mints. Boil the nettle in water (about 50/50 water to nettle) and then simmer for about an hour, and let it sit for several hours. Please add your email address below and click "Submit" to add yourself to our mailing list. Stinging nettle is well known for its poisonous hairs that contain formic acid and histamine. Like stinging nettle, pellitory (or Pellitory-of-the-Wall, or Lichwort), is a part of the nettle family Urticaceae. Stinging Nettle and Wood Nettle have hairs on their stem, and on their leaves; it's what causes the "sting". Clearweed and White Snakeroot do not have hairs on their stems. ... Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica), wood nettle (Laportea canadensis) and the stingless nettle (Boehmeria cylindrica) are all sources of fibres. Stinging hairs are longer, about 1 millimeter long, and tend to stick out aggressively. A wash of stinging nettle tea or common mullein tea (Verbascum thapsus) will often alleviate the stinging. It can be a coarse fabric or one as fine as good quality linen. Stinging nettle is called stinging nettle because it has needles which can poke your skin and cause a stinging sensation. Use stinging nettle wherever you would cooked spinach. Sign up for the Herbal Academy Newsletter, and we'll send you a free ebook. Quality and active ingredients in supplements may vary widely from maker to maker. The Nettle tribe, Urticaceae, is widely spread over the world and contains about 500 species, mainly tropical, though several, like our common Stinging Nettle, occur widely in temperate climates. 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. I had to admit that the leaves looked similar to my nettle plant, the stem was similarly square, but, and this was my smoking gun, the plant did not sting. We also create opportunities to share what we've learned with local conservation organizations, students of all ages, management agencies and volunteers. An ancient rhyme reminds us how to quell the sting of nettle: Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window), Please add your email address below and click "Submit" to add yourself to our mailing list. Each leaf has a jagged edge. However, nettles can be differentiated by the short, transparent hairs along the stem and undersides of their leaves. Nettles have both ordinary and stinging hairs on stems, leaf petioles (stem part of a leaf) and undersides of the leaves. The stingers (or needles) point down. And from that you must twine thread with which to knit eleven shirts with long sleeves. As with many plants, it is making a huge comeback as more people become both aware of its many benefits and learn to handle it. If you have had the unfortunate experience of brushing up against this herb, you’ll think that nothing good can come of it and will probably feel like scratching that old, now only imaginary, itch again. 5) Inflammation Stinging nettle leaf extracts may block inflammatory markers (TNF-a, IL-1, IL-6, NF-kB , etc.) Nettle stems are fibrous and have been used for making fabric, cordage, baskets, rugs, fish nets, and paper. It also has smooth margins on the leaves, and a reddish stem. If you cast one of these shirts over each of the eleven swans, the spell will be broken.”. please check out our Stinging Nettle PDF magazine. Its one of those plants that like “wet feet” (or dampish soil). The plant can spread vegetatively with its yellow creeping rhizomes and often forms dense colonies. Stinging nettle leaf and stem extracts have decreased blood sugar in small human studies. Affiliate links are shared throughout the website and the Herbal Academy may receive compensation if you make a purchase with these links. Optimal doses of stinging nettle have not been set for any condition. Nettle seems to stimulate growth in nearby plants and helps reduce bug infestations. The stem of a stinging nettle, just like the leaves, is covered in small, barb-like, stinging thorns or hairs. It has heart-shaped leaves and yellow and pink flowers, which generally bloom from June to September. Hans Christen Anderson mentions nettle in his tale. However, there are some stingless nettles out there. The toothed leaves are borne oppositely along the stem, and both the stems and leaves are covered with numerous stinging and non-stinging trichomes (plant hairs). Nettle has a square stem (but it is not in the mint family) and can grow to over six feet tall in optimal conditions. Mints and stinging nettles share a superficial resemblance, both having square stems and opposite leaves. To some people this sting is a very big deal; others shrug it off. Plants with square stems fall mainly into the mint family (Lamiaceae). Does anyone have any Stinging Nettle Root experience? To support our efforts please browse our store (books with medicinal info, etc.). The native species can be recognized in that male and female flowers appear on a single plant (monoecious), and the plant has only sparse stinging hairs, especially on the stem. Before making or purchasing stinging nettle it is best to determine whether the roots or the stem and leaves are needed for your particular health problem. Stems and undersides of leaves have fine, stinging bristles/hairs that cause stinging and occasionally blistering when touched. During World War II, nettle was harvested in Britain by the ton for undisclosed reasons. Nettle (Urtica dioica) has fulfilled many needs for humans in the past.  A tea of the leaves can also be used to curdle milk for making cheese. Other antidotes are mint, rosemary, and sage. You can also turn nettles into a liquid fertilizer by filling a barrel with the leaves and branches. Nature does care for us if we let her! Archeologists have documented its use from scraps of fabric found in Denmark burial sites from the Bronze Age (3000 – 2000 BC). The parts we use are the aerial parts, although the root and seed also have applications. Strain and place in a shallow pan and gently place in your fabric. A perennial plant to zone 2, nettle likes full sun but can grow in the shade, although shaded plants may not be as tall. “Look at the nettle that I hold in my hand! By working from top to bottom, you’re working with the stingers instead of against them. The root is what you hold so you don't sting yourself while you run around having a Stinging Nettle fight with your friends. You can use the same basic process with nettle roots for a yellow dye. (Here’s a good seed source.) So technically it works, and its aim is to decrease edema or the retention of fluid in the body.. The first patch I found in my backyard was accompanied by several dock plants. Some species of Urtica are on every continent (except Antarctica). nutrition, medicinal values, recipes, historical information, harvesting tips, etc.) As with other important plants, as humans migrated, they felt nettle so important that they brought it on their journeys to new homelands. Stinging_nettle_urtica_dioica_plant_colony_070611_JSAC.JPG, 041614_RAD_stinging_nettle_Urtica_diotica_young_reddish_plants-r.JPG, 061014_RAD_Urtica_dioica_stinging_nettle_whole_plant.JPG, Stinging_nettle_urtica_dioica_flowers_070611_JSAC.JPG, Short-stalked, opposite leaves with coarse teeth, Inconspicuous, greenish flowers in drooping clusters at leaf joints, Forms large colonies in moist, rich soils, Opposite pairs of leaves with stinging hairs, Greenish or brownish flowers with 4–5 sepals and no petals. Young leaves and stems are edible when cooked like spinach. (Some people pre-treat the fabric in vinegar before the actual dye process. The Herbal Academy neither endorses them nor is in any way responsible for their content. It can be consumed in a sautéd form with other vegetables in case you are a veggie lover. Those plants are found in the Loosestrife, Verbena and Stinging Nettle families, but none of them smell minty. Links to external sites are for informational purposes only. Clearweed has a very translucent appearing stem. The Herbal Academy makes neither medical claim, nor intends to diagnose or treat medical conditions. Stinging nettle is a perennial herb that grows from two to six feet tall, depending on the soil conditions and weather. Depending on the species, nettle is native to Europe, the Mediterranean, and Asia. Next, the stem.  The leaves have high nutritive value (iron, calcium, and vitamins A, C, and D) when eaten or drunk as a tea. Native Americans used nettle for this. Once I started using nettle, a patch volunteered right at the end of my deck! Also, just grab a stalk of stinging nettle with gloved hands and whack the nettle stem on the sore joint a few times. Urtica is derived from the Latin word meaning “to burn or sting” (for obvious reasons). It is used topically in salves and lotions, and internally as infusions, decoctions, vinegars (nettle vinegar instructions) and tinctures. A powdered form is used to treat hay fever and prevent the onset of food allergies.  The stinging leaves may be applied to skin as a counter-irritant to bring circulation and healing to arthritic areas, sores, and bruises. Stinging nettle leaves, roots and stem can be cooked and added in your soups and pasta. For those of you who are interested in natural plant dyeing, nettle is a fun place to start. Greenish, stalkless flowers, 1–2 mm long, are tinged with pink or red and grow in dense, drooping clusters at stem tips and upper leaf joints. At one time it was considered an important textile equal in quality to cotton. Then check your email to find a welcome message from our Herbal Academy team with a special link to download our "Herbal Tea Throughout The Seasons" Ebook!

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