The Elusive Stinging Nettle
Updated: Apr 29, 2020
Fi's assignment in her wildcrafting class this past week was, among other things, to find stinging nettle (Urtica dioica) and create a recipe with it. Unfortunately, we couldn't find any near us and we aren't allowed to wander around people's yards while we are sheltering in place so we ended up ordering some dried nettle on amazon as a backup. It ended up being a good idea because I called and asked everyone I knew if they had it including a few plant nurseries that informed me that of course they didn't have it because its a weed. It's native to this area but I'm not sure I believe it after all the time Fi and I spent traipsing around looking for it. I'm talking hours. It clearly didn't bother me at all not to be able to find it, but I digress. As we researched nettle we found out that it is a really great herb to incorporate into your daily life because its bursting with beneficial vitamins and minerals including iron which my "barely eats meat" kid can always use more of. We started off with a basic dried nettle tea and then moved on to the more time intensive Nettle Fruit Leather. The tea is something that can easily be incorporated into your every day life and comes with a wealth of benefits such as:
A, C, K, and B vitamins
Iron, phosphorous, calcium, magnesium, manganese, copper, boron
Phytonutrients such as chlorophyll and beta carotene
Some studies have been done on nettle and have shown that it may reduce inflammation, it may alleviate seasonal allergies, it may lower blood pressure, and may aid in blood sugar control.
Fi has even been enjoying the tea and we've been making ourselves a cup each morning. She decided she'd show everyone how to make it because its so simple and so nutritious. All you need is hot water and dried nettle! We've been using Frontier Co-op Nettle and we really like it!