Most people’s experience with stinging nettle happens when accidentally brushing up against the plant and the resulting stinging sensation that, as long as you don’t scratch, subsides rather quickly. My first experience was with my Austrian grandmother (Oma) when she served me a dish of steamed nettles. with a pat butter slowly melting into the dark green fissures. Absolutely delicious even for me, a small kid. In her heavy accent told me of all the good health stinging nettle brings and how its used in many culinary dishes. High in iron and other nutrients no wonder my Austrian relatives, young and elderly, have the stamina to venture into the mountains to ski or hike. Here in North America it is deemed a useless weed while we pop vitamin pills.
The trick with handling stinging nettle is cutting it down with a sickle and letting it wilt. Once it wilts, the treat of stings is much reduced or eliminated.
Great steamed on its own or with spinach, used with basil to make pesto or even as a ravioli stuffing with wild garlic and cream cheese.
Loves moist well draining soil and is, needless to say, deer resistant. Makes a nice patch once established.
- Seed Count: 200 – 300
- Collection Date: Aug 2020
- Hardiness Zone: 3-10
- Height and Width: 2m x clump
- Preferred conditions: full to semi sun; well draining humus rich soil
- Germination test type: hand sort
How to germinate Urtica dioica seed
Needs light to germinate, so surface sow on a prepared medium and mist seed into the medium for optimum seed contact as seed must be kept moist via daily mistings. Give 15-20C. Should germinate in 10-14 days. Give strong indirect light for strong seedlings. Handle tray/pots with respect or you will be reminded of the nature of this plant.