Stinging Nettle Harvest
After years of not succeeding in getting Stinging Nettle growing well in my garden, it has finally taken root, and is growing abundantly, but right under my Feijoa tree. This is the worst place it could grow, as you may well know, Feijoas are harvested from the ground (not the tree), and to do so would require fossicking in Stinging Nettle...
So last week I harvested my entire seasons growth. I adorned gloves and snipped it back close to the base, letting it drop into open baskets.
I did make the mistake of doing this barefoot in short sleeves and now have stinging soles of my feet, and buzzing forearms!
This was my biggest homegrown harvest yet, I am beyond excited. I use Stinging Nettle in SO many ways & it's one of my all time favorite wild plants!
Some of my favorite ways to use Nettle:
~ In herbal teas, a delicious & nutrient rich nourishing tea, especially useful after illness to strengthen the body. I'm drinking my Nettle fresh and drying baskets full for use throughout the year.
~ In my Nettle Hair Oil (available on my website), Nettle strengthens & conditions hair, stimulates the hair follicles to encourage new hair growth, and is touted at preventing greyness (not sure about that part...but worth a try hey!).
~ In a Nettle Brew. I brewed up a huge batch of Nettle Beer, which is now sitting in a big jar with an airlock on as the fermentation activates. My last Nettle beer was my all time favorite homebrew...
~ In food, I love Nettle leaves sauteed in an omelette or made into the traditional Nettle Soup.
I won't be doing this, but Nettle can also be used to make fibre, it's one of the strongest fibres on the planet with a very long history of use. I have a couple of pieces of Nettle fibre clothing, which are some of my favorite pieces.
Nettle can also create a beautifully soft and gentle natural dye, and I think I'll try using the excess from my homebrew to extract color to dye fabric.
You can learn all about Stinging Nettle in my online video foraging course, there's a whole section on Nettle, along with a comprehensive video.
I also hope to include Nettle in my upcoming 3rd foraging guide.