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  • Elaine Marsh

Nettles – Food and Medicine

We often see this amazing herb as a weed that needs to be removed from our gardens, not realising how many ways that this plant can be utilised in our daily lives.

With spring finally here you will now find one of the most useful and nutritious plants sprouting in the garden. Long regarded as a marvellous spring tonic, high in vitamin C, chlorophyll, iron, calcium, silica, histamine, serotonin and boron.

Interestingly the juice of the nettle is an antidote for its own sting and offers instant relief when applied, handy to know! You can also use other herbs to treat the sting, mint, sage and rosemary too.

You can feed your houseplants with any leftover nettle tea. They will enjoy the liquid and dregs by providing a nutritional mineral boost.

Nettles have been used as a hair tonic and can also stimulate hair growth.

This abundant plant is an anti-inflammatory and anti-histamine that will help ease hay fever and sinus problems opening up constricted nasal passages and bronchial passages.

This vibrant weed has been used in the past to help reduce the severity of asthma attacks, reduce blood sugar levels, stimulate circulation, help arthritis, eczema, rheumatism and treat anaemia.

You can now harvest the nettle tops and make a tea(wearing rubber gloves) rinse them if needed. A couple of fresh nettle tops per cup in a pot, infuse for 15-20 minutes.

The tops can also be added to soups, a couple of minutes of boiling the leaves in a little water will neutralise the sting!


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