Nettles, with Yarrow Willard. Where they grow and ways to use them

By | April 18, 2012
When young, nettles are a great fortifying tonic in the spring to help us prepare for the new season of the sun. They are best enjoyed as food when 6 to 18 inches tall and should be cut 5 to 7 inches from the top with scissors or a knife and gloves. If you have inflamed or arthritic hands or wrists it is best to harvest without gloves as the stinging will be a helpful dose of healing for the season. Nettles can be rolled in gloved hands or blended fresh to reduce the stinging and eaten raw, but are best digested cooked or steamed. As they are packed full of minerals and nutrients, it is sometimes good to blend them with other spring green, like chickweed, dandelion leaf, lambs quarter, daisy, poke shoots, chopped fir tips or conventional greens like kale, spinach and chards. However you like your nettles, the experience of picking and eating this precious yet abundant spring green is rewarding.

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