Houzz Logo Print

Nettles and what other herbs/weeds are less popular but beneficial

6 months ago

A few years ago I grew stinging nettles from seed, Urtica dioica, intending to try it for my rheumatoid arthritis - it grows well, to say the least :). Other than stinging myself occasionally, (felt interesting but didn't seem to help much), I had not used it.

We had a garden party on Friday and one of the guests was enthusiastic about the nettles, listing many ways she used it. Catching that enthusiasm, my husband made a soup recipe from Elizabeth Schneider's Essential Reference 'Vegetables from Amaranth to Zucchini' , the recipe called Springtime Pottage. We have sorrel, chives, nettles in the garden and used onion and potato from the store. Instead of water, we used the lentil water leftover from my French green lentil salad for the party/seedling exchange. I'm here to say it was delicious and I assume very healthful - I felt very good after eating that soup!

Another benefit is the that nettles are a host plant for Milbert's Tortoiseshell butterfly. Starting in April, we began seeing them even though the spring here has been very chilly. That was a treat and we did not see them here prior to growing nettles, although they are prolific in the natural park nearby which has nettles growing naturally.

We also have plenty of devil's club (Oplopanax horridus) in the perimeter of our 3/4 acre yard and plan to peel and make tea out of that this spring, for health benefits.

Anybody else using medicinal herbs lately, in cooking, salves, etc?

Just looking for inspiration, thanks!

Comments (22)