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Urtica dioica - Stinging Nettle

Urtica dioica - Stinging Nettle

If you look past the prickly exterior, stinging nettle is a wonderful plant with nearly endless uses!

Common Name: Stinging nettle

Scientific Name: Urtica dioica

Plant Family: Urticaceae (Nettle Family)

Primary Uses

Edible Parts: Nettle can be steeped into a delicious and nutritious tea, brewed into beer, cooked and eaten, added to soups and even turned into a pesto! The older leaves become gritty, so only eat the young leaves.

Medicinal Uses: Nettles helps with allergies and hay fever, as well as reproductive systems (PMS, menopause, fertility, prostate issues). It also can help increase energy with gout, rheumatism, anemia, exhaustion, menstrual difficulties, skin problems. One traditional method, which is still used, is to induce a nettle rash to relieve arthritis and swelling

Other Uses: Nettle can be made into fabric, paper or used as a compost activator.

**Nettle is safe to handle when dried, heated, or mashed, but be careful!!**

Meaning of Scientific Name: Urtica: stinging, dioica: male and female flowers are on separate plants

Designing with this Plant

USDA Hardiness Zones: 3-10

Forest garden layer: Herbaceous

Nettle can be propagated with its runners or as seeds, prefers semi-shade, and moist environments


Works cited

Dave’s Garden “European Nettle, Stinging Nettle, Common Nettle.” (2018).

Gladstar, Rosemary. (2012). Medicinal Herbs. North Adams, MA: Storey Publishing.

Plants for a Future “Urtica dioca -L.” (2018).