Spring may not officially be here…. But no one told the nettles! They are nice and early this year and this delicious, nutrient packed green is popping up everywhere! I look forward to spring nettle harvests every year and I make sure to gather enough to make into many fresh meals and still have copious amounts to dry for use in infusions over the winter. Many people fear nettle because of the bad reputation it has for stinging and have no idea how delicious it is, yet alone what a broad spectrum pharmacy it contains.
Nettle has dozens of uses, but is mostly used as a nutritive, tonic, kidney ally, a superb women’s ally and a spring alterative. In 100g of nettle there is about 2900 mg of Calcium, 860mg of magnesium, 41.8mg of iron, 1750mg of potassium as well as many other essential minerals and vitamins. Using nettle during pregnancy and lactation is well known as an amazing galactogogue to enrich breast milk and nourish the mother’s blood all throughout pregnancy.
I recommend having an everyday spring brew or meal containing nettles. This plant medicine will tonify and strengthen bodily tissues, heal damaged tissues and it’s rich mineral content will make hair gleam, glow and thicken. Nettles have a very powerful restorative action on the adrenals. Use it for increasing energy, lessening allergies, and even for stabilizing blood sugar. The usual daily dose is a half cup of freshly steamed greens or 1-2 cups of a strong infusion. Make sure and only harvest young nettles, once they flower they produce substances that are undesirable. Happy harvesting and make sure and take in some nice deep breaths while you’re in the forest!
sources: Healing Wise by Susun S. Weed (I highly recommend this book)