Often found in woodlands, this native nettle is considered by many to be the best of the nettles for eating. Nutritious and tasty, the young shoots in spring or tender growing tips later in the season make a fine addition to soups or stews. The plant is armed with stinging hairs which can cause intense itching, albeit usually of short duration. Light cooking quickly inactivates the stinging hairs. One can generally handle the plants, or cuttings from them, by carefully grasping the leaves, which are largely devoid of stinging hairs. Gloves can be helpful, also. Aside from its edible qualities, wood nettle is also rather ornamental, with its large, crinkly, heart-shaped leaves. Best in moist, rich soil.
Wood Nettle (laportea canadensis)
(Urticacae – nettle family)
Perennial • Ht 3-4′ • Zones 3-9
Native to Eastern and Central North America
Categories: Edible Plants, Natives, Perennials
Partial Shade, Shade, Sun
Zone 3, Zone 4, Zone 5, Zone 6, Zone 7, Zone 8, Zone 9
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