Stinging Nettle Sting Test

Join our large (and growing) community of food-lovers on Facebook. We are regularly inspired by members of this positive community. Come be inspired too.

With a goal to harvest stinging nettle before it succumbs to a heavy freeze, Frederick and I headed out to a friend’s creek last week with bags, clippers, and gloves.

The cool fall day was exquisite.

Two years ago I would have had “stings” from the nettle right through my leather garden gloves as I harvested.

It doesn’t seem possible, but if you are sensitive to nettle and have picked much of it, you know of what I speak. My rash would linger for a few days. It was always made worse by the inevitable bit of bare skin that I didn’t realize was bare — that spot would be quite uncomfortable from the burning sting of nettle for as long as five days.

This harvest was different. I was armed with a homemade extract of lambs quarters. A friend suggested the lambs quarters remedy in the spring and it worked so well, I threw some lambs quarters in vodka in an attempt to preserve the remedy. The lambs quarters extract has helped fight itch as well — in another strange Sequoia tale here.

Add to the lambs quarters and vodka extract that I’ve been eating lambs quarters soup, I was loaded from the inside out with my favorite stinging nettle remedy.

With the feeling of invincibility of a 17 year old with a new sport’s car, I lifted a sprig of nettle with my gloved hand and wondered if I could harvest gloveless. I touched the nettle with my bare hands as a test.

Indeed, gloves are still a really good idea.

If you touch the extra-spiny stems with your bare hands, a lambs quarters extract may keep you from crying like a baby but you may have a reminder for a day or two that stinging nettle stings.

If you would like to harvest nettle and want to be able to identify it by something other than its sting, here’s a quick video:

Related posts:

Subscribe to our Traditional Foods feed via email and access to the digital books in our kitchen tool kit.

Read more here (at about what is in the tool kit to date at the Traditional Foods website.

Enter your Email

Preview | Powered by FeedBlitz

There are no comments yet. Be the first and leave a response!

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment. Click here to log in.

Trackback URL