Transformational Gardening

Disclaimer: Foraging can be fun, rewarding and provide health benefits. As a novice forager, I will be sharing my foraging experiences. However, in order to be safe, always consult with local foraging experts and guidebooks before beginning foraging. Children should learn to forage safely by being guided by experienced adults. Never ingest anything unless you are certain of the identification and safety of the plant. Some plant species are inedible and some are poisonous.

Dwarf Nettle (Annual Nettle, Burning Nettle) (Urtica urens): Images

Date Location Notes Images
May 8, 2011 Southeastern, New Hampshire Dwarf Nettle has opposite leaves like Stinging Nettle (Urtica dioica), but its leaves are bigger and have fewer and far deeper teeth. The plant only grows up to 2 feet tall. It seems to have numerous stinging hairs on the stem and fewer on the leaves. At this point in the year, the stingers are too flexible to penetrate the skin.

As far as I can tell, Dwarf Nettle is edible just like Stinging Nettle. (See: “Edible and Useful Plants of Texas and the Southwest: A Practical Guide” by Delena Tull and Edible Plants of Florda.) Young leaves can be cooked and eaten. Older leaves can be used to make a healthy tea to drink or to use for skin treatment (in a shampoo for example).