Urtica dioica

protection, courage, banishing & binding
Mars, Fire & masculinity
Aries, Taurus, Scorpio, Libra & Aquarius
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Stinging nettles are aggressively defensive; they protect themselves. Because of this, they are perfect for use in protection spells or any magic that requires ample protection.

Nettles not only absorb negative energies & magic, but they also retaliate against them.

Nettles are also handy in the kitchen. It’s a highly nutritious plant that is also known for its medicinal properties. You can use its defensive capabilities to boost your immune system and heal your body.

Also used for banishing and binding; it disperses darkness and illness. Particularly useful for banishing fearing and invoking courage.

Can be used to get rid of unwanted spirits.

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Stinging nettles self-seeds in the fall and can spread easily. They do not need a lot of care, they just sort of grow. In many places they are abundant enough to be wildcrafted!

They will grow in full or partial sun and don’t mind frequent waterings. 

Do not harvest the first year; allow the patch to establish itself.

Use gloves & long sleeves when harvesting. The stinging hairs can leave a rash. they are not a great plant to grow with kids or pets unless you can keep them out!

This plant places boundaries and it comes with a great reminder for us to harvest mindfully.

Do not eat raw! Cooking or drying destroys the stingers.

If you do get stung, a paste of baking soda and water can ease the sting. Fresh nettle juice can calm the rash as well.

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Early spring nettle leaves make for the best tasting when using in the kitchen. Remember to always, always cook nettles before eating.

Entire aerial parts can be used fresh or dried as tea or cold infusion.

Tea made from stinging nettles is good for aching joints, urinary issues/infections, allergy relief & nursing mothers. 

Can be used in pesto or beer.

Dry and crush to use in incense. Dried, it grinds down easily into powder and can be added to cooking.

There are many ways to harness the healing powers of nettles. Burn to purify a sick room (or for banishment). The fresh root is an anti-inflammatory. Baths and facial steams with mint can help respiratory issues. Tinctures made from the root can be applied directly to the skin for joint pain.

Blood and Bones Vinaigrette and Tincture:

Take mugwort, chickweed, and nettles & cover leaves with apple
cider vinegar and let sit in a dark place for 2 weeks.
Shake every day.

The plethora of vitamins and minerals (including iron, vitamin C, vitamin A, calcium, zinc, and magnesium) seep out into the vinegar. This elixir wards off anemia and brittle bones. It makes an excellent vinaigrette and can be eaten on salads. Or it can be taken by the tablespoon as a tonic.

Fresh juice for a spring tonic can help with allergies, but can also cause them in other people.

Another way to ingest all these great vitamins & minerals is with a simple healing soup stock:

  1. Chop celery, carrots & onion into large pieces.

  2. Add veggies to a large soup pot with leftover chicken or turkey carcass & whole nettles.

  3. Flavor to taste with rosemary, bay leaves, garlic, thyme & salt.

  4. Bring to a boil and then let simmer for 2 hours.

  5. Strain out solid matter and freeze liquid.

Use the whole plant for a greenish yellow dye; dye made from the roots will end up more yellow.

Good for papermaking or making cordage/cloth. Nettles make a very durable cloth.

Cloth woven from nettles was once used for burial cloths.