If there’s one reason to convince you to wear gloves and long pants while gardening then here it is. This lush looking weed is one that really packs a punch.

Stinging Nettles are a very common weed in gardens. Often growing in rich garden soil. They love the extra nitrogen and potassium. This weed is very well named. The secret to its ‘stinginess’ lies in the fine hairs that cover the leaves and stems. When brushed. Each little hair is transformed into a needle that injects chemicals into the skin which causes a burning and stinging sensation.

Stinging nettles do have some positive benefits. They are edible and a rich source of vitamins A and C plus iron, potassium, manganese, and calcium. And it is often infused into a tea. The Romans used to rub their bodies with stinging nettles in winter to stop feeling cold. Ouch!

If you do touch a stinging nettle. First thing is don’t scratch the area. I know it is very hard but scratching will only push the hairs further in and it will get more painful.

Instead, run water over the area to help ease the pain. Let it dry then clean the spot with soap and water to wash off any stinging chemicals.

If you have a dock weed growing nearby, rubbing one of its leaves can also help reduce the pain.

Of course there are also commercial anaesthetic creams and sprays available from your local Chemplus Chemist that will also help.

I’d love to find out your remedy for taking the sting out of stinging nettles. Send me an email via www.inthegarden.net.au or post is on our facebook page. Look forward to hearing from you.






About The Author

In the Garden is an exciting new local South Australian TV program on Channel 9 this Summer & next Autumn showcasing the best ‘green’ stories this state has to tell. Check out the latest in garden trends, new plants and top tips to keep those gardens blooming.