Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Vicious Stinging Nettles

It's that time of year when I do battle with stinging nettles. They creep into my garden, hiding among the flowers and fruit, and seem to suddenly appear out of nowhere, fully grown, and towering over everything else.

The other day I set to work pulling up a couple of clumps that had grown out of their hiding place in two quince bushes that grow against a fence in my garden. Being an old hand at dealing with this perrenial weed, I wore long thick gardening gloves and started pulling. As well as the danger of being stung, the quince bushes are quite thorny, so I was very careful.

You can see above that they've just popped up through the quince, but by the time I see them they're pretty big and very vicious.
Here is a closeup of one of the leaves. Those fine hairs on the leaves and on the stems are what cause all the pain.
Despite taking very good care, I still got an extremely nasty sting on my arm just above the edge of the gardening gloves. I pulled too hard, too fast and too low down the stem, and the top of the plant whiplashed onto my bare arm. Ouch!

I may have been wounded, but look where the nettles ended up. Score so far: 1-1
Apparently they make a good and nourishing soup, but it would take a huge leap of faith for me to even try it.


Grumpy Old Ken said...

Very good. You put me to shame!

IcyCucky said...

They look so green, but like you, I wouldn't try to eat it in the soup either..

Donna said...

We have a few types of plants here too that have stinging barbs on them. And they hurt even through gloves! I'm with you - no way that I would make a soup out of them, LOL!

Anvilcloud said...

We have them around here although they were unknown to me until we arrived here a few years ago. Miserable things.

Jeanette said...

Those are some scary looking weeds. they also look familiar so we may have them here too.

♥Rosie♥ said...

Gosh i remember as a child getting lots of stings on my legs from these little devils!

Sally said...

OH, my gosh, I know that sting, it's horrible!!!! No soup for me either, Dee. :)