Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica L.)

Stinging nettle is a perennial herbaceous plant of the nettle family (Urticacaea). Other names: zhguchka, strekava, zhigala


A perennial dioecious herbaceous plant with an elevated straight, unbranched, obtusely four-sided stem covered with burning hairs with a creeping branched rhizome. Leaves opposite, on petioles, ovate-cordate or broadly lanceolate with a heart-shaped base, long-pointed at the apex, coarsely serrate at the edges, covered with burning and simple hairs; burning hairs contain a poisonous liquid that causes burns. Nettle flowers are small, green, inconspicuous, collected in balls that form inflorescences – earrings (from pistillate flowers) and ears (from staminate flowers). The flowers are unisexual: staminate with 4-separated within the flower bed and 4 stamens, pistillate also with 4-separate within the flower bed, but its two inner lobes grow with fruits. The fruit is a one-seeded, light gray nut. Blooms from June to September.

Harvesting, description of raw materials:

In medicine, nettle leaves are used – Folium Urticae, which are collected during the flowering of nettles, trying to avoid admixture of stems. To do this, the leaves are cut off with gloved hands or the plants are mowed and, after wilting, the leaves that have lost their pungency are cut off with bare hands. Dried in the shade. The raw material consists of leaves up to 17 cm long, the color is dark green, the smell is peculiar, the taste is bitter-herbaceous. Impurity determinant1. The leaves are oval, with serrated edges. The plant is an annual or the leaves are ovate, ovate-lanceolate or lanceolate. Perennial plant. Stinging nettle (Urtica urens L.)2. The leaves are dark green with clearly visible whitish, coarse hairs pressed against the leaf blade – Stinging nettle (Urtica dioica L.) 3. The leaves are green or light green with fine soft hairs – white lamb, deaf nettle.

Contains active substances:

Nettle leaves contain vitamins K, C, B2, B6, carotene, a lot of chlorophyll, urticin glycoside, tannins, etc.

Medicinal use:

Nettle leaves are used in the form of infusion and liquid extract as a hemostatic agent. Chlorophyll extracts are used in the manufacture of mint tincture. In folk medicine, an aqueous decoction of the whole plant is used, which is drunk for headaches, a decoction of nettle herb with honey or sugar is drunk to improve the functioning of the heart, kidneys, for anemia, as a blood purifier, for gastritis, pulmonary tuberculosis, diseases of the liver, colds, they drink after childbirth, for whooping cough, a decoction of nettle roots is drunk for whooping cough, for any bleeding, a decoction of flowers for sugar disease, a decoction of herbs wash their hair, rub with grass for rheumatism, chest pain and dropsy. In folk medicine it is widely used and stinging nettle. A decoction of nettle grass is drunk with whooping cough, as a hemostatic, diuretic, with urticaria and nervous breakdown, shortness of breath, gastric diseases, rheumatism; with acne, boils, they drink a decoction and make lotions; for appetite, a decoction of nettle in milk is done for vomiting and stomach pains, a decoction of the roots for toothache; nettle roots infused with vodka are used for rubbing with rheumatism; raw grass rubbed with rheumatism; with pulmonary tuberculosis, uterine diseases.

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