National Be Nice to Nettles Week

Only in Britain, as we say. First there was Apple Day, then Potato Day and now it's nettles. This week the much maligned stinging and boring looking nettle gets its day of glory. On May 27, Nettle Day is being celebrated at a farm in Devon, where one can lunch on nettle and chestnut risotto, or nettle pasta as well as playing some nettle-themed games such as nettle safaris (wear long sleeves, please). We have missed the Taste of the Wild Food walk where we could have learned about food foraging and picked our own. But dandelion salad, nettle tea, and nettle cheese are other gourmet natural treats to be enjoyed (or endured?). Nettle soup seems to be the most popular recipe but there are some others for avid cooks. Did you know: 40 species of insect including colourful butterflies nestle in the nettle. The stinging hairs of the nettle developed as a defence against grazing animals. So effective are they that few grazers will touch them, making them a safe haven for insects. Nutritionally it is an excellent source of calcium, magnesium, and iron. :: Be Nice to Nettles Week

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