As a rule, I’m better with autumnal activities than with summer ones, but I think I’ve come up with something that might be fun!
As a kid, I used to go blackberry picking every summer. They used to grow in almost every hedgerow in North Wales, and they provided us with a huge supply of apple and blackberry crumbles, jams and trifles. Of course, blackberry-picking is still an option, but now that I live in an urban area, they’re not as easy to come by. Nettles are plentiful though!
Nettles grow on ground that has been disturbed, such as old building sites, pathways and even by canals. They’re everywhere! The trick is however, to avoid nettles that grow beside the roadside, as they tend to be contaminated by exhaust fumes. So stick to quieter areas.
When picking nettles take a pair of marigolds, or surgical cloves, or even normal gloves – anything to protect you from the stingers! Cut the nettle-tops at an angle with a pair of scissors (cutting at an angle encourages plant growth, apparently), and store your picked nettles in a carrier bag.
Once home, wash the nettles thoroughly. Keep your gloves on whilst doing this however, as the sting will remain until the nettles come into contact with hot water.
Here are a few recipes to try once you have your foraged plants!