This annual usually grows around 40-60cm in height. They are colonising plants that are usually found in disturbed or cultivated soil. They’re often a good indicator that your soil is high in nutrients, phosphorus in particular.
The leaves are covered in fine hairs which when touched, give a painful sensation.
The leaves are high in nutrients such as nitrogen, iron and magnesium. By cooking or drying the leaves, the toxic components are neutralised.
Nettle leaves are popular in teas and soups.
Nettle plants can be added to a compost heap or dug into the soil as a green manure crop or you can make a liquid fertiliser by placing them in water for a few days. Always dilute your end solution, 1 part concentrate to 10 parts water.