Contents 1 Description 2 Species 3 Ecology 4 Uses 4.1 Use as food 5 In folklore 5.1 Myths about health and wealth 5.2 Literature 5.2.1 Asian 5.2.2 Caribbean 5.2.3 European 6 References

Description[edit] This section does not cite any sources. Please help improve this section by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. (August 2013) (Learn how and when to remove this template message) Urtica species grow as annuals or perennial herbaceous plants, rarely shrubs. They can reach, depending on the type, location and nutrient status, a height of 10–300 centimetres (3.9–118.1 in). The perennial species have underground rhizomes. The green parts have stinging hairs. Their often quadrangular stems are unbranched or branched, erect, ascending or spreading. Most leaves and stalks are arranged across opposite sides of the stem. The leaf blades are elliptic, lanceolate, ovate or circular. The leaf blades usually have three to five, rarely up to seven veins. The leaf margin is usually serrate to more or less coarsely toothed. The often-lasting bracts are free or fused to each other. The cystoliths are extended to more or less rounded. In 1874, while in Collioure (south of France), French botanist Charles Naudin discovered that strong winds during 24 hours made the stinging hairs of Urtica harmless for a whole week.[2]

Species[edit] Detail of a male flowering stinging nettle. Detail of female flowering stinging nettle. A large number of species included within the genus in the older literature are now recognized as synonyms of Urtica dioica. Some of these taxa are still recognized as subspecies.[3] Species in the genus Urtica, and their primary natural ranges, include:[citation needed] Urtica andicola Webb Urtica angustifolia Fisch. ex Hornem. China, Japan, Korea Urtica ardens China Urtica aspera Petrie South Island, New Zealand Urtica atrichocaulis Himalaya, southwestern China Urtica atrovirens western Mediterranean region Urtica australis Hook.f. South Island, New Zealand and surrounding subantarctic islands Urtica cannabina L., Western Asia from Siberia to Iran Urtica chamaedryoides (heartleaf nettle), southeastern North America Urtica dioica L. 1753 (stinging nettle or bull nettle), Europe, Asia, North America Urtica dioica subsp. galeopsifolia Wierzb. ex Opiz (fen nettle or stingless nettle), Europe. (Sometimes treated as a separate species Urtica galeopsifolia.) Urtica dubia (large-leaved nettle), Canada Urtica ferox G.Forst. (ongaonga or tree nettle), New Zealand Urtica fissa China Urtica gracilenta (mountain nettle), Arizona, New Mexico, west Texas, northern Mexico Urtica hyperborea Himalaya from Pakistan to Bhutan, Mongolia and Tibet, high altitudes Urtica incisa Poir (scrub nettle), Australia, New Zealand Urtica kioviensis Rogow. eastern Europe Urtica laetivirens Maxim. Japan, Northeast China Urtica linearifolia' (Hook.f.) Cockayne (creeping or swamp nettle), New Zealand Urtica mairei Himalaya, southwestern China, northeastern India, Myanmar Urtica massaica Africa Urtica membranacea Poir. ex Savigny Mediterranean region, Azores Urtica morifolia Poir. Canary Islands (endemic) Urtica parviflora Himalaya (lower altitudes) Urtica peruviana D.Getltman Perú Urtica pseudomagellanica D.Geltman Bolivia Urtica pilulifera (Roman nettle), southern Europe Urtica platyphylla Wedd. China, Japan Urtica procera Mühlenberg (tall nettle), North America Urtica pubescens Ledeb. Southwestern Russia east to central Asia Urtica rupestris Sicily (endemic) Urtica sondenii (Simmons) Avrorin ex Geltman northeastern Europe, northern Asia Urtica taiwaniana Taiwan Urtica thunbergiana Japan, Taiwan Urtica triangularisa Urtica urens L. (small nettle or annual nettle), Europe, North America

Ecology[edit] Thanks to the stinging hairs, Urtica species are rarely eaten by herbivores, so they provide long-term shelter for insects, such as aphids, caterpillars,[4] and moths.[5] The insects, in turn, provide food for small birds, such as tits.[6]

Uses[edit] There is historical evidence of use of Urtica species (or nettles in general) being used in medicine, folk remedies, cooking and fiber production.[citation needed] Urtica dioica is the main species used for these purposes, but a fair amount also refers to the use of Urtica urens, the small nettle. Arthritic joints were traditionally treated by whipping the joint with a branch of stinging nettles, a process called urtication. Nettles can also be used to make a herbal tea known as nettle tea. Fabric woven of nettle fiber has been found in burial sites dating back to the Bronze Age.[7] Use as food[edit] Urtica, called Kopriva (коприва) in Bulgarian and Urzica in Romanian, is a popular ingredient in spring soups, omelettes, banitsa, purée and other dishes in Bulgaria and in Romania.[8] See also nettle soup

In folklore[edit] Nettles have many folklore traditions associated with them. The folklore mainly relates to the stinging nettle (Urtica dioica), but the similar non-stinging Lamium may be involved in some traditions.[citation needed] Myths about health and wealth[edit] Handmade soap with the extract of stinging nettle Nettles in a pocket will keep a person safe from lightning and bestow courage.[citation needed] Nettles kept in a room will protect anyone inside.[citation needed] Nettles are reputed to enhance fertility in men, and fever could be dispelled by plucking a nettle up by its roots while reciting the names of the sick man and his family.[citation needed] Literature[edit] Asian[edit] Milarepa, the great Tibetan ascetic and saint, was reputed to have survived his decades of solitary meditation by subsisting on nothing but nettles; his hair and skin turned green and he lived to the age of 83.[9] Caribbean[edit] The Caribbean trickster figure Anansi appears in a story about nettles, in which he has to chop down a huge nettle patch in order to win the hand of the king's daughter.[10] European[edit] An old Scots rhyme about the nettle: "Gin ye be for lang kail coo the nettle, stoo the nettle Gin ye be for lang kail coo the nettle early Coo it laich, coo it sune, coo it in the month o' June Stoo it ere it's in the bloom, coo the nettle early Coo it by the auld wa's, coo it where the sun ne'er fa's Stoo it when the day daws, coo the nettle early." (Old Wives Lore for Gardeners, M & B Boland) Coo, cow, and stoo are all Scottish for cut back or crop (although, curiously, another meaning of "stoo" is to throb or ache), while "laich" means short or low to the ground.[11] Given the repetition of "early," presumably this is advice to harvest nettles first thing in the morning and to cut them back hard [which seems to contradict the advice of the Royal Horticultural Society]. A well-known English rhyme about the stinging nettle is: Tender-handed, stroke a nettle, And it stings you for your pains. Grasp it like a man of mettle, And it soft as silk remains. In Hans Christian Andersen's fairy-tale "The Wild Swans," the princess had to weave coats of nettles to break the spell on her brothers.

References[edit] ^ Otto Wilhelm Thomé Flora von Deutschland, Österreich und der Schweiz 1885, Gera, Germany ^ (in French) Fabricio Cardenas, Vieux papiers des Pyrénées-Orientales, Orties inoffensives à Collioure en 1874, 7 May 2015. ^ "The Plant List: Urtica". Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew and Missouri Botanic Garden. Retrieved 6 September 2016.  ^ Butterflies of the nettle patch ^ "Moths of the Nettle Patch". Retrieved March 1, 2015.  ^ Nettles and Wildlife by Prof. Chris Baines ^ Gulsel M. Kavalali (2003), Gulsel M. Kavalali, ed., Urtica: Therapeutic and Nutritional Aspects of Stinging Nettles, Taylor & Francis, p. 13, ISBN 0-415-30833-X  ^ "Search for dishes using Kopriva". Retrieved 19 February 2016.  ^ Gtsaṅ-smyon He-ru-ka, Andrew Quintman, Donald S. Lopez, Jr. (2003), The Life of Milarepa, Penguin, p. 139, ISBN 0-14-310622-8 CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link) ^ Caribbean folktales ^ Dictionary of the Scots Language (online) Authority control GND: 4136380-2 Retrieved from "" Categories: UrticaUrticaceae generaEdible plantsTaxa named by Carl LinnaeusHidden categories: Articles with French-language external linksCS1 maint: Multiple names: authors listArticles with 'species' microformatsAll articles with unsourced statementsArticles with unsourced statements from August 2013Articles needing additional references from August 2013All articles needing additional referencesArticles with unsourced statements from October 2015Wikipedia articles with GND identifiers

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Stinging NettleTaxonomy (biology)EPlantFlowering PlantEudicotsRosidsRosalesUrticaceaeCarl LinnaeusGenus (biology)Flowering PlantUrticaceaeUrtica DioicaCaterpillarLepidopteraTortrix MothSyricoris LacunanaNymphalidaeVanessa AtalantaWikipedia:Citation NeededWikipedia:Citing SourcesWikipedia:VerifiabilityHelp:Introduction To Referencing With Wiki Markup/1Wikipedia:VerifiabilityHelp:Maintenance Template RemovalAnnual PlantPerennialHerbaceousPlantRhizomeAlternate LeafBractCystolithCollioureFranceCharles NaudinEnlargeStinging NettleEnlargeSynonym (taxonomy)Urtica DioicaTaxaWikipedia:Citation NeededChinaJapanKoreaHimalayaMediterranean RegionAsiaSiberiaIranUrtica ChamaedryoidesNorth AmericaUrtica DioicaEuropeAsiaUrtica Dioica Subsp. GaleopsifoliaCanadaUrtica FeroxNew ZealandArizonaNew MexicoTexasMexicoHimalayaPakistanBhutanMongoliaTibetUrtica IncisaUrtica IncisaAustraliaNortheast ChinaNew ZealandIndiaMyanmarUrtica MassaicaAzoresCanary IslandsUrtica PiluliferaRussiaSicilyTaiwanUrtica ThunbergianaTaiwanUrtica UrensTit (bird)Wikipedia:Citation NeededUrtica DioicaUrtica UrensArthritisHerbal TeaBronze AgeOmeletteBanitsaPuréeNettle SoupUrtica DioicaLamiumWikipedia:Citation NeededEnlargeWikipedia:Citation NeededWikipedia:Citation NeededWikipedia:Citation NeededMilarepaAsceticMeditationAnansiScots LanguageHans Christian AndersenThe Wild SwansTaylor & FrancisInternational Standard Book NumberSpecial:BookSources/0-415-30833-XGtsaṅ-smyon He-ru-kaInternational Standard Book NumberSpecial:BookSources/0-14-310622-8Category:CS1 Maint: Multiple Names: Authors ListHelp:Authority ControlIntegrated Authority FileHelp:CategoryCategory:UrticaCategory:Urticaceae GeneraCategory:Edible PlantsCategory:Taxa Named By Carl LinnaeusCategory:Articles With French-language External LinksCategory:CS1 Maint: Multiple Names: Authors ListCategory:Articles With 'species' MicroformatsCategory:All Articles With Unsourced StatementsCategory:Articles With Unsourced Statements From August 2013Category:Articles Needing Additional References From August 2013Category:All Articles Needing Additional ReferencesCategory:Articles With Unsourced Statements From October 2015Category:Wikipedia Articles With GND IdentifiersDiscussion About Edits From This IP Address [n]A List Of Edits Made From This IP Address [y]View The Content Page [c]Discussion About The Content Page [t]Edit This Page [e]Visit The Main Page [z]Guides To Browsing WikipediaFeatured Content – The Best Of WikipediaFind Background Information On Current EventsLoad A Random Article [x]Guidance On How To Use And Edit WikipediaFind Out About WikipediaAbout The Project, What You Can Do, Where To Find ThingsA List Of Recent Changes In The Wiki [r]List Of All English Wikipedia Pages Containing Links To This Page [j]Recent Changes In Pages Linked From This Page [k]Upload Files [u]A List Of All Special Pages [q]Wikipedia:AboutWikipedia:General Disclaimer

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