The stinging nettle (a.k.a.Urtica dioica) is a perennial plant native to Europe, North America and Asia. In India, they used Himalayan Stinging Nettle (a.k.a. Urtica Parviflora). It has been introduced to many other parts of the world. Urtica can tolerate hot temperatures if the soil has sufficient moisture. The plant is erect, growing up to 150 cm high, with a firm and fibrous stem.
Urtica is dioecious which means that there are female and male plants. The white-green flowers are small and inconspicuous. The plant genus Urtica is known for its stinging hairs which can cause painful skin irritations. Because of its widely spreading rhizomes, the plant can be found in large colonies.
As a nitrogen-loving plant, it thrives on heavy, fertile and nutrient-rich soil, preferably in full sun. In East Africa the native Urtica massaica is used to produce the preparation; in northern India, the indigenous Urtica parviflora is used.
Description of the plant: Rich in iron. Barbs have formic acid which helps act as a good pesticide or insecticide when made into liquid manure. Grows well under shade and in temperate weather conditions.
Effect on Plants: Mediates iron which is important for plant chlorophyll and helps strengthen the plants. Also provides a certain quantity of magnesium and sulfur. Nettle and cow urine serves as a good insecticide, especially for aphids and mites. The liquid manure should only be two days old. Because of the formic acid present, it is very good for humus formation.
Medicinal Value: Consumed as a soup rich in Iron (Fe). Leaves stimulate liver activity.
Cultivation practice: Propagation: vegetative can also be done by seed. Separate roots and plants. Planting: The rhizomes are planted in rows and covered with 5 cm of soil; distance between rows: 25 – 30 cm. Cultivation in descending Moon air/light sign. Plant in Aug/ Sept. Distance between plants in rows: 20 – 30 cm, 3 rhizomes per spot. Sowing: The seeds are sown in seed trays. Sprinkle with a little bit of soil, but do not cover the seeds. Germination occurs after 5 – 12 days. The germination rate is very low, averaging just over 50 – 60 %.
HOW TO HARVEST STINGING NETTLE?
Wearing protective gloves is recommended. Nettles are harvested at the beginning of the flowering season, preferably on a sunny morning. The plants flower progressively from below upwards. Scissors, sickle or scythe can be used for cutting.
The plants can be cut above yellow or spotted leaves. Thicker stems decompose poorly. It is therefore recommended to remove the leaves from the thicker stem and to use only the upper soft parts of the plants.
Alternatively, the upper 30 – 40 cm of the plants can be harvested and cut immediately. If the nettles cannot be used when fresh, they can be dried and stored until use. Drying ratio: 6:1 After cutting back to soil level plants sprout again vigorously.
THE MAKING OF BD504
- Moisten the dried Stinging Nettle leaves and knead them gently.
- Stuff the nettle into unglazed clay pots firmly and evenly. No animal organ is needed.
- Place the pot into the pit prepared with the opening facing upwards and put a cover lid over the opening.
- Bury in good soil at the end of September.
- Surround the pot with fertile soil or compost.
- Mark the pit with dates and detailed labels. This preparation remains in the soil for a whole year. When planning the quantity, one should take into account that very little substance remains after one year.
HARVESTING THE BD504
In Malaysia, the preparation is harvested after 12 months.
- Dig up the preparations. Only a small amount of nettle is left. Extra care must be taken to ensure that it is not mixed with soil.
- It must be stored in a cool and dark place, preferably in a wooden box with double walls from all sides. It can be filled in jars, glazed earthenware pots, ceramic vessels or glass containers. The vessels must not be airtight. The preparation should be stored alone and surrounded by a layer of dry peat or coco peat of at least 5cm thick.
Summary Of BD 504-STINGING NETTLE Preparations
|Conveys intelligence to the soil, helps proper decomposition, aids chlorophyll formation, and stimulates iron, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur bacteria activity in the soil.