Here in Ireland there are nettles all around.
It’s great to be able to make a plant food that costs you nothing.
All you need to do is pick a bunch of nettles.
Some people say to pick only young leaves and remove from stems etc.
I can understand doing that if you are making nettle tea to drink but if you’re not, then that’s just a load of extra work and I don’t need any more of that.
Besides, the nettle tea seems to work just as well when you chop the whole plant up!
Put a lid on the bucket.
Or, you can use an old paving slab as a lid, like I do – to stop the rain diluting your nettle tea or the wind blowing it away.
The nettles I use are stinging nettles.
They grow everywhere here, even under a railway sleeper as you can see above. And yes they do sting, so wear gloves.
After a couple of weeks brewing in the bucket the nettles will turn brown and stink!
This is how you know the nettle tea is ready.
Now, nettle tea at this stage is strong stuff so you need to dilute it.
Use 10 parts water to 1 part nettle brew.
Your diluted nettle tea should be more like the colour of the tea you drink than the darker brown colour of your undiluted brew.
USE NETTLE LEAVES AS A MULCH
In Ireland nettles are regarded as weeds but in other countries people actually buy them.
Like I said up there, nettle tea is strong stuff so don’t put it on younger plants as it might be too much for them.
I do hope your plants enjoy their cup of tea.
Mine certainly do well on it and I find it especially good for encouraging raspberries to produce more fruit.
There’s more about stinging nettles and their uses here.
Bye for now.
MORE FROM MY GALWAY GARDEN
If you like your eggs fresh go see hens ducks and all things fowl.
For flower power visit my post on growing flowers
For butterfly lovers visit ‘the butterfly garden.’
If like me, you are interested in permaculture read this.