Happy Hump-day everyone and welcome to the first edition of Weed Wednesday!
This Wednesday we will be discussing a plant that you may have noticed pop up sometime around late April or early May. Their purple color immediately drew me in and I needed to know more about this plant. It has a purple tip and fades beautifully into green much like how colors would flow together if you used the gradient fill tool in Microsoft paint.
The Purple Deadnettle IS edible and can be used to make a tea. You might be thinking "EW, who would do that and why?" and the correct answer would be "Me!" and "For science!"
The little purple flowers that pop out are actually pretty sweet because of its nectar and the leaves taste minty. The purple deadnettle is actually in the mint family and that is revealed by its square shaped stem which it shares with peppermint, spearmint, and others. The leaves have a somewhat minty taste but have more of an earthy grassy taste than its mint cousins.
The deadnettle can also be brewed into a tea in order to release its health benefits (yes most herbs have health benefits). The tea tastes pretty much exactly like it smells, which could either be a good thing or a bad thing. The taste immediately brought me back to when I was a child playing recreational soccer. The tea had such a strong taste of sweet freshly cut grass with a hint of mint that my senses were reminded of running around a soccer field with my friends.
As for the medicinal properties of this herb, when consumed raw it can be used as an astringent, diaphoretic, diuretic, purgative and styptic. Brewing it into a tea releases more of the properties and helps promote perspiration and discharge from the kidneys . This herb can also be used as an herbal poultice which means you can mash the herb up and use it as a paste to rub on wounds or cuts to relive pain and inflammation!
Give it a try or call me a weirdo, the comment boxes are open and I would love to hear what you think about this segment. Thanks for reading!