Urtica dioica: 6’ x indefinitely spreading / full sun to part shade / zone 4
This Eurasian native is named for the nasty little stinging hairs that cover it from head to toe. Harvest the shoots and leaves using gloves – steaming it for even a minute will neutralize the hairs, and you’ll be left with a delicious, vitamin-rich vegetable. It will spread widely if you let it, but cutting off the flowers or pulling out the stalks in the summer will slow it down. Also attracts beneficial insects and acts as a mineral accumulator.