It seems that my “would be spinach” was mostly eaten by little white worms with ferocious teeth, so I took it upon myself to dig up some wild nettles that I spotted in the Castro neighborhood of San Francisco. They were growing next to a school playground in a small, dry patch of dirt that lined the chain chain link fence.
The nettle is such a hearty plant and, to be perfectly honest, I am in dire need of a resilient addition, like the city nettle, to my garden. In my estimation, the only tender thing that has taken to the place with any authenticity is the mint that quite bossily inhabits the lower bed. And it was there before me.
I am excited about the possibility of the nettles taking over an entire bed.
In my station wagon, I found a shoebox and some bottles of water left behind by guests that had ridden in the backseat. Since I already knew that I was toting around a few bags of seed starter soil mix, I had all the fixings to assemble a little “stay happy” cocktail for my new friends.
In this photo the nettles have not yet perked up, because I just transplanted and watered them.
When I returned from a delicious dinner at Hachi Ju Hachi in Saratoga Village, I checked on the nettles (which I kept in the car because it was quite cold last night) and they were doing incredibly well. Shortly afterwards, I encountered this banana slug that was enthusiastically waiting to greet me on the steps leading up to my house.
Here are the nettles this morning. Behind them, the intimations of an olde medicinal herb garden: starts of comfrey, St. John’s wart, myrtle, yarrow and mugwort.