Common Names: Nasturtium
Latin Name: Tropaelum majus
Parts Used: Whole plant
Cultivation: Nasturtiums are tender perennials native to South America. In the North they are grown as annuals, in moist, well-drained soil in full sun.
Companion Planting: Grow nasturtiums near your tomatoes to keep away whiteflies. Nasturtiums also repel squash bugs and many cabbage pests.
Culinary Uses: Nasturtiums are edible; toss the leaves and flowers in salads or use the flowers as a garnish. They have a peppery flavor.
Medicinal Uses: Nasturtiums are a potent anti-microbial agent. They are useful intreating respiratory infections such as bronchitis, as well as viral infections such as influenza and the common cold. Use it fresh as a poultice for external infections.
Common Names: Nettle, Stinging Nettle
Latin Name: Urtica dioica
Parts Used: Flowers, leaves, and shoots
Cultivation: Nettles grow wild and will happily sprout anywhere you don't weed.
Culinary Uses: Believe it or not, nettles are actually edible--the sting disappears when it is cooked! Steam or boil them lightly and serve with butter and lemon; or add to soups, stews, and broth for added flavor and nutrition. Nettles are an excellent source of Vitamin C.
Magickal Uses: Nettles remove curses and protect from evil. Use in purification baths--cook first!
Medicinal Uses: Nettles are an excellent tonic for strengthening the entire system. They are astringent and may be used to stop bleeding such as nosebleeds or excessive uterine bleeding. And nettles (here's another surprise!) are specific for the treatment of eczema, especially childhood eczema.
Cautions: Harvest nettles wearing gloves; they cause a painful stinging which can linger for days! (Yes, experience talking here!)
Common Names: Nutmeg
Latin Name: Myristca fragrans
Parts Used: Seeds
Cultivation: Nutmeg is a tropical evergreen tree growing in the Spice Islands.
Culinary Uses: Use in baking quick breads and desserts. Add a pinch to cream and cheese sauces, and, of course, toss it in eggnog.
Magickal Uses: Make a good luck charm by stringing together whole nutmeg, star anise, and tonka beans. Add ground nutmeg or nutmeg essential oil to prosperity mixtures.