Herb latin name: Laportea bulbifera

Family: Urticaceae (Nettle Family)

Edible parts of Laportea bulbifera:

Young leaves - cooked. Very nutritious, they are used like spinach. Some caution should be observed when harvesting this plant since the raw leaves have stinging hairs. It is perfectly safe to eat the leaves when they are cooked, however, since heat completely destroys the sting.

Description of the plant:


60 cm
(2 feet)

Habitat of the herb:

Woods in mountains all over Japan.

Other uses of Laportea bulbifera:

A fibre is obtained from the stem, it is used for making nets, cordage etc. Up to 50 times stronger than cotton.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - sow spring in a cold frame. When they are large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Division in spring. Very easy, larger clumps can be replanted direct into their permanent positions, though it is best to pot up smaller clumps and grow them on in a cold frame until they are rooting well. Plant them out in the spring.

Cultivation of Laportea bulbifera:

Woods in mountains all over Japan.

Medicinal use of the herb:

None known

Known hazards of Laportea bulbifera:

The leaves have stinging hairs, much like stinging nettles to which they are related.

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.