Plant of Week 12: Lambs Quarters
Lambs quarters is a common weed in backyard and gardens. It grows about 3-5 feet tall, and has a red-tinted grooved stem with diamond-shaped, toothed leaves. Lambs quarters is also sometimes called wild spinach because of its variety of culinary uses.
HABITAT: Lambs quarters grows well in areas where the soil has been disturbed by human activity, and can be found in most areas of North America, Asia, and Europe.
IS IT EDIBLE?: Both the leaves and seeds are edible and packed with nutrients, similar to its cousin- quinoa! The seeds have been eaten for thousands of years in regions of Europe and Asia. The greens can be eaten similarly to spinach- raw, in salads, steamed, or sautéed.
IS IT MEDICINAL?: Tea made of lambs quarter leaves has been used traditionally to treat inflammation, stomach aches, and loss of appetite. The tea can also be used externally to heal skin irritations. Soaking in a bath of lambs quarter tea is said to support skin by toning and tightening tissues.
Always seek advice from a professional before using a plant medicinally.