Urtica urens, Small nettle, Dwarf stinger, Dog nettle,
Hebrew: סרפד צורב, Arabic: حريق

Scientific name:  Urtica urens L.
Common name:  Small nettle, Dwarf stinger, Dog nettle
Hebrew name:  סרפד צורב
Arabic name:  حريق "Horreiq"
Plant Family:  Urticaceae, סרפדיים

Urtica urens, Small nettle, Dwarf stinger, Dog nettle, احريق,סרפד צורב,פרחים בישראל, תמונות

Life form:  Therophyte, annual
Stems:  Up to 60 cm high, branching from base
Leaves:  Opposite, entire, dentate or serrate
Inflorescence:  Racemes, usually not exceeding the petioles, fe-flowered axillary clusters, with numerous female and few male flowers, both present on the same inflorescence
Flowers:  Green, petals absent
Fruits / pods:  Achenes elliptic, flattish, 0.9-1.1 x 0.7-0.8mm; light-greyish or pale-brown
Flowering Period:   January, February, March, April, May, June, July, December
Habitat:   Nutrient-rich soils, ruderal
Distribution:  Mediterranean Woodlands and Shrublands, Semi-steppe shrublands, Shrub-steppes, Deserts and extreme deserts
Chorotype:  Med - Euro-Siberian
Summer shedding:  Ephemeral

Israel Flowers, Nature, Travel
Location, Jerusalem, Getsemane


Derivation of the botanical name:
Urtica, uro, I burn, alluding to the nettle's sting; stinging nettle. Their capability to sting makes them useful for metaphors.
In the Bible three different Hebrew names are quoted: Sirpad (סרפד)- in Isaiah 55:13; Seravim (סרבים)- in Ezekiel 2:6; Harul (הרול)-Zephaniah 2:9. They are synonyms, the roots s-r-f and h-a-r both meaning 'scorching' or 'burning'.
urens, Latin urere, to burn, and refers to the stonging hairs.
  • The standard author abbreviation L. is used to indicate Carl Linnaeus (1707 – 1778), a Swedish botanist, physician, and zoologist, the father of modern taxonomy.
  • The Romans used the Urtica for "urtication", beating with nettles to encourage blood to the surface, which they did to keep themselves warm and to relieve the pain of arthritis.
  • Dioscorides (ca. 40-ca. 90), the ancient Greek physician, advocated this nettle and its relative, Urtica dioica, as a treatment for festering wounds, nosebleeds, and delayed menstruation.

    In the following old children's rhyme, "Hitty Pitty" means Nettles.
    Hitty Pitty within the wall,
    Hitty Pitty without the wall;
    If you touch Hitty Pitty,
    Hitty Pitty will bite you.

    Bible resources:
    1. Isaiah 55:13
      Instead of the thornbush will grow the pine tree, and instead of briers the myrtle will grow.
      This will be for the LORD's renown, for an everlasting sign, which will not be destroyed.
    2. Ezekiel 2:6
      And you, son of man, do not be afraid of them or their words.
      Do not be afraid, though briers and thorns are all around you and you live among scorpions.
    3. Zephaniah 2:9
      Surely Moab will become like Sodom, the Ammonites like Gomorrah—
      a place of nettles and salt pits, a wasteland forever.

    Israel Bloemen, Natuur
    Location, Jerusalem, Getsemane