Tobacco (N. rustica)
Citation: Jason. "Rustica Harvest: Be Wary: An Experience with Tobacco (N. rustica) (exp2276)". Erowid.org. Apr 10, 2001. erowid.org/exp/2276
Oil of Approximately 30 leaves, absorbed through skin
I have grown rustica tobacco for experimental puposes as well I sell medicinal herbs on my small country farm. My first harvesting experience was a little surprising. Some apothicarians wait until the whole plant has begun to turn yellow on the stem and then harvest the arial parts while my instinct told me to harvest the upper parts (leaves, stem, blooming flowers) as they were in full bloom. As with all herbs, I waited until the sun hit the plant for a few hours to dry off the dew and encourage oily resins to rise to the leaves. Upon harvesting I noticed that the resin was coming off on my bare fingers. After a few minutes (say 10 to 20) I began to feel a little light headed, and entered a zone or level of conciousness that seemed distanced from my suroundings. The world took on a two-dimensionality like a sharp image placed in front of my face. I experienced photo-sensitivity and could not look at bright things. Being familiar with many different states of conciousness from various herbs over the previous 2 years helped me recognize the signs of the change caused by the herb.
Instantly, I decided to wash off the oils on my hands knowing that over dosage can cause vommiting and halucinations. As I tried to make my way back to my house (70' away) I noticed my legs were feeling rubbery and I felt like I was starving (lacking energy, shaking hands, etc). Then my steps felt like I was walking on clouds or flying (that may be misleading). I made my way inside, washed my hands with soap and water very well, grabbed some fruit and juice and desperately tried to restore my energy and physical strength.
I sat in a chair for maybe half an hour and felt physically terrible yet pleasantly detached. Then my stomach violently began tightening and I willed myself to the toilet where I purged via diarhea what my poor body was unexpectedly introduced with. A bit of sleep and a little food later I was mostly back to normal that evening. I have also heard of people mistaking rustica for lettuce in the garden and serving it to guests in a salad. They had similar reactions as I have described.
The lesson to be learned here is wear impermeable gloves if harvesting rustica and be mindful of dosages when taking internally. I smoke small amounts as a ritual (1cm x 1cm of leaf). Understand that the powers of herbs are strong and need not be de-centering to be effective or enlightening. Shamans of the America's have long used rustica as a divinitory and healing ally. As for my case, I unwittingly had a clear introduction to rustica and its ability.
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