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Natural Highs FAQ
by Anonymous
v 1.0 - Feb 2, 1993
Erowid Note: This FAQ was not authored by Erowid. It may include out-of-date and/or incorrect information. Please check the version date to see when it was most recently revised. It appears on Erowid as part of our historical archives. For current information, see Erowid's summary pages in the substance's main vault.


Authors :
Ecni Nisava,
Paul A. Houle,
Adam Boggs,
Petrus Pennanen
HTML and Layout:
© Erowid

Last Update: 2/2/93


The information presented herein is for ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES ONLY and can be found in ethnobotanical literature. Most (if not all) of the substances listed in this faq are illegal to ingest and/or possess. The authors and editors assume no responsibility should the information presented here be used, misused, misunderstood, inaccurate or even read. Reading this faq constitutes an agreement to these terms. If you are afraid you might be tempted to use any of the substances mentioned here in illegal ways when presented with the knowledge to do so, STOP READING NOW.

Many of the botanicals listed here are highly toxic and deadly. Always keep them away from children.

This faq may be reproduced verbatim, in whole or in part, by any means, and distributed freely by whatever means available, provided no charge is made for the copy and this disclaimer is included.


The following information was taken without permission from the book _Legal Highs_ by Adam Gottlieb, 1973, Twentieth Century Alchemist, from _The Botany and Chemistry of Hallucinogens_ by Schultes & Hofmann, 2nd Ed. 1980, from _The Audobon Society Field Guide to North American Mushrooms_ by Gary H. Lincoff and Carol Nehring, 1981, Random House, from _Narcotic Plants: Revised and Enlarged_ by William Emboden, 1979, MacMillan Publishing, from various mail-order greenhouse literature, from personal experiences of many people (friends of friends, and fictional characters that exist only in the authors' and editors' imaginations) and (mostly) from alt.drugs. Some sections contain a "References" section if the author of that section felt like going to the trouble; some mention references on the fly in the text, and some are just unreferenced. Some personal correspondance is included too; in this case if I could get the author's consent I included his name/email address; if I could not track down the author, I included the mail anonymously. If the author of a particular piece of mail doesn't want it included, I won't include it (although I may paraphrase it without attribution).

I left minimal header information in the stuff that was pulled from the net to give credit where due and to provide follow-up paths (do so at your own risk). I didn't have the time (let alone motivation) to mail everyone whose comments are included here to see if it was alright to include them, but if the info was posted to the net once, I can't see a problem with putting it in a faq. A later version might have more eloquent and concise attributions.

Much of the net stuff was edited extensively in that irrelevant info was deleted from specific posts; however, the context and spirit of the remaining information was preserved.

The substances listed here are arranged in a fairly straightforward format. If a certain section is missing from a certain substance, it means that I had no information to put in that section or it didn't apply. The substances are ordered alphebetically, sorted according to Botanical Family name, then Genus name, then (if necessary) Species name. This was a completely fascist decision on my part, and I did it only because it was the easiest ordering to maintain. Note that the name given in the heading is a common name and has NOTHING to do with the way the list is ordered.

At the moment I haven't got time to organize this stuff anymore than it already is (and that's not much). Hopefully in the future I will find time to organize and index it, and to expand it to include dozens of other natural highs. Until then, this mess will have to do.

Spelling errors are numerous and rampant, and I take no responsibility for any of them even tho many of them are undoubtedly mine.


[Erowid Note: The section of the FAQ on MAO Inhibitors contains some inaccuracies. For more complete information about MAOIs, read Erowid's MAOI Vault and seek other sources.]

Some of the substances described in this file are MAO inhibitors; this information is provided under the "Interaction precautions" section for the substance in question.

MAO stands for MonoAmine Oxidase, an enzyme that breaks down certain amines and renders them ineffective. MAO inhibitors (MAOIs) are substances that interfere with the action of monoamine oxidase, leaving the amines intact. Inhibiting the action of monoamine oxidase can produce a variety of effects, some of which are dangerous.

It may be dangerous to combine different MAOIs with each other or to combine them with other chemicals such as strong stimulants (amphetamine, MDMA), SSRIs (Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft, Celexa, Desyrel, etc), and many other pharmaceuticals. If you are taking a prescription drug that is an MAOI, avoid using contraindicated drugs or substances.

There are also a number of common foods and beverages which contain amines that are normally broken down by MAO. If you are taking a prescription MAOI, consult your physician to see whether you should avoid any of these. Substances that may interact with certain MAOIs include:

  • sedatives
  • tranquilizers
  • antihistamines
  • alcohol
  • amphetamines (even diet pills)
  • mescaline
  • asarone
  • nutmeg
  • macromerine
  • ephedrine
  • dill oil
  • parsley oil
  • wild fennel oil
  • cocoa
  • coffee (or any substance that contains large amounts of caffeine)
  • aged cheeses
  • any tyrosine-containing food
  • any other MAO inhibitor



baeocystis (Potent Psilocybe)
caerulipes (Blue Foot Psilocybe)
coprophila (Dung-loving Psilocybe)
cubensis (Common Large Psilocybe)
cyanescens (Bluing Psilocybe)
pelliculosa (Conifer Psilocybe)
semilanceata (Liberty Cap)
stunzii (Stunz's Blue Legs)
Amanita Muscaria (Fly Agaric), Conocybe smithii (Bog Conocybe) and Gymopilus spectabilis (Big Laughing Gym) are among the other mushroom species known to be hallucinogenic. However, Fly Agarics are classified as poisonous, and, according to _The Audobon Society Field Guide to North American Mushrooms_, the Fly Agarics that grow in North America cause "dilerium, raving, and profuse sweating", unlike their hallucinogenic Siberian counterparts. (Perhaps WOSD propaganda, I realize, but worth considering, at least for those of you who don't normally rave...)

mushrooms should NEVER be ingested unless positively identified to be non-poisonous by a mycologist. Often the only differences between highly toxic mushrooms and edible mushrooms are extremely subtle and require a great deal of training to distinguish. Also, several hallucinogenic varieties have been shown to be toxic to humans in medium to large doses.

Like most natural plant products, psychedelic mushrooms vary considerably in strength due to genetics, growth medium, and other factors. An effective dose of dried psychedelic mushrooms is on the order of 1 gram. This would be on the order of one or two whole mushrooms (best bet is to weigh them and make sure). Because strength varies widely, you should ask other people who have had mushrooms from the same source about the relative strength. For mushrooms from an unknown source, .5 grams of dried mushrooms is probably a decent place to start.

'Shrooms are best taken on an empty stomach. Carlos Castenada describes the effects of a mushroom-based preparation when smoked, and anyone who has taken 'Shrooms would agree that the effects that he describes are much more intense than the effects of reasonable dosages taken orally. Although many people think that Carlos made the whole thing up, it is possible that mushrooms are smokable and that smoked mushrooms might produce a different experience than ingested, because 'Shrooms contain many compounds known as tryptamines (as in dimethyl- tryptamine (DMT)) which are also psychoactive when smoked but not active orally. Other than Carlos, I've never heard of anyone else smoking mushrooms or mushroom products, so I can't vouch for the effects.

If you don't like the taste of 'Shrooms, it is also possible to consume a tea made by boiling mushroom fragments in water. The idea here is to sprinkle dried mushroom fragments on water and boil them until they sink, and then filter out the actual 'Shrooms and enjoy the tea.

The effects of psychedelic mushrooms are comparable to those of LSD, but different in a number of ways. For one thing, the trip lasts aproximately 6 hours, about half of what an LSD trip does. Mushrooms also have less stimulant effect than LSD. Mushrooms tend to be more visual than LSD and less auditory. LSD is probably better for enhancing perception of music, although psilocybin does alter the perception of sound (seems to make background noise louder) and like tryptamine- based psychedelics, also tends to induce auditory hallucinations that sound like 'noise'.

'Shrooms do have definite physical effects that are both similar and different to those of LSD. Shrooms tend to cause 'Liquid Breathing', especially before the onset of psychedelic effects. (Like LSD) Shrooms don't cause stomach cramps, but they do seem to cause a headache sometimes.

A short term cross tolerance does develop between pscilocybin, mescaline, and LSD, but there appears to be no long term tolerance, except for learned behavior which allows one, for instance, to learn how to talk somewhat coherently despite what psychedelics do to the language centers and short term memory.

Another important difference between 'shrooms and LSD is that the onset time of effects from ingestion is MUCH shorter. In the experience of people that I know, the onset of effects is aproximately 30-45 minutes after ingestion, and the transition from physical effects to mild depersonalization to intense hallucination is very short, even in the subjective time of the tripper. There is a period of aproximately one hour where psychedelic effects (visual/auditory hallucination, flickering of visual field, time overlay effect, time distortion, breakdown of linguistic centers, etc.) are VERY intense, and the rest of the trip seems to be more psychological, that is, very little hallucination, mostly depersonalization and time distorsion. This is a very excellent time to spend in a natural environment (your local woods, desert, or savanna) because it tends to produce shamanistic, in touch with nature feelings much better than LSD does.

Bad trips are very possible with mushrooms, and are probably very similar to bad trips on acid. If you know or suspect that a tripper is experiencing eyes-open visual hallucinations, you might want to take them to a place where no there are no regular geometric patterns that cover most of the visual field. High dosages of mushrooms seem to affect perception of regular tiled surfaces much more so than irregular surfaces. If possible, suggest to the tripper that you go to a place where there is a featureless floor (say a drab carpet or a concrete floor). It's also good to find a warm place, but always heed to the will of the tripper so long as he doesn't want to do anything stupid like jump off a cliff. See if you can find some mellow music that is pleasing to the tripper (Say, the Grateful Dead or Spyro Gyra) and remember that little things like turning the intensity of light up or down can have a big emotional effect. Be sure to ask about these things.

When talking to someone on a bad trip, it often helps to keep changing his train of thought; many people find that this keeps the anxiety at a lower level. The primary rule is to watch the reaction of the tripper to what you do, and take his needs and fears into consideration. Keep him with people that he trusts and try to remove any people that he doesn't trust. Of course, this advice is valid for hallucinogens in general.

The practice of growing mushrooms dates back to around 100 B.C., and is based partly upon the discovery of minature mushroom stones found near Gautemala City. Other finds further north also indicate an extensive mushroom cult in the early civilizations. When Cortez arrived in Central America, he found the natives using mushrooms as a sacrament. They called them "teonanacatl", or "God's Flesh." The Spainards reacted strongly to the mushrooms, giving written accounts of the loathsome mushroom rituals that "provoke lust... cause not death, but madness... and bring before the eyes wars and the likeness of demons." Teonanacatl was then banned from the church as contributing to pagan behavior and idolitry. The only tribe definately known to have consumed the mushrooms, however, is the Chichimecas. Six tribes consume mushrooms today in Oaxaca: Mazatecs, Chinantecs, Chatinos, Zapotecs, Mixtecs, and Mijes. It has recently been suggested that mushroom use by the Chol and Lacandon Maya may be a vestage from the earlier Mayans that disappeared for a time, and then was readopted. Present day ritual among them Mazatec includes many rituals from the Catholic Church. Even though the Catholics tried to eliminate the detested fungi, the Indians still chant saints of the church and incorporate litanies, which are undoubtedly post-Christian elements of their ritual.

Interaction precautions:
I wouldn't recomend using them with alcohol or other depressants. Also, people who are being medicated for a psychological conditions, particularly with MAO-inhibitor class drugs probably DON'T want to use 'Shrooms or any psychedelic because MAO-inhibitors tend to interact seriously with most psychoactive compounds.

Active Ingredients:
The primary active components of 'Shrooms are psilocybin and psilocin, which also is an immediate metabolite of psilocybin. There are a whole family of other tryptamine-related substances in 'Shrooms but most of them are not active when eaten.

For further reading:
Several books are available on the subject of growing mushrooms, which is a rather complex task because it involves maintaining a sterile environment and quite a bit of biology lab skills. The best book on the subject is "Psilocybin: The magic mushroom grower's guide" by Oss and Oeric from And/Or press. Spores are available by mail order; check High Times magazine. These are legal to sell because they contain no psychoactive compounds. Spores can also be obtained by taking a cap print from mushrooms that you obtain from another source, like the wild.

[some interesting info on Fly Agarics follows. Note that these are much more poisonous than psilocybe varieties, the info above does not necessarily apply to them, and the info below does not necessarily apply to psilocybes. --ED]

~From: (David A. Honig)
~Subject: Re: mail order botanicals
~Date: 11 Nov 91 22:00:34 GMT
Organization: UC Irvine Department of ICS
In article <> (Eli Brandt) writes:

>>anyone know the legality of fly agaric?  anyone have any experience with
>I'm sure it's legal.  _Merck's_ sez that neither ibotenic acid and muscarine
>were "controlled substances" (what a *dumb* term) as of '76; was there maybe
>a "Toadstool Regulation Act" I missed?  Anyway, you could call it "soma" and
>have a real good case for religious use...
>I don't know what the dose would be.  The LD-50 iv in mice for muscarine is
>0.23 mg/kg; ibotenic acid is (for mice/rats) 15/42 iv and 38/129 oral.  I'd
>be careful with anything with such a wide difference in toxicity between
>fairly similar species.  I vaguely recall that muscarine is only found in
>the younger shrooms; it looks like you'd want to avoid them, unless it's
>also responsible for most of the interesting effects.
>   Eli
I obtained some dried Amanita via an unnamed source.  They make you puke
(what else is new) and go into a dreamy state.  Not "psychedelic" or
terribly euphoric.  A friend (who is a botanist) has tried fresh ones,
reports that they're better.
IMHO, they're not worth your time unless your into ethnopsychopharmacology.
David A. Honig



gibbosum: Native to Argentina
leeanum: Native to Argentina, Uruquay

minor: Native to South Peru

diffusa (Peyote): Native to Mexico
williamsii (Peyote, Mescal,Chaute etc.): the classic Peyote, grows in north central Mexico and south Texas.

imbricata: Native to S-W USA to Central Mexico.
spinosior: Native to Arizona, New Mexico, Northern Mexico.

aselliformis (Peyotillo, Peyote meco): Native to San Luis Potosi, Mexico

tampicana: Native to Tampico, Mexico.

scandens: Native to Yucatan, Mexico.

coryne: Native to Northwestern Argentina.

cuzcoensis: Native to Cuzco, Peru.
fulvianus: Native to Chile.
macrogonus: Native to South America.
pachanoi (San Pedro, Giganton): Native to Peru, Equador.
peruvianus (Peruvian Fence Post): Native to Peru.
taquimbalensis: Native to Bolivia.
terscheckii (Cardon grande): Native to Northwestern Argentina.
validus: Native to Bolivia.
werdermannianus: Native to Tupiza & Charcoma, Bolivia.
Trichocerei are columnar, branched or candelabra like cacti, which usually grow very fast. Cereus is a different genus, whose members haven't been found to contain mescaline.

(from seed) Sow the seeds an inch apart on the surface of sterilized, moist, sifted cactus mix. The pH should be 4.5-6.5. Cover the tray or pot with an airtight plastic bag. Place in bright but indirect light for 12 hours a day at less than 30 degrees centigrade. Don't let the temperature get too high, and check to make sure the soil surface is moist, but not too wet. A fungicide may be needed.

Cactus seeds will generally germinate in 1-3 weeks. When the seedlings are about 2 cm tall (60-90 days for fast-growing species) transplant them to individual pots. Handle them very cautiously and use moist soil with pH 4.5-6.5 in the new pot. A good soil mix is 1/3 normal flower soil, 1/3 peat and 1/3 coarse sand or gravel. If you're growing a Trichocereus, water once a week with a concentration of a flower fertilizer normally used for flowering plants. Don't use standard plant fertilizers, as they contain too much nitrogen. Bright light is needed 12-18 hours a day, and the temperature should be 25-35 'C.

The easiest way of propagation is taking cuttings. Cut the mother plant with a clean and sharp knife leaving 5-10 cm of it above ground. Cut back slightly the edges of the cut to ensure that the new roots grow downward. Place the cutting in vertical position to dry for 2 weeks to a month depending on the size of the cutting. The compost where they are placed after this should be very slightly moist, not wet.

For more information about growing cacti read e.g. Cullman, B|tz & Gr|ner 1984: Encyclopedia of Cacti, Alphabooks A&C Black, ISBN 0-906670-37-3.

An easy method is to chop a cactus to small pieces, dry the pieces and boil in water with plenty of lemon juice until there's not much liquid left. To reduce nausea you should drink the liquid slowly over a half an hour while avoiding excessive movement. For the same reason don't eat solid food on the day of ingestion. A normal dose of mescaline sulfate is 200-400 mg, which probably corresponds to 10-25 g of dry Peyote or T. peruvianus, or 50-200 g of fresh San Pedro. Potency varies, so try a small dose first. It's also possible to extract mescaline from cacti.

Mescaline produces a trip very similar to LSD lasting about 12 hours. The effects take a bit longer to come on. Mescaline is cross-tolerant with LSD, psilocin and other psychedelics. A common side-effect is nausea, which is worse when ingesting Peyote than other cacti because of the extra alkaloids found in Peyote. If you manage to hold the cactus in your stomach for 15-30 minutes before throwing it up, you can still have a fine and nausea-free trip.

Mescaline does not cause chromosome damage in normal doses.

Peyote has been in use in America for at least 2000 years. The Spanish conquistadors didn't like the use of drug plants by the Indians, and catholic clerics declared officially in 1620 that since the use of peyote was the work of the devil, all Christians were prohibited from using it. The active prohibition of peyote still persists. A religious manual written in 1760 presented the following series of questions for the penitent:

Have you ever killed anyone?
How many have you murdered?
Have you eaten the flesh of man?
Have you eaten peyote?

Peyote was used for several centuries in Mexico before peyotism spread into the US in the second half of the 19th century. Today it's legal for the members of the Native American Church to use Peyote in several states.

The San Pedro cactus has been used by Peruvian folk healers to combat the supernatural elements that cause diseases.

Active Constituents (of some cacti)

Botanical namemescalineother alkaloids
Lophophorawilliamsii~1%dry Ann,And,Ant,Annd,H,L,P,T
Trichocereusperuvianus0.8%dry T
pachanoi0.1%wet Annd,H,T
bridgesii0.1% wet T
validus0.1% wet
macrogonus<0.05% wet T
terschecki<0.05% wet Ann
werdermann<0.05% wet T
taquimbal<0.05% wet H
cuzcoensis<0.01% wet T
Stetsonia coryne<0.01% wet T
Pelecyphora aselliformis0.00002% And,H,P

Mescaline content is probably given as hydrochloride, 128 mg mescaline HCl = 200 mg mescaline sulfate. Doses of mescaline are usually measured as sulfate. "Dry" means dry weight, "wet" fresh weight.

Ann = anhalonine causes paralysis followed by hyperexitability in rabbits
And = anhalodine stimulant, not potent
Annd = anhalonidine similar to pellotine
H = hordenine
L = lophophorine causes convulsions, similar to strychnine
P = pellotine causes drowsiness and slowing of heartbeat
T = tyramine

Agurell, S. 1969: Cactaceae alkaloids I. Lloydia 32,2
Agurell, S. 1971: Cactaceae alkaloids X. Alkaloids of Trichocereus Species and Some Other Cacti. Lloydia 34,2
Anderson, E.F. 1980: Peyote - the Divine Cactus. The University of Arizona Press, ISBN 0-8165-0613-2.
Pardanani, J.H. & McLaughlin, J.L. 1977: Cactus Alkaloids XXXVI. Mescaline and Related Compounds from Trichocereus Peruvianus. Lloydia 40,6


Materials are extracted in a juicer and eaten fresh or dried and smoked.

Mild sedative effect similar to opium. Very, very mild buzz, almost unnoticable. Not worth the hassle of obtaining from the plant, and not worth the cost of buying refined herb. Watch out for "incense" concoctions sold in head shops and through mail order that claim to have alternative uses. These are usually worthless, overpriced Lettuce opium preparations.

Formerly used in medicine as an opium substitute.

Active Constituents:
lactucin, lactucerol (taraxaxterol), lactucic acid

~From: ppennane@klaava.Helsinki.FI (Petrus Pennanen)
~Subject: Re: lactucarium
~Date: 8 Jul 91 20:24:16 GMT
Organization: University of Helsinki
Ronald Siegel writes in _Intoxication_:

"In each major category of intoxicant used by our species, there appear
to be one or two drug plants that researchers have noted are more
controllable, hence safer, than all the other plants or synthetics in
that category. [...] Among the narcotics, which include opium and its
derivatives, there is lactucarium, the smokable extract derived from
Lactuca Virosa."

"Consider the case of lactucarium, which never caught on as a
modern opium substitute because either so mild or so inconsistent in
quality that people thought it was a fake.

Lactucarium smells like opium and tastes just as bitter. When smoked
or swallowed, it is so mildly intoxicating it remains legal. There are
no visions like the ones De Quincey had from eating opium, but the
euphoria and dreamy intoxication last slightly longer. Although
lactucarium is structurally unrelated to the opiates, it will still
soothe irritating cough, ease minor pains, and help induce sleep, hence
its more common name of 'lettuce opium.' The history of lettuce opium in
America paralleled that of coca tea. Both drugs enjoyed widespread
medical use in nineteenth century and brief periods of experimental
nonmedical use in more recent years.

In the mid-1970s, smokable extracts of lettuce opium were marketed
throughout the United States under such brand names as L'Opium and
Lettucene. 'Buy your lettuce before they make it illegal!' announced the
national ads. Hundreds of thousands did exactly that when the craze
peaked in the late 1970s. There was not a single case of toxicity or
dependency. But there was a lot of competition as different
manufacturers rushed to get a share of the new market. Most of these
newer brands were made from ordinary garden lettuce, which lacked the
intoxicating lactucarium. Subsequently, sales fell, some suppliers of
real lactucarium went out of business, and the fad all but disappeared.
While lactucarium is still available, heroin users are not rushing to
buy it and probably never will: it's simply too weak."

Petrus Pennanen 


seed pods contain 4-6 seeds. Seeds are removed from pods and fungus-like coating is scraped or flamed off (author recommends scaping as much as possible and flaming the rest, as the coating can be thick and it's easy to end up turning the whole seed into a chunk of carbon if you just flame it). 4-8 seeds are chewed on an empty stomach (to minimize nausea). Seeds sold commercially are generally already removed from the pods. The seeds themselves resemble small chocolate chips, but are hard as rocks and have the coating mentioned above.

Nausea can be lessened by ingesting one or two dramamine 30 minutes to one hour before ingesting the HBW seeds. More dramamine can be taken after the nausea sets in, however, dramamine can be a DANGEROUS drug in high doses and its synergistic effects with LSA are unknown. Exceeding the recommended dosage given on the dramamine box is probably a pretty stupid thing to do under any circumstances.

If dramamine is not used, inducing vomiting when nausea starts will provide relief but effects will continue. You can also grind and soak the seeds in water, then strain them out and drink the water. If ground seeds are used, make sure they are fresh ground.

LSD-like effects, but less intense, with less visuals. Trip lasts 6-8 hours; tranquil feelings may last additional 12 hours. Sleep is deep and refreshing after trip, however some users may experience a hangover characterized by blurred vision, vertigo, and physical intertia.

Used by the poorer Hawaiians for a high. Shipping of these seeds became popular, as did a great controversy over the propriety of world-wide distribution.

Interaction precautions: same as for Morning Glory seeds.

Active Constituents:
D-lysergic Acid Amide and related compounds. NOTE: net wisdom has it that extracting LSA from woodrose/mg seeds is an inefficient way to obtain a precursor for LSD.

Hawaiian Large woodrose seeds supposedly have the same effect. Dosage is identical.


arborescens (Quauhzahautl): tree grows to 15' high. Native to Mexico.
carnea (fistolusa): bush with pink flowers native to Ecuador.
costata: native to australia.
leptophylia: wine colored flowers 3" across. Huge edible roots.
meulleri: native to australia.
murucoides: (Pajaro bobo) native to oaxca.
purpurea: native to mexico, common throughout N. America as an ornamental.
violacea (Tlitliltzin): sacred Mayan morning glory. Widely used for its psychoactive effects in the Heavenly blue, Pearly Gates, Flying Suacers and Wedding Bells strains.
5-10 grams of seeds can be ingested as follows:

  • thoroughly chew and swallow
  • grind and soak in water for 1/2 hour, strain and drink
  • sprout by soaking in water for 3-4 days (change water often), after which the white mushy part is removed from the shell and eaten. This is probably the best method for avoiding side effects, although I have I have reason to believe sprouting the seeds lessens their effectiveness.
Most commercially available Morning glory seeds are treated with chemicals to thwart consumption. Seeds are also sometimes treated with Methyl mercury to prevent spoilage. Chemically treated seeds can cause severe nausea, vomiting and diarrhea.

LSD like experience lasting about 6 hours, but with less hallucinogenic effects. Nausea is common even with untreated seeds. Less anxiety, less intensity than LSD in normal doses.

Nausea can be lessened by ingesting one or two dramamine 30 minutes to one hour before ingesting the MG seeds. More dramamine can be taken after the nausea sets in, however, dramamine can be a DANGEROUS drug in high doses and its synergistic effects with LSA are unknown. Exceeding the recommended dosage given on the dramamine box is probably a pretty stupid thing to do under any circumstances.

The Zapotecs used ipomoea violacea by grinding the seeds up and wrapping them in a meal cloth. They would then soak it in cold water and would find out information about the illness of a patient, a troublemaker among the people, or the location of a lost object.

Interaction precautions: should not be taken by people with a history of liver disorders or hepatitis. Should not be taken by pregnant women.

Active Constituents:
D-lysergic acid amide


pectoralis (var. stenophylla)
Waikas of Orinoco headwaters in Venezuela add dried and pulverized leaves of this herb to their Virola-snuff.


Active Constituents:
Intensely aromatic smelling leaves probably contain tryptamines.

Plants are available from ...Of the jungle for $35.

Anadenanthera (Piptadenia)
Black beans from these trees are toasted, pulverized and mixed with ashes or calcined shells to make psychedelic snuff called yopo by Indians in Orinoco basin in Colombia, Venezuela and possibly in southern part of Brasilian Amazon. Yopo is blown into the nostrils through bamboo tubes or snuffed by birdbone tubes. The trees grow in open plain areas, and leaves, bark and seeds contain DMT, 5-MeO-DMT and related compounds (Schultes 1976,1977; Pachter et al. 1959).

Active Constituents: DMT, 5-MeO-DMT and related compounds.

tenuiflora (== hostilis) "tepescohuite"
The roots of M. hostilis, which is *not* the common houseplant M. pudica ("sensitive plant"), contain 0.57% DMT and are used by Indians of Pernambuso State in Brazil as part of their Yurema cult (Pachter et al. 1959, Schultes 1977, Meckes-Lozoya et al. 1990). Bark of M. verrucosa also contains DMT (Smith 1977).

Active Constituents: DMT

Natives of western Amazon add DMT-containing leaves of the vine B. rusbyana to a drink made from B. caapi, which contains beta-carbolines harmine and harmaline, to heighten and lengthen the visions (Schultes 1977, Smith 1977).

Active Constituents:
leaves contain DMT.

The bark resin of these trees is used to prepare hallucinogenic snuffs in northwestern Brazil by boiling, drying and pulverizing it. Sometimes leaves of a Justicia are added.

Amazonian Colombia natives roll small pellets of boiled resin in a evaporated filtrate of bark ashes of Gustavia Poeppigiana and ingest them to bring on a rapid intoxication (Smith 1977, Schultes 1977).

The snuff acts rapidly and violently, "effects include excitement, numbness of the limbs, twitching of facial muscles, nausea, hallucinations, and finally a deep sleep; macroscopia is frequent and enters into Waika beliefs about the spirits resident in the drug."

Active Constituents:
Snuffs made from V. theiodora bark contain up to 11% 5-MeO-DMT and DMT. Leaves, roots and flowers also contain DMT.

viridis (psychotriaefolia)
Psychotria leaves are added to a hallucinogenic drink prepared from Banisteriopsis caapi and B. rusbyana (which contain beta-carbolines) to strengthen and lengthen the effects in western Amazon.

Active Constituents:
P. viridis contains DMT (Schultes 1977).

5 seeds $10 from ...Of the jungle, leaves are also available.

Meckes-Lozoya, M., Lozoya, X., Marles, R.J., Soucy-Breau, C., Sen, A., Arnason, J.T. 1990. N,N-dimethyltryptamine alkaloid in Mimosa tenuiflora bark (tepescohuite). Arch. Invest. Med. Mex. 21(2) 175-7
Pachter, I.J, Zacharias, D.E & Ribeir, O. 1959. Indole Alkaloids of Acer saccharinum (the Silever Maple), Dictyoloma incanescens, Piptadenia colubrina, and Mimosa hostilis. J Org Chem 24 1285-7
Schultes, R.E. 1976. Indole Alkaloids in Plant Hallucinogens. J of Psychedelic Drugs Vol 8 No 1 7-25.
Schultes, R.E. 1977. The Botanical and Chemical Distribution of Hallucinogens. J of Psychedelic Drugs Vol 9 No 3 247-263
Smith, T.A. 1977. Review: Tryptamine and Related Compounds in Plants. Phytochemistry Vol 16 171-175.


5-20 grams of ground nutmeg is ingested. Fresh ground is best. Can also be taken in a "space paste" concoction (see below). Space paste is difficult/expensive to make and tastes like shit; however, it may actually decrease the side effects.

Possible nausea during first hour; may cause vomiting or diarrhea in isolated cases. Takes anywhere from one to five hours for effects to set in. Then expect severe cottonmouth, flushing of skin, severely bloodshot eyes, dilated pupils. Personally I compare it to a very, very heavy hash buzz. "Intense sedation". Impaired speech and motor functions. Hallucinations uncommon in average (5-10 gm) doses. Generally followed by long, deep, almost coma-like sleep (expect 16 hours of sleep afterward) and feelings of lethargy after sleep. May cause constipation, water retention. Safrole is carcinogenic and toxic to the liver.

Nutmeg was a very important trade item in the 15th and 16th centuries. It was a precious commodity due to the enormous medicinal properties of its seeds. Slaves on the ships bringing nutmeg to Europe got in trouble for eating part of the cargo. They knew that a few large kernels of nutmeg would bring them a pleasant, euphoric feeling, and relieved their weariness and pain. Nutmeg was even used when the feeble King Charles II almost died of a clot or hemorrhage. His death a few days later did nothing to detract from its useful reputation. Rumor spread through London that Nutmegs could act as an abortifacient. The ladies who procured abortions from nutmeg were called "nutmeg ladies."

Interaction precautions:
MAO inhibitor

Active Constituents:
Methylenedioxy-substituted compounds: myristicin (non-amine precursor of 3-methoxy-4,5-methylenedioxyamphetamine [M-MDA]) elemicin, and safrole.

From The Net:

~From: (Michael G. Goldsman)
~Subject: Nutmeg Story
~Date: 11 Aug 91 23:56:07 GMT
Organization: Georgia Institute of Technology
Friday, a "friend" of mine decided to see what all the talk about nutmeg
was all about... here's what happened...
 8:15  -- "he" took 1 tablespoon of ground nutmeg...
 9:15  -- "he" took 1 more tablespoon of ground nutmeg...
11:15  -- "he" took still 1 more tablespoon of ground nutmeg...
As of now, "he"  didn't feel anything... "He" got the  beginnings of a buzz
at about 12:30 which gradually increased in intensity...
By 3 am or so, he compared it to moderate cannibis buzz
It peaked at at 5 am, and he then went to sleep.  
The effects continued through saturday afternoon and 
night, though not as intense as late friday night (or saturday morning
By sunday morning, the effects were totally gone.
The main point is, that except for lots of drowsiness, my "friend" never
suffered any of the ill effects that people have described ...
(such as nausea and headaches)
It was very comprable to a medium marijuana buzz. There were
no hallucinations, but maybe a larger dose is needed for this.
Next week my "friend" will go for 5 tablespons over the course
of a few hours.. Will he live to describe the experience??
~From: jeffty@sco.COM (Jeffery Tye)
~Subject: Space paste! (was Re: nutmeg as a hallucinogen)
~Date: Sat, 29 Jun 91 01:59:09 GMT
Organization: The Scantily Clad Orangutans, Inc.
'Space Paste'
heart chakra, but it's a legal high that will get you pleasantly
buzzed. :-)  DON NOT OMIT ANY INGREDIENTS. Trust me.
4 parts         nutmeg (ground from whole nutmeg)
4 parts         almonds (soak almonds overnight and rinse)
4 parts         *raw* pistachios 
2 parts         cinnamon
1 part          cumin
1 part          tarragon
1 part          oregano
1 part          basil
1 part          tumeric
1/2 part        cayenne pepper
1/2 part        black pepper
To taste:       Maple Syrup
One part equals 1/4 cup.
[if you want to make enough for about 500 people, that is.  Try 1 part=1
- Use only whole nutmeg. Not pre-ground.
- Grind up all ingredients with a spice grinder or food processor.
- Mix in Maple syrup until consistency of paste.
- Do not omit any ingredient, or it will NOT work.
Okay, you've gone this far, time to enjoy. The strong at heart will
spread some on toast. I like it blended in milk. It has a real strong
taste, so it's best to put it in the milk, fire up the blender, pour it
into a glass and chug it down in one gulp.
Start with two tablespoons. Effects begin in two hours. I've known
brave souls who take a cup at a time. Maybe that's why they disappear
for a couple of days.
~Date: Wed, 2 Oct 91 09:57:26 MDT
~Subject: More on Nutmeg Story
Begin forwarded message:
Well, I am recovering from a horrible experience.
Tuesday night about 10:30pm, I took 5 tablespoons of Nutmeg.
I am still hungover, almost 2 days later.
I got the initial stimulation, euphoria, but not much more than what one gets around 2 tablespoons. 
That was fine and dandy. I fell asleep at about 1:30am, with nothing psychedelic occurring yet.
I woke up at 3 am spinning, like I was drunk. I awoke again at 9am, and got out of bed. I had to: 
thirsty as hell, no saliva. I had wicked troubles walking, far too dizzy and -out-of-it-. Just like I 
had no control over my body. Also, any movement that I did make nauseated me.  By 9:30 I had my 
drink of water, and I collapsed on the kitchen floor, sleeping until noon. I thought that I would 
have something to eat, at that time, but was far too dizzy still to do anything.  By this time I was in 
a panic, thinking that I had comitted suicide, etc.etc. My body felt like it was melding with the 
floor; I also felt that my whole body was made of vomit. Quite odd. I crawled (literally) up to bed 
again and slept like a stone until 6pm. I managed to eat some stuff. I could stand for 30 seconds at 
a time, by this time.  I watched a movie, dozing on and off. I looked at myself in a mirror: horrible 
sight, very red sunken eyes etc.etc. Went to bed and awoke this morning at 11:30am.  Awoke with 
something like a horrible hangover. I feel like I have had a wicked flu yesterday and today.
Besides some odd physical sensations and perceptions, even this dosage was not overtly 
hallucinogenic.  I did not experience any colour / visual perception changes this time, like at the 
lower dosage. Perhaps I was just too sleepy to notice.
This experience was just downright gross.  I think I have given up experimenting with Nutmeg 
(and Mace) [ even though I really like the taste of the stuff. Some people complain they can't get the 
stuff down --- they must not be using fresh stuff].  It was really an offputting experience. Tonight, 
I think I am just going to hunt down something  illegal but safer.


6-10 teaspoons of shaved bark are boiled 10 minutes in 1 pt. water, strained and sipped slowly. Addition of 500 mg of vitamin C per cup makes it take effect more quickly and potently (probably by forming easily assimilated ascorbates of the alkaloids). Bark can also be smoked. Yohimbine hydrochloride, a refined powder version, can also be snuffed. Also available at many health/herb stores is a liquid extract.

Called "the most potent aphrodisiac known" and "the only true aphrodisiac". Whether aphrodisiacs exist outside of mythology or not is a topic for debate, as is the definition of "aphrodisiac". Anyway, first effects after 30 minutes (sooner with vitamin C) consist of warm, pleasant spinal shivers, followed by psychic stimulation, heightening of emotional and sexual feelings, mild perceptual changes without hallucinations, sometimes spontaneous erections. Some experience nausea during first 30 minutes. Sexual activity is especially pleasurable. According to one source "Bantu orgies have been known to last over a week" [Ed: don't they get hungry?]. Total experience lasts 2-4 hours, however, several experiences lasting up to 24 hours have been reported. Aftereffects include pleasant, relaxed feelings with no hangover, but difficulty sleeping for a few hours (probably largely due to the increased mental activity).

Since they sell the stuff in health food stores and I'm not sure what it's legitimate uses are, I'm willing to admit that I've tried it. My experience was worth repeating. This of course constitutes no endorsement on my part of illegal or legal drugs or of the use of yohimbe for any reason at all.

I ground about 7 teaspoons of shaved bark in a spice grinder (fresh grinding seems to help with release of the active ingredients) and then boiled it in a pint of water for about 10 minutes. The stuff absorbs a lot of water. Also, when freshly ground, you get some FINE FINE FINE particles. It took me a good 15 minutes to filter the stuff out through coffee filters (had to use a bunch of filters cuz it clogged them up so bad). The resulting brew was one of the top three worst things I've ever tasted in my life (the other two being calamus root and an abortive attempt at a kava kava concoction). It tasted kind of like bile. You can kill the taste if you put enough honey in the tea, but the aftertaste never goes away. As soon as you swallow it creeps up your throat; really gross. The fact that the stuff should be sipped slowly makes this even worse. I would recommend finding a REAL strong chaser, like pure lemon juice or maybe a mint leaf--something that obliterates all other taste in your mouth when you eat/drink/chew it, yet is tolerably pleasant tasting. I would swig/chew this chaser after every sip of yohimbe tea.

The active ingredients in yohimbe are mild MAO inhibitors. [see MAO Inhibitors above]

Anyway, I took the tea with vitamin C. About 20 minutes after I got done drinking it I felt some mild nausea (more in my throat than in my stomach), some mellow trippy effects (just mostly weird thoughts and vivid mental images--nothing near a hallucination, no LSD-like mind racing), also had some speedy effects (like being on 500 mg of caffeine--jitters, etc) and started getting a little "pressure" in the groinal region. To make a long story short, the nausea was a bummer, and sex was incredible. Yohimbe completely changes the meaning of the word "orgasm" for men, anyway. I have no idea what a woman's reaction to it would be.

The sexual effects lasted about 4 hours (only cuz I was getting tired :^); the speedy effects decreased earlier than that, but I couldn't sleep at all that night (even when I was ready to), and I'm sure it was because of the yohimbe.

I also recently tried the yohimbe extract that they sell in health food stores. The stuff costs about $7/oz. It comes in one ounce bottles with screw-on eye-dropper caps. Recommended dose on the bottle is 3-20 drops up to three times a day. First time I tried it I took 35 drops with absolutely no effects. Recently, I took 100 drops mixed in orange juice. The stuff is tasteless in minute quantities, but at 100 drops/~8 oz. of OJ, it added a mildly bitter taste. Not too bad, tho--1000x better than the tea. Anyway, it didn't do anything, so I took another 50 drops, then another 50, and still no effects whatsoever. I wonder if the extract is even active.

I would advise yohimbe experimenters to use the tea form, and start out with 4 or five teaspoons of fresh ground bark, as the effects of 7 teaspoons were quite pronounced in me, and I am a 200 lb. male with a high tolerance for everything.


Interaction precautions: MAO inhibitor.

Active Constituents: Yohimbine, yohimbiline, ajmaline. (Note that yohimBE is the plant; yohimBINE is one of the chemical principles found in the plant.)


~From: dyer@spdcc.COM (Steve Dyer)
~Subject: Re: Yohimbine bark
~Date: 18 Jul 91 02:17:32 GMT
Organization: S.P. Dyer Computer Consulting, Cambridge MA
Ecni Asked:
>Anyone care to enlighten us yohimbine-illiterate readers what yohimbine
>bark is and what it does?
Yohimbine is the primary alkaloid found in yohimbine bark.  It is an
alpha-2-adrenergic antagonist.  It blocks presynaptic inhibitory
synapses, meaning that it tends to increase central and peripheral
adrenergic activity.  It tends to cause nervousness and increases blood
pressure.  It also seems to be effective in some cases of impotence.
Steve Dyer aka {ima,harvard,rayssd,linus,m2c}!spdcc!dyer


fastuosa: large shrub with white flowers
inoxia (Don Juan's Datura): native to mexico
metel: native to India.
sanguinea (Eagle Datura, Tonga): Native to S. America.
stramonium (Jimson Weed): Dangerous hallucinogen widespread in temperate regions.
Other species: tatula, brugmansia, candida, suaveolens, arborea, aurea, dolichocarpa, vulcanicola, discolor

Leaves are sometimes smoked. Small amount of seed can be pulverized and added to drinks as in the Algonquin ritual.

described as "delerium". Leaves are hallucinogenic and hypnotic. Seeds cause mental confusion and delirium followed by deep sleep with colorful hallucinations. Excessive amounts are toxic. May cause blacking out and severe headaches. Yaqui indian brujos say it causes insanity. THIS SUBSTANCE IS GENERALLY CONSIDERED DANGEROUS.

discolor (Desert Thornapple): used by hopi shamans for divination.
inoxia: "Don Juan's Datura" is used in it's native mexico by Yaqui bruhos for divination
metel: Used by the Thuggee cult in it's native India to drug sacrificial victims to Kali.
sanguinea (Eagle Datura, Tonga): Used by Aztecs in the Temple of the Sun. Peruvian natives believe it allows them to communicate with departed souls.
stramonium (Jimson Weed): Dangerous hallucinogen widespread in temperate regions. Used by Algonquins in ritual drink called "Wysoccan" to introduce boys to manhood.

Active Constituents:
Scopolamine, atropine, hyoscyamine and other tropanes.

"Hyoscyamine and scopolamine possess specific anticholinergic, antispasmodic activity and elicit some central nervous effects as well. These effects usually consist of stimulation at low doses, depression in higher toxic doses. ... Intoxication with atropine or hyoscyamine is characterized by psychic excitation often combined with panic and hallucination. Scopolamine was found to produce a state of excitement followed by a kind of narcosis in which, in the transition state between consciousness and sleep, hallucinations sometimes occur (Heimann, 1952). These effects explain the addition of belladonna and other solanaceous plants as ingredients of magic brews in medieval Europe and of sacred medicines by the Indians of Mexico and South America."
(Schultes and Hofmann, 1980)

Family Solanaceae is the potato family (did you know potatoes have a lower LD50 than marijuana? It's true). Many members of this family contain tropanes and have a history of ritualistic use. Other commonly-used members are the Mandrake (Mandragora officinarum), Belladonna (a.k.a. deadly nightshade) (Atropa belladonna), Thornapple (Datura inoxia), Henbane (Hyoscyamus niger), and Iochroma. All these substances will be covered in more detail in a future version of this faq.

Kuthmithi (Withania somnifera) is one member of the Potato family that does not appear to contain active amounts of tropanes and is generally considered safe for use as a sedative.


~From: (Gerald Bryan (Denver))
~Subject: Re: Shrooms, Datura etc
~Date: 29 Aug 91 16:43:51 GMT
In article <> (Fie
nd) writes:
>    How many people have lasting physical damage from Datura?
I know one person who has used Datura.  She was an experienced drug user at
the time.  She said it gave her tremendous visions, but it took her a
year before she felt that her eyesight was back to normal.  She only used it
Two years ago, there was a story in the local paper about some college
students in Boulder who walked buck naked into a police station, totally
out of it.  They had apparently consumed some datura (on purpose) up in
the mountains.
~From: marsthom@coriolis.UUCP (marsthom)
~Date: 25 Sep 91 21:32:50 GMT
Organization: Albedo Communications
I ran across this citation while doing a computer search:
   Scopolamine intoxication as a model of transient global amnesia.
   Brain Cogn. 1991 Mar; 15(2): 236-45
   In Colombia (South America) during recent decades the administration of
   scopolamine, extracted from plants belonging to the Datura or Brugmansia
   genus, has become an important neurologic and toxicologic phenomenon.
   These extracts have been popularly known as "Burundanga." Chemical
   characteristics and clinical features of scopolamine intoxication are
   described. Anterograde amnesia and submissive behavior found in patients
   intoxicated with scopolamine are analyzed. Burundanga intoxication is
   related to other toxic phenomena found in different countries and
   similitudes with transient global amnesia are emphasized.
Datura seeds look like brownish hot-pepper or tomato seeds. They are flat
or lens-like disks, about 1/8 inch in diameter, with an irregular bulge
where the stem-scar is.  The intoxication from Datura and other plants in
that same group (the Nightshade family, "Solanaceae") is more of a delirium
than a psychedelic experience. The intoxication resembles that of a strong
dose of Mandrake tea, for instance. Other symptoms would be a dry mouth,
a wierd floaty feeling, and muddled thinking. The active substances in
Datura-like plants are also quite toxic and have been fatal on occasion.
~From: (Eli Brandt)
~Subject: Re: datura seeds...
~Date: 30 Sep 91 21:41:48 GMT
Organization: Harvey Mudd College, Claremont, CA 91711
_The_Botany_and_Chemistry_of_Hallucinogens_, Schultes and Hofmann, sez that:
{\it Datura metel}'s seeds have a total alkaloid content of 0.2 to 0.5
percent, mostly scopolamine.  More relevantly, D. inoxia is similar
in alkaloid content to D. metel.  You could look up the ED and LD for
scopolamine and calculate the appropriate mass of seeds.  You might want
to assume the alkaloid content to be significantly higher than 0.5%, just
to have a decent margin.  Remember, the LD takes precedence over the ED. :-}
I take no responsibility for any gruesome death which may be caused by the
above information.
   Eli Brandt