Narcotic plants


(Echinocystis lobata)

In the early l960s several children in Ojai, California, began conversing with
nonexistent persons and showing other symptoms of severe hallucination. It was
learned that they had been nibbling on the seeds of wild cucumbers. This low
crawling vine of the melon family can be found growing among thickets along
the coastal slopes of California, Washington and Oregon, as well as in many
other places throughout the U.S. It has greenish-white flowers and a spiny,
green, oblong fruit containing four large seeds. There is no information
available at the present time as to the exact chemical nature of the
hallucinogens in wild cucumber (possibly lysergic acid amides), but they are
most effective when the seed is not quite ripe, around middle or late spring.
One seed should be a good experimental starting dose. Birds eat the seed for
food without any harmful results, but since its chemistry is still unknown so
are its possible dangers. The trip lasts for eight to ten hours and no harmful
side effects have been noted.


(Lobelia inflata)

The leaves of lobelia (also called "Indian tobacco") have a tobacco-like
taste.  For this reason they are often smoked as a cigarette substitute by
people trying to break the nicotine habit. When smoked as a joint, retaining
the smoke in the lungs, lobelia has mildly euphoric marijuana-like qualities
while conferring to the mind a great sense of clarity. Taken as a tea its
effect is even more pronounced. It has the unique ability of acting
simultaneously as both a relaxant and a stimulant, which results in a
dynamically altered mental state. Two heaping tablespoons of the leaves and
stems are simmered in a pint of water. The tea causes a prickly sensation in
the mouth and throat, which some find unpleasant. To circumvent this one may
prepare twice the dose and, after straining, reduce the tea by boiling until
only a dark, gummy residue remains.  This can be mixed with a pinch of the
dried leaves to give it substance and put into a large 000 size capsule. The
active principle of lobelia is a crystalline alkaloid called alpha-lobeline.
It is officially classified as a poison because it has a tendency in large
doses to induce vomiting. Lobelia has been used for centuries in herbal
medicine and has no real toxic history. Always take the tea or capsules on an
empty stomach.


(Piper methysticum)

Throughout the islands of the South Pacific for many centuries the root of a
shrub belonging to the pepper family has been used as a narcotic, mood
elevator and ceremonial beverage. when the Presbyterian missionaries forbade
its use it was largely replaced by alcohol. It is, however, still used on many
of the islands. Most scientific authorities agree that kava is a potent but
harmless narcotic. The most common way to use kava is to shave away the outer
bark from the root until the pale pink or yellow inner rhizome is all that
remains. This is cut into small pieces and two good mouthfuls of these are
thoroughly chewed and swallowed. In a few of the islands another method is
used which produces the most potent effect: (1) Shave up three heaping
tablespoons of the inner rhizome of fresh kava root (6 tbsp. if you are using
dried kava). (2) Boil these shavings for five minutes with one pint of water
in a non-metal or stainless steel container with the top covered. (3) Strain
off the liquid and put it in a clear glass container. (4) Put this in the
refrigerator for 24 hours. (In the islands it is sometimes left for several
weeks in cool streams). It is now ready to drink. Sip it slowly for the best
result. In about twenty minutes you will begin to feel peaceful and elated.
Perceptions will be heightened. Very sensitive people have been known to
hallucinate beautiful sounds and colors. When taking kava it is best to avoid
complicated matters, activity, wordy conversation and alcohol. With fresh
roots a trip will last about six hours; with dried roots much less. There are
no unpleasant long- or short-range effects from its use. It is not habit
forming. Islanders drink it about twice a week. Its psychedelic qualities are
due to C6-aryl substituted alpha pyrones: kawin, dihydrokawin, methysticin,
dihydromethysticin, yangonin and desmethoxyyangonin. If you live in Hawaii or
any of the islands or if you have friends there you would do best to use fresh
kava. If not dried kava can be ordered from THE MAGIC GARDEN HERB COMPANY (see
the end of this text).


(Argyreia nervosa)

The immature seeds of Hawaiian baby wood rose contain lysergic acid amides.
They also contain a small amount of strychnine (not enough to be injurious)
and several alkaloids. Dried wood rose stalks with seed pod clusters are
rather decorative and can be purchased inexpensively at many florists or
ordered from: Chong's Nursery and Flowers, P.O. Box 2154, Honolulu, Hawaii.
Four to eight seeds is the usual dose. Remove the seeds from the pod. The fuzz
which coats the seed contain a lot of strychnine and should be removed. This
can be accomplished either by scrubbing it off with a toothbrush or by
inserting a long needle into the seed and thoroughly singeing the outer
coating in a candle for several seconds. The seeds can then be thoroughly
chewed and swallowed or pulverized in a pepper grinder and put into large 000
size gelatin capsules. Wood rose seeds are best taken on an empty stomach. A
peaceful environment is important. You will probably enjoy the trip best alone
or with someone with whom you can have an undisturbing and quiet relationship.
Wordy people can be incredibly irritating. It takes about an hour to come on.
At first you will fell weak and lethargic. If you have a sensitive stomach you
may get nauseous for about fifteen minutes. If so sip a little warm water or
mint tea and allow yourself to vomit if necessary. Dramamine pills (available
at any drug store without prescription) may also help. After this has passed
you will feel very relaxed and peaceful yet very aware. This state of bliss
lasts for about three or four hours and is followed by a gradual descent to
normality except that you will probably feel unusually relaxed and mellow for
several days. If you wish to extract the lysergic acid amides from wood rose
seeds see pages 2 and 3 of The Marijuana Consumer's and Dealer's Guide.


(Ipomoea violacea)

The seeds of certain varieties of morning glories contain substances similar
to LSD. Between five and ten grams should be a good dose. It is best not to
buy these in seed packages as they are standardly sold. It is more economical
to purchase a five-pound sack from a feed and seed store. Also packaged seeds
are often treated with poison. Treated seeds may be cleansed by soaking them
in warm water for twenty minutes. The most hallucinogenic varieties are Pearly
Gates, Flying Saucers, Wedding Bells and Heavenly Blue. Some "glory heads"
prefer Pearly Gates to Heavenly Blue because they give the most dramatic
effects. If one simply eats the seeds, they will pass through the body
undigested and one will not get stoned. The best method of ingesting morning
glory seeds is one used by the Mexican Indians: run the seeds several times
through a pepper grinder. Then after soaking the seed mash in a glass of water
for about eight hours, the liquid is strained through a cloth and drunk.  The
LSD-like substances contained in morning glory are: d-lysergic and d-isolysergic
acid amides, lysergol,  chanoclavine, elymoclavine and ergonovine. They are
about one-tenth the potency of LSD. Three hundred seeds are about equal to 300 
micrograms of LSD-25. Pure LSD-25 can be synthesized from these amides.  Those 
wishing to extract these amides from morning glory (also Hawaiian wood rose) 
seeds are referred to pages 2 and 3 of The Marijuana Consumer's and Dealer's 
Guide,  where this process is described in detail. Two other types of morning 
glory which are even more potent than Ipomoea purpurea come from Mexico. These 
are Ipomoea violacea, known there as "badoh negro", and Rivea corymbosa or 


(Hydrangea paniculata grandiflora)

The leaves of one of America favorite garden shrubs, when dried and smoked,
will get a person quite stoned. But this practice could be dangerous.
Hydrangea leaves contain a chemical that belongs to the cyanide family. The
high derived from this is an example of subtoxic inebriation, in which there
is a fairly narrow margin between pleasurable and toxic doses. The greatest
dangers are either from smoking too much or too often. In the latter case the
body may not get rid of the poison as quickly as the user accumulates it.


(Valeriana officinalis)

The roots and rhizomes of this well-known garden plant contain a very potent
tranquilizer called valeric acid. Unfortunately they also have a very potent
odor. The tea, however, has at least a tolerable flavor. Boil 0.5 oz. for five
minutes in pint of water with the pot covered. If you do not wish to test
your tolerance with the taste of the tea, strain this brew and reduce its
volume by evaporation till a gummy residue remains. This can be rolled with a
pinch of flour an stuffed into a large gelatin capsule.


(Lophophora williamsii)

This small button-like cactus is a native of Mexico and the American
Southwest. Its major hallucinogenic alkaloid is mescaline, but it does contain
several other active substances including lophophorine, a convulsant;
pellotine, a sedative; and anhalonidine, a central nervous system stimulant.
Three to ten fresh or dried peyote buttons are chewed and swallowed after the
white fur has been removed. The first symptoms, which occur in thirty or forty
minutes, are perspiration, shivers, nausea and possible vomiting. This may
sound terrible, but a subtle alteration of consciousness has already begun
which usually makes these inconvenient symptoms seem not particularly
disturbing. In less than an hour these effects will have passed and the
psychedelic characteristics of the cactus will be active. These include
altered mental state, intensified audio and visual perceptions, and
hallucination of colorful patterns especially while eyes are closed or room is
darkened. The entire experience lasts about six hours. Because peyote has an
overwhelmingly bitter taste and a tendency to produce nausea numerous methods
of ingestion have been devised which circumvent the problem. Here are several:
(1) Run the buttons through a pepper grinder several times and put the ground
material in large 000 gelatin capsules. (2) While consuming the peyote drink
grapefruit juice. It neutralizes the bitterness. (3) Boil the ground-up
buttons in water for five hours. Strain off tea. By further boiling, reduce
volume of tea to a thick syrup which upon cooling will be a semi-soft gum.
This can be put into gelatin capsules. (4) Extract pure mescaline sulfate
crystals from the peyote using the process described in The Marijuana
Consumer's and Dealer's Guide. The shock of peyote
alkaloids on the system can be lessened by dividing the full dose into two
half doses which are taken thirty minutes apart. The laws regarding peyote
vary in different states. Federal law, however, maintains that under the Bill
of Rights 200,000 members of the Native American Church (mostly Indians)
may exercise their constitutional rights by using peyote as a sacrament. This
sanction has not been extended to other groups wishing to enjoy the same
"religious freedom." For sources of peyote see the end of this text.


(Trichocereus pachanoi)

This large columnal cactus is native to Peru, but is available in the United
States. Its main active ingredient is mescaline. It is, however, much larger
than the little peyote buttons, which are the best known source of that
alkaloid, so one can enjoy many turn-ons from a single plant. The correct
dosage is the same by weight as peyote. For sources of San Pedro cactus see
the end of this text.


(Coryphantha  macromeris)

This is a small cactus from northern Mexico. Its major active ingredient is
macromerine, which is a phenethylamine hallucinogen chemically related to
mescaline. Macromerine is only about one-fifth the potency of mescaline so it
is necessary to take two or three grams of the pure extracted alkaloid or five
times as much, in weight of the cactus, as one would of peyote. For sources of
Doña Ana cactus see the end of this text.


(Eschscholtzia californica)

When pot is scarce many West Coast people smoke the leaves and orange petals
of this common wildflower. It is not an opium poppy but it does contain some
unknown substance which offers a mild high lasting about 30 minutes. Although
there are no narcotic laws against its use, it is the official flower of the
State of California and is under protection. Persons caught picking or
mutilating this poppy are subject to fine.


(Sophora secundiflora)

This shrub of the American Southwest and northern Mexico bears dark red beans
which are hallucinogenic. Their psychoactive nature is due to the presence of
a toxic pyridine called cytisine. It has powerful psychedelic virtues, but
also it can cause nausea and convulsions, and in excessive doses it has been
known to cause an occasional death from respiratory failure. This bean was
once used in ritual by the Indians of the plains and northern Mexico, but it
was later replaced by a safer sacrament, peyote. The mescal bean should not be
confused with mescaline or with mescal, an alcoholic beverage made from maguey
plants. Experimentation with the bean is not recommended.


(Rhynchosia phaseloides)

These red beans and often the black ones of R.pyramidalis are similar to
mescal beans in both hallucinogenic qualities and dangers. These
characteristics are caused by a toxic indole or isoquinol. The Indians sell
these beans as ornamental beads at the marketplace in Oaxaca and usually warn
the customer of the danger of consuming them.


(Lactuca virosa et al.)

This species of wild, prickly lettuce and, to varying degrees, most other
types of wild and cultivated lettuce including common head lettuce (L. sativa
capita) contain lactucarium, a bitter alkaloid resembling opium in physical
properties. This substance, also called lettuce opium, was formerly used as a
sedative, but now it is, at least in the pharmaceutical world, largely
replaced by opium derivatives and synthetics. Informed heads, however, who
have had difficulty in procuring actual opium, have learned to extract its
sister substance from various members of the lettuce family. To accumulate
lactucarium take the entire wild lettuce plant and/or the bitter hearts and
roots of market lettuce, and run them through an electric vegetable juicer.
Extract as much juice as possible (at least a pint). Pour this liquid into a
porcelain or glass bowl and set it in the hot sunlight or under heat lamps
until the water has evaporated leaving a greenish-brown gummy residue. Scrape
this material from the bowl with a kitchen knife and use it as you would
opium. Never apply direct flame to opium or lactucarium as this destroys most
of the qualities. Instead, procure a Japanese-O-pipe at your favorite head
shop or send $1 to FLASH, P.O.B. 16425, San Francisco, California 94116 (add
25 cents for handling). Place a small piece of lettuce opium in the tiny brass
pipe bowl and, with the pipe pointed slightly downward so that the gum will
not go up the stem, heat the bowl over a candle, alcohol lamp, bunsen burner
or wooden match, and allow the flame to barely lick over the top of the bowl
until the "opium" begins to bubble and give of a white smoke or vapor. Inhale
this vapor and retain it in the lungs for about thirty seconds. Lactucarium is
not as potent as the very highest quality opium but you may be surprised at
its virtues. The name "head" lettuce may soon acquire a new and punful meaning
in the psychedelic subculture.


(Turnera diffusa)

Tea made from the leaves of this tropical American shrub (also found in Texas
and California) has been long known as a mild aphrodisiac and tonic for the
reproductive organs. Although it is a little harsh on the throat smoking it
will get you high. If it is smoked in a water pipe the harshness is
satisfactorily reduced. Fortunately it does not take much to turn you on. One
pipe load should do. The effect is about that of medium quality grass and
lasts about an hour to an hour and a half. It will get you even more stoned if
you drink the tea while smoking it. One tablespoon of damiana leaves should be
simmered in a pint of water for three minutes. Its taste is not bad, but it is
a little on the bitter side so you may want to add some honey. Available from
THE MAGIC GARDEN HERB COMPANY (see the end of this text).


(Myristica fragrans)

This well-known commercial spice is ground from the fruit of a tree grown in
the East and West Indies. Its mind-altering properties have been recognized
for centuries in India, and it has often been used by prisoners in the United
States as a substitute for other psychedelics and euphoriants which were not
available. Doses exceeding one teaspoonful take effect within two to five
hours, producing time-space distortions, feelings of unreality and sometimes
visual hallucination. Although some people thoroughly enjoy the trip others
have suffered ill feeling headache, rapid heartbeat and dizziness. The active
constituents of nutmeg are found in the aromatic oil. These are elemicin and
myristicin, both of which an phenylpropenes similar in structure to mescaline,
and the synthetics MDA and TMA. They are also present in mace, another common
spice. Because different lots of nutmeg and mace contain widely varying
amounts of the substance results of experiments are often inconsistent. If one
or two teaspoons of nutmeg produce no effect, dosage may be increased up to
about one gram for every two pounds of body weight; in other words no more
than one 1-3/8 oz. can for a average adult male. The peak experience lasts
from five to eight hours and is usually followed by drowsiness and sleep with
lethargic feelings lasting throughout the next day. WARNING: Epileptics should
not experiment with large doses of nutmeg.


(Amanita muscaria)

This poisonous, hallucinogenic mushroom is found in Europe, Asia and North
America. For many centuries it has been used as an intoxicant by the primitive
people of northeastern Asia. One large mushroom of the light red variety is
dried in the open air or in smoke and then eaten. The effect begins one or two
hours after ingestion. At first there is trembling and twitching followed by
numbness of the limbs. Then for a while good humor and contentment pervade.
After that hallucinations and foolish behavior occur. Sometimes the user
becomes red-faced and violent or suffers vomiting and diarrhea. Prolonged use
of the mushroom can be mentally debilitating. The psychoactive principles of
Amanita muscaria are muscazon, ibotenic acid and also muscimol, which has the
unusual characteristic of passing unaltered through the kidneys. In Siberia,
where the mushroom is costly, the poor often drink the urine of the rich to
get their highs. When at wild gatherings the initial intoxication begins to
dwindle, people drink their own and each other's urine to get a second high.
Unappealing though it may be to most of us, imbibing this psychoactive waste
product is the safest way to ingest Amanita muscaria because the poisons
muscarine and muscaridine have been metabolized and are not excreted. Small
agarics with numerous white warts are more potent and more toxic than the pale
red and less spotted variety. A North American species, Amanita pantherina
(panther caps), is more deadly than Amanita muscaria. One of the greatest
problems in using these mushrooms is that the margin  between effective and
lethal dosage is narrow. The correct amount varies with the individual so that
one man's dose could be another man's doom. Atropine is the standard antidote
for agaric poisoning. It is understandable when a poor Siberian gambles with
poisonous mushrooms since they are his only temporary escape from a grim
environment. But it is foolish for us to toy with these dangers when we have
such a wide selection of relatively safe psychedelic botanicals at our


(Cola nitida)

Kola nuts possess more stimulating effects than can be accounted for by the
amount of caffeine present in them. Like coffee beans they contain about 2
percent of the drug. The added punch is credited to the essential oil.
Africans believe that kola is an aphrodisiac for men and promotes conception
in women.  Western science reveals that it is an economizer of the muscular
and nervous systems and that it augments the combusion of fats and
carbohydrates in the body while reducing the combustion of nitrogen and
phosphorus. Two nuts is a good starting dose. These may be chewed and
swallowed or ground up and brewed as a beverage. One or two teaspoonsful of
honey brings out the delicious flavor of the kola oil.


(Peganum harmala)

This 12-16 inch herb, also called African rue, is found in India, the eastern
Mediterranean countries and on the treeless plains of Spain. Its seeds and
root contain the phenolic alkaloids harmine, harmaline and harmalol, which are
also the active ingredients of the Peruvian vine from which yage is made. The
substances are powerful stimulants and are capable of inciting wild visions.
The usual amount of pure alkaloids taken to produce such results is 300 mg. or
more. This is about the same dosage as mescaline, but the effects of
harmine and harmaline are far more striking. People traveling in the
Mediterranean countries, where Syrian rue is sold commercially as a spice,
have occasionally brought back a few of the seeds and raised them in
greenhouses. The plant enjoys a lot of sunlight. The seeds are sometimes used
in the U.S. and in Europe as a stimulant and to get rid of worms. Since it is
such a dramatic stimulant experimenters should be cautious with dosages. Ten
grams or so of the seeds or root should suffice to start. If this is not
enough the amount can be increased gradually. Syrian rue is a member of the
caltrop family, and is not related to any of the American or North European
rues. Recently a substance called 6-methoxytetrahydroharman, which is closely
related to the active ingredients in yage and Syrian rue and about one-third
the potency of harmine and harmaline, has been isolated from the hormone
secreted by the pineal gland (third eye) of man. This fragment of information
serves to remind us that the real source of natural and legal turn-ons exists
within ourselves.


(Cinnamomum Camphora)

Camphor eating was at one time a great fad in some circles. It acts as a
reflex stimulant by irritating the nerve endings. One gram produces a
pleasant, warm, tickling sensation on the skin, ecstatic mental excitation and
an impulse to move about. Two grams brings on thought floods, ego loss,
vomiting, amnesia, delirium and convulsions, all lasting for about three
hours with possible recurrence several hours later. Camphor tincture or
powdered camphor has occasional been added to grass and smoked. This gives
the grass a slightly stimulating effect. WARNING! Do not confuse genuine
camphor with paradichlorobenzine moth flakes, which are highly toxic.


(Corynanthe yohimbe)

This tree grows in the Bantu country of tropical West Africa. It is a member
of the Rubiaceae family, a group of medicinal plants which are rich in
alkaloids. The bark of the yohimbe tree contains the powerful psychoactive
alkaloid yohimbine. In small doses yohimbine acts as a hypotensive, that is,
it lowers tension and blood pressure. In slightly larger amounts is has strong
psychedelic effects. The bark also contains several other alkaloids including
yohimbiline, which, when reacted with hydrochloric acid, forms a potent
aphrodisiac substance called quebrachine (yohimbiline hydrochloride). To take
a yohimbe trip add six to ten teaspoons of shaved yohimbe bark to a pint of
boiling water. Lower heat and simmer for five minutes with pot dovered.
Strain and drink as a tea. This should make about two cups and is the
recommended dosage for one person. The tea should be taken on an empty stomach
and consumed within fifteen minutes. After about half an hour you will
probably begin to feel the first effects of the drug: a lethargic weakness of
the limbs and a vague restlessness similar to the initial effects of LSD.
Chills and shivers may also be felt, accompanied in some instances by very
slight dizziness and nausea (not as strong as is often the case with peyote).
After about fifteen minutes most of these feelings will have passed and the
psychedelic characteristics of the drug should begin to take effect.
Depending, of course, on the individual these may be a relaxed and somewhat
inebriated mental and physical feeling with intensified visual responses and
possible color flashes.  The trip lasts from three to four hours and leaves no
unusual after-effects other than a pleasantly relaxed feeling and occasionally
a running nose which should persist for no more than a few hours. There are no
indications of addiction or harmful long-range effects from the occasional use
of yohimbe. Shaved yohimbe bark is available from THE MAGIC GARDEN HERB
COMPANY (see the end of this text).


(Areca catechu)

In 1930 Louis Lewin estimated that there were about 200,000,000 betel nut
chewers in the world. The betel nut - more correctly called the betel morsel -
consists of a piece of areca nut from the areca palm tree (Areca catechu), a
betel leaf (Piper chavica betel), some catechu gum from a Malaysian acacia
tree (Acacia catechu) and a pinch of burnt lime. The exciting effect of the
betel morsel on the nervous system is mainly due to the oily volatile
arecoline contained in the areca nut. The lime helps to release the arecoline.
Arecoline causes increased salivation, excitation of the central nervous
system, more rapid respiration and decrease of the work load on the heart. If
the areca nut is unripe it will contain more arecoline and may cause dizziness
and inebriation. Unfortunately arecoline can also irritate the mucous
membranes of sensitive individuals and  produce liquid stools.  Catechol, the
oil of catechu - also called catechin - is a white crystalline phenol alcohol
which is distilled or extracted from the acacia. The betel morsel or areca nut
is held under the tongue and sucked on like a piece of hard candy. Areca nuts
with lime and catechu are available from THE MAGIC GARDEN HERB COMPANY (see
the end of this text). WARNING! Excessive use of betel morsels can 
eventually cause a dark red staining of the mouth and teeth.


(Humulus lupulus) A possible way to beat the marijuana laws.

The female hops plant contains a yellow powder which is chemically related to
cannabis resin (hashish). An old-time cure for insomnia was to sleep on a
pillow sack stuffed with hops. Unfortunately, in some highly sensitive
individuals this could cause dizziness, mental stupor and possible jaundice
symptoms. A safe method of using hops as a sedative is as follows: Steep 1 oz.
of hops in a pint of boiling water. Allow to stand for two hours and strain.
Take one tablespoonsful before each meal and before retiring. A more
interesting aspect of hops is that it is marijuana's closest relative.
Therefore it can be grafted to marijuana roots. This will produce hops which
are rich in cannabinol resins. Used like grass they will get you as high as
grass. It is impossible to say what the legal status of cannabinated hops may
be, because it has never been tested in the courts. There are many reasons why
it might be impossible for the authorities to prosecute such a case.
Furthermore it is unlikely that narcotic agents would ever discover hopped-up
hops since in appearance the plant does not resemble marijuana. For complete
and detailed instructions on grafting hops to marijuana roots see "The Super
Grass Growers Guide, A Handbook for High Power Pot Farming", by Mary Jane
Superweed. Ask for it at your friendly neighborhood head shop Or send $1 to
Stone Kingdom, P.O.B. 15304, San Francisco, Calif. 94115. Available after July


(Salvia divinorum)

This broadleaf sage of the mint family is native to southern Mexico, but it
can grow in the U.S. It is used by the Mazatec Indians when psilocybe
mushrooms are out of season. Its effect is similar to that of the sacred
mushroom but shorter lasting and less overwhelming. Fifty or more leaves are
thoroughly crushed in bowl. A pint of lukewarm water is poured over them and
they are allowed to steep for a few hours. Then the liquid is drunk and the
leaf mash can be chewed and swallowed. Visual hallucinations of dancing colors
and elaborate designs may be experienced as well as telepathic and clairvoyant
insights. Attempts to analyze the plant's chemistry have been unsuccessful,
probably because its components are unstable. The answer may add valuable
information to psychopharmacology. But until its chemistry is known it is
impossible to pass legislation against it.


(Coleus blumei and C.pumila)

These two species of coleus and all of their garden varieties have strong
psychoactive qualities. Although originally from Southeast Asia, they are now
familiar in the United States and Mexico as both indoor and outdoor plants.
They have a long history in folk medicine in the Old World, and have been
used for many years by the Mazatec Indians of Southern Mexico in the same
manner and for much the same effect as "Salvia divinorum". About fifty
of the brightly colored leaves are either chewed and swallowed, or crushed and
steeped in water which is later drunk. (See description of preparation under
"Pipizintzintli" above.) Like "Salvia divinorum", coleus is a member of the
mint family, so the psychoactive chemistry of the two plants is probably
identical or at least similar. Potted coleus plants are available at any
nursery or the seeds may be purchased from most packaged seed racks.
Considering the number of leaves required, it is far more economical to grow
your own from the seeds.


(Datura stramonium)

This plant, also called thorn apple, devils apple or stinkweed, grows wild in
many places including India, Mexico and the United States. It belongs to the
potato family (Solanaceae) and has dark green leaves and a large bell-shaped
flower. The entire plant is rich in several medicinal alkaloids: atropine,
scopolamine, mandragorine and hyoscyamine. The leaves of datura are often
smoked to relieve asthma symptoms. In India two or three seeds and some leaves
are added to ganga (cannabis) for an extra kick. It can, however, cause
blacking out and severe headaches. The brujos (sorcerers) of Mexico claim that
the leaves and stems of the local species, "D. meteloides", which they call
devil's weed, are for medicine, and the root and seeds for divinatory and
hallucinogenic purposes. But the flowers, they say, will drive a person mad.
The Yaqui Indian brujos extract a drink from datura by crushing the root in
water. Because the process is very involved it will not be discussed here. The
reader is referred to "The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge" by
Carlos Castaneda, Ballantine Books (paperback). The effects from datura are
pressure on the head, visual distortion, hallucinations and sleep. Smoking the
leaves produces euphoria. Although its influence is not so intense as that
from drinking the root extract, if done to excess it can bring on amnesia,
confusion and sluggish thinking. Datura and other Solanaceae contain tropeins
which are bad for the heart. Datura is not physically addicting but it can be
very dangerous. While one builds up a tolerance for the narcotic and
hallucinogenic substances in this herb and comes to require larger dosages to
produce the desired effect, one does not build a tolerance for the tropeins
and eventually they will do severe damage to the heart. And even the brujos
maintain that psychological dependence on the drug is a very real danger.


(Atropa belladonna)

This plant is the source of the drug belladonna, which is actually a
combination of atropine, scopolamine and hyoscyamine. The drug gets its name
from the Italian "bella donna", "beautiful lady", because since Roman times
women on the Italic peninsula have used it to dilate the pupils and make the
eyes appear brighter. The drug also has a long history in witchcraft,
medicine, and murder; and in recent years has been sold as LSD by unscrupulous
racketeers. It is strongly hallucinogenic, but it can have many unpleasant
side effects such as headache, intestinal cramps, loss of appetite and mental
stupor, if the dose is too large. The plant grows wild in many places
throughout North America.


(Hyoscyamus niger)

The leaves, seeds and rhizomes of this common plant are chemically similar to 
datura and are very rich in hyoscyamine, a drug which is similar to atropine, 
but twice as powerful in its effects on the peripheral nervous system. It 
causes fantastic visual hallucinations, and has been used by occultists to 
conjure demons. Its dangers are similar to those of datura. Even the sorcerers 
of ancient Europe agreed that excessive use of henbane can cause permanent 
insanity. The eaves of one variety of hyoscyamus are smoked in India and 
Africa for their inebriating effect.


(Mandragora officinarium)

Not to be confused with the New World mandrake or May apple (Podophyllum 
peltatum), this plant with its supposedly human-shaped root (actually the root 
looks like a parsnip) is the basis of many legends. It was a standard 
ingredient of witches' brews. The chemistry of mandrake is similar to that of 
datura and it is exceptionally rich in mandragorine, a powerful narcotic and 
hypnotic. Any of the dangers which have been expressed regarding datura are 
equally true  of mandrake.


(Nepeta cataria)

Because of its apparently happy influence on cats many humans have tried to 
devise a method of using this herb of the mint family which would give then a 
similar high. The tea is useful in folk medicine, but has no appreciable 
mind-altering properties. Smoked as a joint or in a pipe its effects are 
similar to a mild marijuana high. When it is mixed half and half with tobacco 
and used as a cigarette its influence is more intense and longer-lasting.  
Another successful method is to spray tobacco with the liquid extract 
(available from pet shops in a spray can) or to collect a small amount of 
extract in a glass and inject it into a cigarette. The active chemistry of 
catnip is in the volatile oil, but it is not yet certain which of the several 
oily constituents is responsible. Catnip burns rapidly and since it is weaker 
than pot larger quantities are required. WARNING: Tobacco is a harmful and 
addicting herb.


(Cytisus scoparius or Sarathamnus scoparius)

Heads seeking new highs or unable to score any pot sometimes harvest the 
yellow flowers of scotch broom, store them in a jar for two weeks or until 
they become moldy, dry them and smoke them as a joint. The plant, a native of 
Western Europe, is cultivated here but has escaped from gardens and is often 
found growing on hill slopes and in vacant lots. Its intoxicating properties 
have been known for many centuries because sheep which have nibbled on it are 
sometimes found in a state of stupor. Ingested the plant acts on the heart in 
much the same manner as red foxglove, the source of the cardiac stimulant 
digitalis. It causes excitation followed by unconsciousness or stupor. When 
smoked its effect is not so extreme - mostly stimulation and euphoria. Because 
of its effect on the heart it can be dangerous, and too much of it is 
definitely injurious.


(Calea zacatechicha)

This shrub of the Compositae family is said to be the most recent natural 
psychedelic discovery of science. It has, of course, been known and used by 
the Chontal Indians of Oaxaca for many centuries. They call it Thle-pela-kano, 
which means "the leaf of God", and employ it as a tea to clarify the senses.  
Steep two tablespoonfuls for five minutes in a pint of boiled water, strain, 
and sip slowly. The dried leaves can be purchased inexpensively at the 
marketplace in Oaxaca. Not much is known about its chemistry, but it appears 
to have no adverse side effects.


In recent years adventurous heads have come up with several interesting 
substitutes for grass and the other illegal highs. Smoking the dried scrapings 
from the inside of banana skins (mellow yellow) was a popular fad during the 
late sixties. Some experts believe that combustion converts some of the 
banana's chemistry into bufotenine (a DMT-like chemical), but since it takes 
three or four joints to get even a mild buzz there is much doubt as to the 
usefulness of this substance. The so-called Jackson illusion pepper (named 
after its discoverer) consists of a rotten green pepper with a cigarette in 
one end and a hole in the opposite end through which the entire contraption is 
smoked. It is said to produce colorful and elaborate hallucinations. Some call 
it a hoax, others credit the effect to deep inhalation of the tobacco smoke, 
but several scientists have stated that certain alkaloids in the rotten pepper 
are converted to bufotenine when contacted by the cigarette smoke and the 
heat. Warning! Tobacco is dangerous, addicting and deceptively legal. Some 
heads claim that they can get heavily stoned from smoking ZNA, a foul-tasting 
blend of dill weed and monosodium glutamate (Accent). Others say they have had 
a good trip smoking petunia leaves and also tomato leaves. This is possible 
since the petunia and tomato belong to the same family as tobacco and jimson 
weed. Peanut skins are supposed to be another smokable turn-on, but actually 
they taste unpleasant and have a very dull effect. Niacin (one of the B 
vitamins) has a pronounced result when taken in doses of about 100 mg. It 
causes prickly feelings of the skin and a strange, dizzy feeling for about 
twenty minutes. Powdered cinnamon can be smoked with parsley or mint flakes. 
It produces warm, tingling sensations all over the body followed by a 
stimulated and transparently aware sort of high. It seems to act as a mild 
irritant to the nerve endings similarly to camphor. Many Americans as well as 
Orientals swear that ginseng root has both stimulating and rejuvenating 
powers. Unfortunately most of the ginseng sold in this country (Panax 
quinquefolium) is not the same as the Oriental kind (P. schinseng), which is 
sold in some Chinatown sections under the name Korean Ginseng. The seeds of 
"Strychnos nux-vomica", the source of strychnine, have occasionally been 
ingested in minute quantities for their stimulating effect upon the spinal 
cord and cerebrum. In very exacting doses it has also been found to enhance 
the learning processes. But the margin between useful and dangerous (usually 
lethal) doses is very narrow. Wormwood (Artemisia absinthium) yields a dark, 
green-brown, bitter essential oil with strong narcotic properties. Although 
absinthe, an alcoholic beverage containing this oil, is illegal in this 
country, the herb itself is legal. The narcotic oil can be extracted with 
water or alcohol. Excessive use of this drug is said to be debilitating, 
however. Mormon tea (Ephedra nevadensis), a plant found in the semi-desert 
areas of the central United States, contains the well-known crystalline 
alkaloid ephedrine, a sympathomimetic which acts on the autonomic nervous 
system. Copious quantities of the tea have a peculiarly stimulating effect. 
Mexican locoweed (Astragalus mollissimus) is found in the prairie lands of New 
Mexico, Texas, Colorado, Montana and the Dakotas. Cattle which graze upon it 
display symptoms of temporary insanity. Prairie folk do not recommend it for 
humans. "Rauwolfia serpentina", also called Indian snakeroot, but not at all 
similar the American snakeroot, is the source of the powerful tranquilizer 
reserpine. It is usually sold only by prescription in this country. Other 
useful tranquilizing herbs are: musk root (Ferula sumbul) 2 to 4 tbps. 
simmered 5 minutes in 1 pint of water (fresh root preferred). Skullcap 
(Scutellaria lateriflora) 0.5 Oz. steep in 1 pt. boiled water and let stand 1 
hour. Horsetail (Equisetum arvense) steep 0.5 oz. in 1 pt. water (fresh plant 
preferred). German or Hungarian Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla) 0.5 oz. in 1 
pt. boiled water; steep and let sit 2 hours.  Asafetida gum (Ferula 
asafoetida) 0.5 tsp. in warm water. Passionflower (Passiflora incarnata) 0.5 
oz. steeped in 1 pt. boiled water. Strained passionflower leaves may be smoked 
for a mild (but very relaxing) high or as a tobacco substitute by unfortunates 
who are trying to recover from nicotine addiction. Its odor, when burning, is 
almost identical to that of marijuana.  Defense attorneys could make m use of 
it in pot cases in which the Defence attorneys could make much use of it in 
pot cases in which the police made their arrests on the basis smelling of 


Companies from which peyote, San Pedro and Doña Ana cacti may be ordered:

          Davis Cactus Garden, 1522 Jefferson St., Kerrville, Texas
             A. Hugh Dial, 7685 Deer Trail, Yucca Valley, Calif.

Because the laws concerning peyote vary widely from state to state it is best 
to check the laws of your state before procuring any of this cactus. Residents 
of California should not order peyote from out of state because packages 
containing plant material may be inspected at the state border. Those who wish 
to grow their own may order cactus seeds from New Mexico Cactus Research, 
P.O. 787, Belen, New Mexico:

                        Peyote seeds 10 for 25 cents
                       Doña Ana seeds 20 for 25 cents
                      San Pedro seeds 100 for 4O cents.

The following herbs can be ordered from The Magic Garden Herb Company, P.O. 
Box 332, Fairfax, California 94930. All herbs are priced at $1 per package 
(about the size of a large lid in most cases). Add 25 cents for handling.

Areca nuts with catechu (betel nuts), Kola nuts, Chamomile, Lobelia, Damiana, 
Mistletoe, Ephedra (Mormon tea), Musk root (Sumbul), Heliotrope (valerian),
Passionflower, Hops, Skullcap, Horsetail, Wormwood (absinthe), Kava kava, 

It is as natural for man to seek new highs as it is for spiders to spin webs.
Ultimately, however, we must learn that the true high is within ourselves, and 
that highs derived from any external source, whether it be malt, Milton or
marijuana, are only a clouded glimpse of the real thing. May the Breath of God 
be made known as our birthright.

                                PUBLISHED BY:

                              FLASH MAIL ORDER.
                              POST EXPRESS CO.
                            SAN RAFAEL, CA 94902

                                  -THE END-

Soon to be released by Cardinal Bastard:

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