Morning Glory is the collective name for more than a thousand species of psychoactive climbing plants and has been used for centuries as a sacred medicine. Among these species is the genus Ipomea and it contains about 600 species. The botanical name comes from the Greek and is an amalgamation of 'ipos', which means 'woodworm' and 'homoios', which means 'similar to'. The name is based on the winding character of the plant. It grows in tropical and sub-tropical areas of the world. The subspecies usually sold in Smartshops are Ipomea tricolor, or Mexican Morning Glory, and Ipomea violacea. There has been quite some confusion around the name of these two species, which are very similar. Ipomea tricolor can be annual or adult, depending on where it grows. She can't stand the cold very well, less than 5 degrees Celsius she won't survive. It contains beautiful flowers and for this reason it likes to be kept as an ornamental plant in gardens. The flowers are trumpet shaped and usually blue with a white to golden center. In the meantime the species has been cultivated further so that there are cultivars with flowers in different colors. Names for these species are 'Blue Star', 'Flying Saucer', 'Heavenly Blue', etc... The seeds of Morning Glory contain the psychoactive substances. The seed is obtained from the flowers, when they die a seed pod forms inside several seeds.
LSD-like effects of Morning Glory
The statue of the flower Prince Xochipilli, contains images of the most important sacred plants for the Aztec people. The statue dates from the 16th century. The prince is seated on a throne, which is decorated with tobacco plant (Nicotiana rustica), psilocybe mushrooms, Peyote and Morning Glory. This statue was discovered in the middle of the 18th century by Europeans.
The indigenous people of Mexico used the seeds of Morning Glory as an entheogen and as a sacrament. Its psychedelic action produces visual and auditory hallucinations, which can be compared to LSD. The Zapotec people of Oaxaca used Morning Glory as a sacred medicine and called the seed 'badoh negro', because of its black color.
In 1959 ethnobotanist Richard Schultes sent samples of a cultivated Morning Glory from Mexico to Albert Hofmann, the discoverer of LSD. He confirmed that the seed contained alkaloids that were very similar to those found in LSD. Ergot (Claviceps purpurea), or a fungus that grows on grain, is responsible for these ergot alkaloids. The seeds of Morning Glory contain several ergoline alkaloids. These powerful substances are responsible for the psychedelic effect. The most important substance, ergine, also called d-lysergic acid amide (LSA), is closely related to LSD. Actually, it is a precursor of LSD. However, the effects are much milder than LSD, which is about 50 to 100 times stronger. The effects are generally more calming and less stimulating than LSD. The seeds contain about 0.1% ergot alkaloids.
Because of these psychedelic effects Morning Glory gained popularity among psychonauts in the US. As an alternative to the illegal LSD a great interest arose in Morning Glory seed, which one can get legally. Since there are no Smartshops to promote safe use of entheogens, the seed is purchased through garden centers. To discourage its use, some commercial gardening companies started coating the seed with a poison that cannot be washed off. According to U.S. law, there is no obligation to draw the buyer's attention to the fact that the seed has been treated with a poison. These poisonous seeds are certainly dangerous in high doses and can cause various physical complications, such as severe diarrhea, nausea and vomiting, in the worst case even heart problems.
The difference between Morning Glory and Hawaiian Baby Woodrose
Like Morning Glory, the plant contains Hawaiian Baby Woodrose (Argyreia nervosa) LSA. The plants both belong to the Convolvulacea family. Hawaiian Baby Woodrose has a much less long (known) history of medicinal use and only became known in the 60's, because of its psychedelic effects. While Hawaiian Baby Woodrose has enough with about 3 to 12 seeds, Morning Glorly uses significantly more, about 50 to 400 seeds (depending on the desired strength of the trip and the method of ingestion). Hawaiian Baby Woodrose is less prone to the effects, it can take up to two hours before one begins to feel anything. Morning Glory takes less time. Of course it is important to keep track of when you last ate. In general, a trip with Hawaiian Baby Woodrose (six to 8 hours on average) takes less time than one with Morning Glory (up to ten hours). Of course this strongly depends on the dosage.
Use of Morning Glory
To achieve a powerful psychedelic experience one has to consume about 100 to 400 seeds. The seeds can be ground and processed into tea or infusion, or swallowed whole, where it is important to chew well. When the active alkaloids are extracted it is more likely that negative side effects, such as nausea, will not occur. The traditional method of preparation is to grind the seed and then soak it in cold water. Soak for about thirty minutes and then filter the most important substances should end up in the water. The first noticeable effects occur about an hour after ingestion, depending on the amount and time when you last ate. Another method used to minimize negative side effects is to 'sprout' the seeds in water. Change the water every day for 3 to 4 days. After this you have to remove the inside of the seed from the skin and eat it. It is important to mention that the effectiveness is also brought down a bit in this way and one may have to use more seeds.
A trip takes about 6 hours on average, to which a few more hours of after-effects can be added. As mentioned before, the effects are similar to those of LSD, but milder, generally less energetic and less euphoric. Many users experience a calm feeling and little need to exercise a lot. Whereas LSD usually gives a very clear trip with very clear visual effects and strong physical and mental energy, an LSA trip gives a more relaxed, introspective and peaceful effect. Often after the trip one has a longer lasting feeling of peace and tranquility and the sleep that follows is deep and refreshing. It also happens that a certain 'hangover feeling' occurs, this is usually due to the nausea.
In addition to the desired psychoactive effects, it is also possible that various side effects occur, including nausea. Although it is certainly not always the case, it is possible that at the beginning of the trip one has stomach problems and there is a chance of nausea and/or vomiting. According to several psychonauts, eating a light meal a few hours in advance can help to alleviate these side effects. Keep in mind that a trip with Morning Glory can take a long time, so it's important not to have any obligations on the day of the trip itself and it's best to give yourself a chance to rest the day after. The seeds of Morning Glory contain several substances that can cause a negative reaction in people with liver problems. Pregnant women should not use Morning Glory seeds either.
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