Calea is a small shrub of the family of the sunflowers, that grows in the highlands of Mexico and Costa Rica, in a region, where one can also find pines and oaks. Doesn’t tolerate frost, sun-loving, undemanding.
Use: 25 grams of the dried and ground leaves are soaked in 1/2 l of water. Drink the tea slowly/carefully. An alcoholic extract is also effective. A cigarette made from the leaves can be smoked additionally to enhance the effect. Commonly, the use of extracts is preferred, since the taste of other ways of intake is rather experienced as unpleasant.
Active constituents: This plant contains bitter principles, flavones and possibly an alkaloid. It is still unknown which of these substances are responsible for the psychic effects.
Effects: After about 30 minutes a feeling of tranquility and calmness; the heart beat is felt more clearly. The given amount of 25 grams clears the mind and the senses. A bit higher amounts lead among the Indians of the regions where this plant grows, to a sleep-like state, in which answers to questions of mundane or religious kinds are found in short intensive dreams. Tests with Caucasians also lead to dreamy states, that were experienced as unusually clear and lucid, and whose content was described as significant. Not psychedelic, but dream inducing. The effect does not occur reliably.
Side Effects: None are known.
Suppliers: Seeds and plants in the botanic trade, dried herbs in ethnobotanical stores. Sadly, it is not easy to get Calea zacatechichi to sprout.