Various species of grass contain alkaloids: Phalaris arundinacea, that can be found, among others, in Europe and in the USA, the South European grass Phalaris aquatica (=tuberosa) and the North African grass Phalaris brachystachys. All these grasses can also be cultivated in most western countries without any big problems.
Use: Extracts or the juice pressed from the grass are taken with Harmala-seeds or an extract prepared from these seeds. Highly concentrated extracts can be smoked.
Active constituents: DMT (N,N-dimethyltryptamine) and/or 5-Meo-DMT (5-methoxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine) and other tryptamines in strongly varying composition and concentration depending on the strain, phase of growth and growing conditions. Phalaris aquatica is said to contain up to 1 % DMT, as well as 5-MeO-DMT. Phalaris brachystachys supposedly contains almost only DMT in amounts that are worth mentioning but the exact values of its content are still missing. Most often 5-MeO-DMT dominates in Phalaris arundinacea.
Effects: If smoked it acts hallucinogenic like DMT/5-MeO-DMT; extremely rapid onset and short duration of effects (10 minutes). Subjectively, the effect can last longer. Depersonalisation, powerful hallucinations, encounters with “entities from other dimensions”. Together with Harmala-seeds or an extract prepared from them, it acts as an ayahuasca-analogue (see there). The kind and intensity of the experience vary strongly with the species and the proportion of the contained alkaloids.
Side effects: The same side effects and risks as in all hallucinogenics. (Read the section “Use of hallucinogenics“). Nausea and vomiting, that can be very intense, are often occurring side effects, especially of the DMT Harmine- combination. A diet during the intake is necessary, or else it can come to very unpleasant up to lethal incidents. Caution: Phalaris arundinacea kills pasturing sheep that react very sensitive to 5-MeO-DMT. Extreme caution is advised, especially during the use of a unknown strain. The side effects of the frequent intake of 5-MeO-DMT are unknown.
Suppliers: Dried herb und seeds in ethnobotanical stores, life plants in garden centers.
See also: Jim DeKorne, Psychedelic Neo-Schamanism, Section „Smokable DMT from Plants“ as well as various issues of the magazine Entheogen Review.
Miscellaneous: There is little sense in buying some Phalaris-arundinacea-strains and planting them. Because of its toxic effects on cattle, the alkaloid content of this grass species was lowered by breeding. Most species that are available in the seeds trade are therefore not psychoactive. Even seeds of known breeds often produce plants of different degrees of activity. That is the reason why American drug researchers decided to exchange active strains as offshoots. It is to be expected that in a few years more reliable information in terms of composition and concentration will be released. Stress (for example through frequent mowing) seems to increase the alkaloid content of the plants. Apparently the alkaloids are a countermeasure of the plant against too much grazing. DMT as substance is included in all narcotic drugs laws, the situation regarding DMT containing plants and material differs from one country to another. Therefore it is advised against the intake of DMT-containing material.