Phenethylamine Cacti

Here is a fully legal large trippy world to explore for the intrepid juggernaut.

While peyote and even San Pedro’s cacti are both fairly well known for their mescaline content – it surprises most people to learn that more than 150 other species of cacti also contain mescaline or some similar shamanic henethylamine alkaloids. Phenethylamine alkaloids (PEAs) are similar in structure to the neurotransmitter dopamine, and this similarity explains the psychoactive nature. Research into these PEA cacti is still in its early stages, and yet a steady stream of new cacti and new PEA compounds are being discovered and better understood. The research into these cacti and their compounds is the current focus of the premier psychedelic chemist and juggernaut Sasha Shulgin, who is in the midst of classifying all the psychoactive compounds naturally occurring in cacti.

While this article shall focus on two commonly found species, Mammilaria senilis and Pachecereus pringlei a more complete list of interesting mescaline and PEA cacti is found below. Every year at least another couple of species of cacti are added to the list, and our discovery of new naturally occurring psychedelics continues to grow at an astounding rate. Some of these compounds have also now been synthesized and sold in the open market as “research chemicals.” And one can expect to see new interesting psychoactive compounds being discovered from this ongoing cacti research.

The majority of these cacti are native to the Americas, and can live comfortably in the temperature zones of North America’s backyards. As noted, research into many of these cacti is still new, and thus this discussion should only serve as a guide for more investigation. Furthermore, many cacti can look a lot alike and great care must be taken to correctly identify the species before consuming.

The Tamahumara Indians of Northern Mexico consider several species of Mammilaria (M. craigii, M. microcarpia, M. grahamii as well as M. senilis) to be important “false peyotes” which they call wichuriki or just hikuri Like peyote the cacti are valued as a visual hallucinogen used for divination or spiritual health. The plant is split open at the top which is the strongest part and most generally used. A cup or two can be eaten raw or cooked. The Tamahumara believe that these false peyotes allow one to travel great distances in one’s sleep. The plant contains several interesting psychoactive phenethylamines including N-methyl-3,4-dimethoxyphenethylamine, a compound also structurally similar to MDMA or “ecstasy.”

Another very interesting cacti, native to central northern Mexico, Baja and southwestern United States, although now more widely cultivated is Pachecereus pringlei. P. pringlei is
a fairly attractive dark green cactus with a round shape and 11 ribs, lined with spike clusters consisting of 18 pins plus one huge pin in the center. It can get incredibly tall,
reaching over 40 feet tall. While no known Indigneous group uses it as a sacrament, the Seri of northern Mexico do use the plant in religious ceremonies and use its juice as an
antiseptic. Furthermore, this cactus has been depicted in sacred cave paintings found throughout the northern regions of Mexico. Because the paintings came to the attention of
Sasha Sulgin, he was the first to document P. pringlei’s consumption and verify its psychoactivity when he published his account of the cacti’s effect on a dozen of his fellow juggernauts in only 2002.

The care and feeding of these cacti is relatively easy and many can be located at specialty cacti shops such as the local Fred Meyers?

Ariocarpus

- species -

A. agavoides; A. fissuratus, A. kotschoubeyanusz, A. lloydii, A. retusus, A. scapharostrus, A. trigonus


Cereus

- species -

cereus alacriprotanus, c. forbesii, c. glaucus, c. jamacaru, c. peruvianus, c. peruvianus monstruosus, c. valadus


Cereus

- species -

cereus alacriprotanus, c. forbesii, c. glaucus, c. jamacaru, c. peruvianus, c. peruvianus monstruosus, c. valadus


Cereus

- species -

cereus alacriprotanus, c. forbesii, c. glaucus, c. jamacaru, c. peruvianus, c. peruvianus monstruosus, c. valadus


Cereus

- species -

cereus alacriprotanus, c. forbesii, c. glaucus, c. jamacaru, c. peruvianus, c. peruvianus monstruosus, c. valadus


Coryphantha

- species -

coryphantha bumamma, c. calipensis, c. compacta, c. cornifera, c. cornifera var. echinus,
c. durangenis, c. elephantidens, c. greenwoodii, c. macromeris, c. missouriensis, c. ottonis, c. pectinata, c. poselgeriana, c. radians, c. ramillosa, c. runyonii, c. vivipara
denmoza rhodacantha


Echinocereus

- species -

echinocereus blankii, e. cinerascens, e. merkerii, echinocereus triglochidiatus


Lobvia

- species -

lobivia allegriana, l. aurea, l. backebergii, l. bingamiana, l. formosa, l. huashua, l.
pentland,


Mammillaria

- species -

mammillaria heyderii, mammillaria microcarpia, mammilaria senilis


Opuntia

- species -

opuntia acanthocarpa, o. aurantiaca, o. basilaris, o. clavata, o. cylindrica, o. echinocarpa, opuntia exaltata, o. ficus-indica, o. hickenii, o. imbricata, o. invicta, o. kleiniae, o. maldonadensis, o. ramosissima, o. schottii, o. spinosior, o. stanlyi var. kunzei, o. stanlyi var. stanlyi, o. subulata, o. versicolor, o. vulgaris, o. whipplei, pachecereus marginaatus, p. pecten-aboriginum, pachecereus pringlei, pachecereus
tehuantepecanus, pachecereus weberi,


Pereskia

- species -

pereskia aculeata, p. autumnalis, pereskia corrugata, p. cubensis, p. godseffiana, p. grandifolia p. pititache, p. tampicana, p. chapistle,


Trichocereus

- species -

trichocereus andalgalensis, t. bridgesii, t. camarguensis, t. candicans, t. courantii, t.
cuzcoensis, t. fulvilanus, t. knuthianus, t. lamprochlorus, t. macrogonus, t. manguinii, 142
t. pachanoi, t. pasacana, t. peruvianus, t. purpureopilosus, t. santiaguensis, t.
schickendantzii, t. skottbergii, t. strigosus, t. taquimbalensis, t. terscheckii, t.
thelegonoides, t. thelegonus, t. validus, t. tunariensis, t. wedermannianus,