Datura is a plant with psychoactive effects, which qualifies as a deliriant. Datura plants have been known to be poisonous. Despite that, it has been used throughout recorded history in the Americas, Europe, and India, for various ritual purposes and as medicine.
There are some 9 species of Datura. The plant is also known as jimsonweed, moonflowers, thorn-apple, hell’s bells, and devil’s trumpets.
The active substance is mainly contained in the flowers and seeds of the plant. The potency of the anticholinergic substances (tropane alkaloids) of the plant depends on the strain, as well as on the age of the plant and the spot where it grows.
This makes dosage a tricky affair.
Besides the aforementioned 9 strains of Datura, tropane alkaloids can be sourced from the plants Atropa Belladona and Brugmansia as well.
Given the fact that potency can differ significantly from one plant to another, even within the same strain, it is difficult to put a precise time-stamp on when the effects of Datura kick in.
The onset of these effects can come as early as 20 minutes and as late as 2 hours. Effects take about 5-12 hours to culminate. After a further 2-3 hours, most effects wear off, although side effects can linger on for 6 to 24 hours.
Eating Datura seems to yield the most impactful effects. Anecdotal reports say that a person who once ate a whole Datura tree flower, tripped for 72 hours afterwards. Ingesting the tea brewed from flowers/seeds results in similar levels of psychoactive alteration. Brewing a few dozen seeds into a several cups of tea supposedly results in decent “trips” though. Moderation is definitely key here.
Smoking seems to be the safest way to take Datura, as it delivers less of the active substance to the brain. Smoking a whole dried flower has been reported to yield major results, with headaches as a side effect. Smoking just a small part of a flower has apparently generated satisfactory results.
What are Datura‘s effects?
Given the nature of the plant, there isn’t really any science underpinning its anecdotal effects observed by users.
That said, there is quite a bit of subjective knowledge out there in this regard.
The tropane alkalioids in Datura provoke a series of rather unpleasant side effects that accompany overall stimulation.
Such effects include constipation, abnormal heart rate, dehydration, dizziness, high blood pressure, increased perspiration, muscle cramps, spasms, nausea, overwhelming physical fatigue, tactile hallucination, and the dilation of the pupils.
As if the above weren’t enough, the compound also induces painful jolts through the body, which occur with hiccup-like frequency.
Users have reported feeling that their bodies become extremely heavy. Performing any movement under such circumstances is very uncomfortable.
Urination is affected by Datura as well. On one hand, it induces the urge to urinate frequently. On the other, the actual act of urination becomes extremely difficult and unpleasant.
Hallucination is one of the most prominent effects of Datura, even in very small doses. It encompasses every sense: it affects touch, taste, smell, and vision. Users have reported very confusing and intense experiences in this regard.
Datura‘s effects on the reproductive system are just as contradictory. On one hand, it increases libido. On the other, it causes erectile dysfunction.
Given its hallucinogenic effects, it is hardly a surprise that Datura also affects dreams. It may cause more vivid dream images, but it is doubtful that it helps with dream recall. After all, it does decelerate thoughts and it disorganizes the thought process.
It also suppresses language, focus, and memory.
Cognitive fatigue is another one of its effects, as is cognitive dysphoria and amnesia.
Anxiety, photophobia, and the suppression of visual acuity are all after-effects of Datura.
Adding feelings of impending doom to the above picture does not do much to further tarnish Datura‘s already sketchy reputation.
My Own Experience with Datura Innoxia
I have been smoking Datura innoxia leaves and flowers without any noticeable effects, except for light sedation maybe. I also experimented with eating/smoking an occasional seed of Datura. Nothing spectacular happened until…
The day I decided to smoke around 3-4 Datura seeds (one of them I crushed before adding it to the mixture) together with some Cannabis and kanna. Went to bed immediately after I finished smoking the mixture and started to relax in preparation of my astral projection routine. I suddenly became anxious that I would stop breathing or my heart would stop. I got up from bed and felt very cold. My heart was beating way too fast (tachycardia). My blood pressure was at the roof as well. Felt waves of nausea from the stomach along with panic, breathlessness, and an awful feeling of dread, followed by a sense of euphoria, joy, and happiness of being alive. I felt as if I am dying. I was sedated, but stimulated at the same time. I was almost delirious, but not quite. The state was dream-like, and I was very apathetic and found it difficult to talk. After about 2 hours, my blood pressure returned to normal, and I felt a bit better. Went to bed as I was very sleepy, and calmer then before. It was still a bit difficult to dream and the nausea and feeling of sickness still accompanied me the next day. Nothing interesting happened dream- and sleep-wise during the night.
Bottom line. It was a very powerful experience. And one which I will not be in a hurry to replicate.
Natural Plant Sources of Tropane Alkaloids
- Atropa belladonna
- Brugmansia arborea
- Brugmansia aurea
- Brugmansia candida
- Brugmansia sanguinea
- Brugmansia suaveolens
- Brugmansia versicolor
- Datura discolor
- Datura inoxia
- Datura insignis
- Datura metel
- Datura stramonium
- Datura wrightii
Datura as a Dream Herb
According to anecdotal evidence, Datura stramonium may be used for dream enhancement and lucid dream induction. They may also potentiate the effects of psychedelics, such as magic mushrooms, cannabis, and DMT.
For this purpose, the safe dose is a microdose of about 1-3 seeds (each seed weighs about 5-10 mg so a maximum of 30 mg seeds; others claim that up to 100 mg is a safe dose). The seeds are chewed and swallowed about 1 hour before bed.
This is said to generate short-lasting stimulant effects at first, and then a mild euphoria. Datura stramonium (but not D. innoxia) may also alleviate nausea.
According to this report, “dreams start almost immediately before he even fall asleep.” Sleep latency is shortened from around 30 minutes to 5 minutes. They following day people report feeling very well rested.
Regarding the differene between D. stramonium and D. innoxia, some say the former is a stimulant (high in hyoscyamine) while the latter is a sedative (high in scopolamine) and as such may serve as an effective sleep aid.