Wild Lettuce (Lactuca virosa)
This is another one of those plants that is steeped in mystery and misinformation. Historically, the Hopi smoked the dried resin that they obtained when the flower was cut off of this plant. This resin would then be air-dried and later smoked in ritual. Similar effects could be obtained from smoking dried Wild Lettuce leaves, but never as potent as the resin extracted daily from the flowers. Furthermore, the Hopi believe that induced dream states contain more information about reality than the conscious waking state. Wild lettuce was not only used in ritual to help achieve visionary and trace states, it was used to enhance the vividness of dreams when smoked prior to sleep.
Since the Native American Indians were so conscious of their relationship with plants and the spirits that they believe are contained within them, they would only collect a little bit each day, ensuring that the Wild Lettuce plant could regenerate, providing an endless stream of "Lettuce O" as they called it. This is why Wild Lettuce is one of the main ingredients in our Dreamer's Blend
; an immensely popular herbal blend we offer exclusively at our shop. It's one of our most popular blends, and one that several other venders have attempted to imitate!
A typical Wild Lettuce recipe is simply this: Lactucarine, the active alkaloid in the plant, extracts well enough into water. So, natives would gently simmer 1 ounce of Wild Lettuce dried leaf per person over a period of 8 hours, stirring often. As the water evaporated, a gummy residue wuld be left behind. This resin would be carefully removed from the cooking vessel, and then sealed in a container to prevent it from drying out. One ounce of material tpyically produces about 1/2 of a gram of resin, and the 1/2 gram of resin was smoked in one sitting during rituals. Please note that smoking is dangerous to one's health, even when it's a natural herbal product.
There are a lot of venders who claim that they have "true" Wild Lettuce, but only the Lactuca virosa strain contains a reasonable concentration of the typically sought-after alkaloids. There are multiple strains of this sacred botanical, just as there are of so many other psychoactive plants such as Kratom and Calamus, but often times, as with those plants as well, only one of the strains have a place in Shamanic and Spiritual tradition.
Wild Lettuce Products...