Hallucinogenic Spinach Is Here

In the latest outbreak of what-the-fuqery, potentially poisonous – and hallucinogenic – spinach has prompted a nationwide food recall in Australia. The alerts don’t specify the nature of the contaminant, other than that it is ‘plant-based.’

The most likely suspect seems to be the notorious psychedelic Datura aka Jimsonweed which is a spinach look-alike when it’s not flowering. The authorities probably aren’t mentioning that in case swarms of avid psychonauts swarm the supermarkets seeeking what they think will be a shamanic high.

This occurred with Mercury in the retrograde shadowzone and aligned with Uranus + the North Node in Taurus. In classical astrology, Taurus is totally food, agriculture, supply chains and so on. At the same time, btw, there is an alert + recall for poppy seeds because of an overly high level of thebain, which is apparently similar to codeine.

(Scroll down for more on the astrology around this incident.)

There have been many previous cases of accidental datura consumption from people thinking it was spinach but they’re usually growing their own or wild-foraging and unaware that the plant had infiltrated what they thought was a patch of spinach.

I gather that even hardcore psychonauts have a healthy respect for datura – it is one of the classic sacred plants and it’s also one of the most lethal.

This archeology site notes that “it was used by shamans to transcend the borders of life and death and communicate with spirits. Among the Mohave, Yuma, Cahuilla, Zuni, and other cultural groups, Datura is used more generally to create and break hexes, to protect from evil, and even as a sleep and dream aid.”

Third Wave, a pro-psychedelics info site, says that users frequently report encountering dead friends and family. It would be absolutely terrifying to ingest some thinking you were having a spinach smoothie or some funky greens with your omelette and bam: hallucinations et al.

It also causes a host of side effects ranging from unpleasant to life-threatening and people are being hospitalized over this even as more products are recalled – baked goods containing spinach and so on. There must have been a s**t-load of spinach involved.

But the datura story is so strange – it’s sacred, it’s dangerous, it’s the witches weed said to be the main ingredient of the flying ointment used by witches for their brooms and, well Carlos Castaneda was an advocate.

Yet it was also sold for years as an apparently successful cigarette for ashmatics. Marcel Proust swore by them. They were launched in 1879 – Neptune and Pluto were in Taurus FYI – and while eventually replaced by the asthma inhaler, sold until the Eighties!

So did the millions of people consuming these also experience frequent hallucinations? Were they all tripping? And if it was good enough for doctors to recommend for nearly a century, what changed?

To me this is a story about industrial agriculture and drug culture.

Mercury spends much of January repeating this alignment and then, from mid-May, Jupiter is in Taurus which will amplify Uranus. And, at the end of Pluto in Capricorn, we’re already in a wind-down from globalism as we have known it.

It all fits astrologically and if you’re thinking ‘poisoning, hallucinogenics etc’ sound Neptunian – yes! So the announcement came with the Sun square Neptune and the actual harvesting of the not-quite-spinach would have been with Mars square Neptune.

So this story will evolve in interesting ways and have other ramifications for sure. Thoughts?

66 thoughts on “Hallucinogenic Spinach Is Here”

  1. I just hope this brings more positive (research-based) attention to psychedelics, and how we’ve no choice but to Respect Nature! (sorry for platitudes).
    Just today there was another article in the ABC (Oz) about micro-dosing psychedelics. Micro-dosing is almost old news now, but despite that there is still a paucity of research on the constellation of benefits it could provide (safely, in clinically-controlled conditions), mainly with regards all mental health ailments, which is a crying shame. Pioneers like 83 year old James Fadiman (Gemini), 91 year old Stanislav Grof (Cancerian), and even 75 year old Aquarian and English countess, Amanda Fielding (there is a great article about her from 2018 on Wired, entitled “Inside the Mind of Amanda Fielding, Countess of Psychedelics”), and latterly Michael Pollan and Professor Chris Bache (not so latterly for C Bache) and others having been writing and researching on this stuff for years.
    Expanding consciousness can happen with disciplined meditation, or (even) caffeine/alcohol, or controlled substances – but without research you don’t get the vital safety net. Personally I go for the “nude/natural approach” (substance-free, bar coffee and occasional wine) with art/music/daily meditation and imagination (because I am full of anxiety, and pretty much bio-chemically sensitive to everything) – but if there was a quicker way for a psychologist or other med professional to help somebody in crisis (such as PTSD, grief or addiction, among other e.g.’s), it feels cruel to not examine that? Or provide safe and secular avenues for expansion of consciousness?? Idk. Stay safe all. Xx

  2. Yessss…from the moment I heard about the spinach debacle I had hoped our dear Mystic would write a post about it, and here we have it! It’s a miracle I’m not tripping right now as I was munching on spinach leaves throughout my recent bout of Covid literally morning, noon and night! Just narrowly avoided the contaminated ones, it seems. Or was it a case of not being chosen by the Datura?! I’m also really curious as to how they really could have messed up their leaves at such a commercial farm. Wonder what else will be revealed soon?

    1. The Guardian (Oz ed) confirmed yesterday that it was in fact, datura stramonium (a.k.a. “thornapple” or “jimsonweed”). Yikes ! Hope everybody is okay!
      (also even more kudos to the truly super-paranormal MM! Hope you are having a galaxy-hopping holiday MM.xx)

  3. This agribiz and drug cultures story, man, us Second Wave GenX Hippies’ dreams are coming true! The collapse of agribiz means the renaissance of plant-based healing. They may be too late, but they’re trying to coming to save us! LOL .

    Tangentially, the Xmas before the Plague I was with a good buddy and his husband’s somewhat older counterculture friends and we were bemoaning the disappearance of ACTUAL ecstasy (whilst drinking our Malbecs and chopping out lines — these people were like, think late-80s London Rave scene / fighting with the city over a huge squat they’d managed to score and keep for years and tech jobs they can’t tell you shit about cause “secrets” — I mention this because if there were ecstasy around, *these* people would know where to get it) ), which I thought was simply an American phenom. MDMA alone is NOT ecstacy, and we collectively whinged that we couldn’t understand why no one makes it anymore, the experience being so far superior to just “Molly.” However, this led to me to sitting at the table obsessed with my phone, trying to figure out what the actual biological basis was for MDMA. Valium comes from Valerian, etc. Guess what? MDMA comes from sarsaparilla. Isn’t that wild! I’ve never had jimson weed but there’s lots of old blues tunes about the damage it can do. This adds to my list: jimson weed, peyote, and quaaludes. I smoked banana peel, catnip, lilacs (how could something that smells so good not give you a good high? it didn’t) and morning glory seeds, all to varying success. (BTW: In contrast with my distaste for MDMA, a prof I work with has done several published studies on the therapeutic use in individuals and for couples counseling). I’ve even been told by more than one person that they believe rave culture and ecstasy is partly responsible for the success of the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland, as “you can’t sit in the bathroom of a club all night pawing some fucker saying you love him and then stop when you realize he’s “one of them.” Okay that was a babble. Hope at least it provided some laughs / info.

      1. Very enjoyable read! Shame we’re not in the same country! I’d ask you out on a a date! (in the most plantonic sense – no sleaze intended)

        1. No sleaze taken and thanks! I’m on a major writing jag, finishing up a project, so a bit overexcited with the words for the next day or so. Also, I figured this was probably an appropriate blog (hallucinogenic spinach, ffs) to wish everybody Happy Keith Richards’ Birthday (a high holiday for me, no pun intended). Speaking of “sleaze,” does anyone remember the “Sleaz Sisters” from the movie “Times Square”? Supposedly Keith was given jimson weed on the Stones first tour of the states, in some juke joint in the south, in 63? 64? The legend has it he wasn’t affected.(surprise)

    1. Bloody fascinating! It does feel a bit like the plants are asking us to sit up and take notice of them and their potency.

    1. This is literally the first time I’ve heard of datura. I respect plant medicine but don’t dabble in psychedelics much personally, at least not anymore!! Very curious to hear about what permanent effects datura has had on people in your town.

      1. One of them walks around permanently talking to himself…the others have been damaged psychologicaly and cannot work.

        1. It can cause blindness – usually temporary. The problem is that people hear that it’s a psychedelic and just eat it. It isn’t intended to go through the digestive system – that’s when it will damage you. Hence the witches ointment – listen to the witches..! And smoking is the other traditional use. I recall reading something once about the roots being used…. As always, there are ways to prepare, to imbibe, that are lost to most, and we suffer as a consequence – either through ill-informed misadventures or though not participating at all.

          I’ve always loved the plant – it’s so elegant & enchanting, it feels magical. The thornapple flowers smell absolutely divine, wafting through the summer evenings. I don’t even need to ‘take’ it to feel intoxicated by it.

  4. Ha so the reason for the re-call is inside information. Had crossed spinach off shopping list but will uncross it…nah.
    Back in the day some people got quite sick from Datura, bit like the mythical banana skin high with some raiding the plants in the Melba Botanic Gardens where there were magnificent trees of ‘Angel Trumpet’.
    ‘What part of Popeye never got rusty’?
    (Clue: nothing to do with spinach).
    ‘The part he kept in Olive Oil’

    1. We got *kinda* high on the banana peel (this was at the height of the 60s revivalism in the 80s, we were so into trying to just pretend we were living in 1967). I did morning glory seeds on Feb 28, 1988 in honor of Brian Jones’s birthday and started to trip but didn’t make it through first period before throwing up and the nuns sent me home. We had to soak the seeds in water and rinse a bunch of times cause they found out people were using them to trip and put poison on them, we heard from older hippie parents. I read about using them in the Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, which I found in my parents bookshelf. They’re straight as hell (though my dad drinks his fair share of cheap-ass beer), so I don’t know why they had this book, but everything that’s happened since then is, therefore, all their fault. (j/k)

  5. Great article & heads-up, MM! Astrology amazes me. Guess the baby spinach (and interloper) might have been seeded around the 1st Mars-Neptune square late Oct, then harvested/packed around the 19 Nov rx square? (Recalled packs have 16 thru 28 Dec exp dates). Hopefully it safely resolves around the 3rd final square in March ’23. It is fascinating (mostly scary) that the spinach plant, being super rich in the Martian element of iron, is involved in a hallucinogenic contamination scare (Neptune). Be careful everyone

  6. This is a really fascinating story I agree but just had to say what a fab gift the Year Ahead Transits is. I have bought a heap of them and I know everyone will love them. I can just see/hear everyone comparing notes over the Chrissy lunch. Thanks Mystic!

    1. They are actually being updated within days – so more info and cleaner design so if you’re giving them as Xmas gifts, you will be able to re-download this week – I’ll announce when – and get the newest version.

      Also I am still hoping to get the Tarot completed by Xmas – pdf download is returning!

        1. Me too and am going to change my name handle so there is no crossover. Garystar, Olive Oyl. Or hallucinogenix.😅

  7. Around here, when spinach gets recalled due to contamination, it’s usually E. Coli. Every time regulations get loosened, livestock runoff and/ or sewage get into the irrigation water. Hallucinogenic weeds is a novelty!

    I guess industrial harvesting, washing, and packaging practices just don’t include looking carefully at what is going in the package, which is why you sometimes get a a bonus pet frog.

  8. This is really interesting to me. As many witches will tell, the plant chooses you, not the other way around. And thornapple chose me at a very young age (she is used by my cousins to pull toxins from the soil on their farmland), and it wasn’t until later that I realized how deeply our affinity ran.

    So for Datura (Inoxia? Stramonium? Not sure which might have ended up in the spinach) to have a bit of a dalliance with the spinach crops seems a result of collective desire for awakening. I can’t think of anyplace she would be more at home than in the land of the Dreaming.

    1. I think you’re right about the plant choosing and although shrooms aren’t exactly a plant the first few times I tried them nothing happened. Attempt number three worked, or at least my friends said so, but I could not remember a thing.

      1. Same, totally agreed! Have had the exact experience, mushrooms lead the charge with that, they’re clearly sentient, intelligent beings that choose.

  9. I couldn’t imagine having a hallucinogenic trip with a plant psychedelic outside of a heavily protected setting is going to end very well for anyone lol.
    When DMT started sweeping through as the new wave spiritual trip, I always questioned exactly what doors are opening and what is attaching to your auric field on the way back/down.

    1. I guess why I say this is that shamanic practices should be respected… In some cultures the practicing shaman isn’t even recognized or called a shaman in their village till decades later, because it’s a title that must be earned.
      Tryna find a high off a bag of spinach doesn’t seem right 😂😂

    2. Well, this was the big dichotomy in the 60s, as you can learn more about in docs like Derek Taylor’s “It Was 20 Years Ago Today” and the above mentioned Acid test book. Tim Leary was all about “set and setting” and Ken Kesey was about embracing the chaos. I’ve done both, but I had to stop — the quality of the acid just started rendering it uningestable, the comedowns unbearable, torturous, due to the added speed and strychnine. But I have had extremely beautiful experiences, using both methods WHEN the acid has been of good quality. of course, it’s individual — but those thinking the more “meditative, close group of friends” method is safer are mistaken. Many times you find that you have a friend who is extremely interested in getting into and fucking with everyone’s minds and that can take QUITE a long time to recover from. So either way, the rule is to find your center, obey it, and stay with it. I would even say the acid itself helps you find and keep your center, when it’s good stuff. And it helps you see through those mind games, like, before they happen. Having said that, I haven’t done DMT just cause I don’t run in those circles anymore and it wasn’t readily available when I did.

      1. Hi there SheRat!!
        Oh don’t get me wrong, I’ve spent many years in a self prescribed psychedelic state, as my best form of escapism from reality and had incredible journeys to the center of the earth lol. So I get it…..I loved my LSD phase and with the right people/s I would take the 8hr magical ride again in the future. I’d never say never 😵‍💫😜 I do now, understand more about accessing other realms and how important it is to be safe & protected.
        Lately I’ve been getting my highs from healing and deepening my connection to this gorgeous universe of ours! DMT has the same properties as ayahuasca, but the synthetic form and i wouldn’t want to attempt that outside of ceremony. That’s just personal preference, for as wild & free that I’ve been I apparently have one boundary lol 😂

        1. This is one of the reasons DMT, now that I’m older and have The Fear, generally around even mild psychedelics (can’t even smoke dream weed without shame spirals and paranoia, which is frustrating as someone with anxiety..I wish it did for me what it does for seemingly everyone else!), is off my list. It would have to be a VERY special situation and like you said! Never say never!!!

          1. Hhhmmm I totally understand this, I have the same issues with smoking trees lol I get extreme sensitivities, where it heightens my neurological processes rather than slows it down. Boo hoo lol 😂
            You sound like you’re someone who is over stimulated and plugged in by default (like me!) which is amazing creatively but completely taxing if you don’t know when or how to unplug 🔌

          2. I’ve gone in the other direction with psychedelics – very trepidatious during my teens & 20s (plagued by heavy Pluto aspects to everything); Lost The Fear in my 30s – i think it was the alignment of Uranus/Neptune/Jupiter on my IC opposite my Moon which completely changed my wiring after a trip to Hades & back (no drugs involved at all). Now that i’m in my 60s i’m ready to go where no mind has gone before. Could be that i’m having Uranus square Uranus/Merc/Mars.

    1. Apparently, if one smoked too many of these cigs, one of the side effects was a heightened libido & the inducement of highly sexual dreams …. no wonder they sold.

      As an aside, the homeopathic remedy stramonium is sometimes given to men with sexual erethism (excessive sexual arousal, or suffering from an unpleasant irritability in their sexual organs)
      But it is mainly used to treat fear, massive anxiety, panic attacks & PTSD.
      It’s also given to treat children’s acute conditions that are accompanied by extreme fear, restlessness & night terrors.

  10. i have Datura aka Jimsonweed volunteers in my garden regularly & to my eyesight, the leaves don’t resemble spinach. I did however, plant a salad garden mix in the ground last spring & then didn’t harvest it because the thought popped into my head that I couldn’t identify all the leaves in the mix as they grew. I drank the brewed dried leaves of jimsonweed one time many years ago with a friend & it was a harsh experience not to be repeated.

      1. Feedback was (in the day) that nothing occurred except vomiting.
        Believe it would need special preparation not just eating the flowers, maybe they read ‘The Lotus Eaters’ and applied it.

      2. I could see various colored illuminated outlines of everything & an echo like effect audibly & an enhanced awareness that was overshadowed by an intensely nervous stomach feeling.

  11. I absolutely love this story. Datura features very lightly in my book, Earthly Bodies. In that it’s administered as sedation/bonding technique to control a group of people. 🌱

  12. I get how people who wild-forage might mistake datura for spinach – but i find it strange how it penetrated the almost clinical, neat rowed, no weeds monoculture conditions of this spinach – and no one noticed the unmistakable datura flowers (flowering from summer to autumn).

    1. Exactly. I was going to add this biodynamic snippet I saw which talks about how alkaloid plants thrive in certain soil conditions but it was a bit garden geeky and I barely understood it. I also looked for other scenarios this has happened but the big spinach scares have been e-coli and the datura contaminants have been individuals.

      I didn’t know they flowered so long! There was a really hideous case in Uganda in 2019 when food-aid donated cereal was contaminated.

      1. So in that incident it was datura stramonium *seeds* which contaminated the cereal. Maybe in this case some seeds somehow got in with the spinach seeds, were then sown & they grew surreptitiously amongst the spinach, with no time to flower?

    1. I just had to look up Elzie Crisler Segar (Popeye the – Neptunian – Sailor creator) after your hilarious one-liner (typical!), Sk. 😂
      Well, if he isn’t a Sagittarian born 8 Dec, 1894 (just “turned” 128..); with both natal Neptune and Pluto in Gemini ?? (Mars just cj-ed his Neptune, which is just square his sun).
      Weii…ii…irrrd ! Xx

      1. Thanks for looking it up Earth! The
        Neptune-Pluto conjunction in Gemini in the 1890s marked so many magical writers and creators among them Nabokov, Cole Porter, Scott Fitzgerald 💫

      2. Noooo i’m a December 8 Sagg!
        Loved the Popeye cartoons in the 50’s.
        Was in a room once with 2 other Dec 8’s & it was electric.
        Remember ‘Popeye’ from the French Connection movie?

      3. LOL, Earthstar, i had in fact made up a chart for Popeye himself (first time he was published) – and 3 guesses as to who is conjunct his Sun & trine Mars.

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