Salvia divinorum, Sage-of-the-seers

Savlvia divinorum, Sage-of-the-seers, a rare and highly localized tropical mint family member found in deep, rich soils in isolated mountain ravines in Oaxaca, Mexico. It escaped discovery by Western scientists until flowering specimens were collected in 1962. The plant is a cultigen, probably propagated vegetatively for centuries. The plant rarely flowers, and only about 3% set seed. Propagated by cuttings, most of the genetic material in horticulture is from the Wasson-Hofmann clone from their 1962 collections. The active constituents, salvinorins, were isolated in 1982. A divination sacrament used by curanderos and curanderas of the Mazatec. The Mazatecs use Salvia divinorum, the sage of the seers, as a diviniation tool when more potent mushrooms are unavailable. This sacred indigenous medicine has an unfortunate contemporary resurrgence as a recreational agent.

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