What Is Calea Zacatechichi?

Calea Zacatechichi

Miguel Antonio Ordoñez
Miguel Antonio Ordoñez
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Traditionally used by Mexican shamans, Calea Zacatechichi has been used by dream walkers for thousands of years to gain insight and guidance from the spirits

Calea Zacatechichi is a Mexican herb that is largely associated with vivid and lucid dreaming.

Traditionally used by Mexican shamans, Calea Zacatechichi has been used by dream walkers for thousands of years to gain insight and guidance from the spirits. It allowed the shaman to acquire information from their subconscious, in order to be the guiding hand of their people in the waking world. This is how this herb has become known as the “Dream Herb” in today's society, and is one of the best supplements available to those looking to have a lucid dream.

Botanical Info

Part of the Asteraceae family, Calea Zacatechichi is related to sunflowers and daises. This family has over 23,000 species within it, divided up into 12 subfamilies - with Calea Zacatechichi falling into the subfamily known as Heliantheae. The majority of plants in this family have distinct flowers, with a central capitula surrounded by a ring of petals, (such as seen on a sunflower).

Calea Zacatechichi is one of the examples that breaks this trend, it is a medium sized shrub that sports a much more trumpet like, yellow flower. It is found growing in the wilds of Mexico and Central America. Calea Zacatechichi can grow up to 1.5m in height and can be propagated from seed and cutting, although the seeds are known to be notoriously hard to propagate. It tends to be the leaves of the plant that are most commonly used to induce the dreamer's effect, although the stem and the rest of the foliage can also be used.

Calea Zacatechichi

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What Is A Lucid Dream?

What is a lucid dream?

It is all very well us telling you that Calea Zacatechichi can be useful for lucid dreaming, but this is no good if you do not know what one is in the first place! Basically, a lucid dream is a dream in which you are aware you are dreaming for the duration of the dream. This gives you full control over how the dream plays out, making the night your playground! It can result in some extremely memorable and fun dreams, allowing you to control the path it follows, whilst unlocking the hidden creative potential of your subconscious.

If you are thinking that Calea Zacatechichi may not be for you because you have never lucid dreamed, then you may want to know that just because you have never had a lucid dream before, doesn’t mean you can't have one. It is about training yourself to do it, and Calea Zacatechichi can act as a great aid and support.

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What Are The Effects Of Calea Zacatechichi?

What are the effects of Calea Zacatechichi?

When taken, Calea Zacatechichi will open the mind of your sleeping state. It has very little noticeable impact on the waking mind, with a small potential to make colors look more vivid and sounds more distinct. It is when in your deepest depths of slumber that Calea Zacatechichi has the most effect. Some people have reported being taken to bizarre alien worlds or futuristic worlds. Calea Zacatechichi unlocks the hidden creativity of your subconscious, making you much more likely to have a lucid dream.

It is worth noting that Calea Zacatechichi does not directly induce lucid dreaming. It is a dreaming stimulant, making your dreams much more interesting, memorable and vivid. It acts as a great aid to lucid dreaming, making it a lot easier to slip into one. Calea Zacatechichi also allows you to participate prolonged stretches of dreams; these may only actually be 30-60 minutes in real time, but feel like hours, maybe even days in dream world. Even people who can lucid dream without this aid appreciate Calea Zacatechichi for its ability to really enhance the experience.

Calea Zacatechichi: Chemistry

There is very little research into the chemical composition of Calea Zacatechichi. The research that has been done shows that it contains large amounts of both flavones1 and sesquiterpene lactones2. Whilst a psychoactive compound of unknown structure is confirmed to be present; it is caleicine and caleochromene, sesquiterpene compounds, that are presumed to be the sleep altering compounds in question. It is unfortunate, but not much is understood about the dream inducing herb.

Growing Calea Zacatechichi

Growing Calea Zacatechichi

Calea Zacatechichi is one of the easiest plants to grow that we can think of. However, it can be very hard to get seeds to germinate in the first place. As a result, it can be quite difficult to obtain seeds on the market - no one is really willing to sell them as they fail so often. The best bet is to obtain a cutting.

It is possibly to root a cutting of Calea Zacatechichi in any normal rooting medium. Root hormones are not required either, although they will boost the speed at which your Calea Zacatechichi takes root, as well as improving the quality of the roots themselves. We generally advise the use of gel rooting hormones, as these will seal up the cut completely, reducing chance of disease, exposure, or any other problems a cutting can face. It is a good idea to create a humidity tent to place it in for this phase of its life, helping to prevent the plant from drying out.

Once your cutting has established a decent root base, you can transplant it into soil. Calea Zacatechichi will grow in pretty much every type of shop bought soil out there with very little complaint. To transplant, put a few inches of soil into your container, hold the Calea Zacatechichi in the pot at the level you want it, and very carefully add in more soil – making sure you do not damage any of the roots. If you used soil as a rooting medium, you can transplant the whole lot into a bigger pot, without having to worry about root exposure.

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Put you Calea Zacatechichi back into its humidity tent for a few days to allow it to get over the transplant. Once you take the Calea Zacatechichi out of the tent, it is a good idea to keep an eye on it for a few hours. Watch out for signs of wilting, and if necessary, move the plant back into the humidity tent for a little while longer.

Calea Zacatechichi does not require large amounts of light, so it can thrive quite happily on a window sill or on your patio outside. Calea Zacatechichi can sunburn though, so if leaves start to turn red, it is a sign that your plant is under stress.

That is it! Just continue to water and feed it like you would any other plant. It is extremely easy to look after and quite resilient – the only hard part is getting a cutting to root and transplanting it!

Miguel Antonio Ordoñez
Miguel Antonio Ordoñez
With an AB Mass Media and Communications degree, Miguel Ordoñez is a veteran writer of 13 years and counting and has been covering cannabis-related content since 2017. Continuous, meticulous research along with personal experience has helped him build a deep well of knowledge on the subject.