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Voacanga africana is a small tree native to tropical Africa belonging to the Apocynaceae family. It grows to a height of 6 m and bears leaves up to 30 cm long. The yellow or white flowers are followed by paired, follicular, dehiscent fruits with a mottled green exocarp and a fleshy yellow mesocarp surrounding the seeds. The plant contains alkaloids acting as CNS depressants and hypotensive agents.
Voacanga contains a large number of alkaloids related to the anti-addiction drug ibogaine (see also the Iboga category for more), including some of the only known naturally occurring CB1 receptor antagonists. One of the plant alkaloids, voacangine, was used as a precursor in the semisynthesis of ibogaine. Extracts from the plant are also used in the production of vinpocetine, a drug used to treat Alzheimer’s disease, and vinblastine, used to treat leukemia.
In the African rainforest, trees of the genus Voacanga are highly respected by the indigenous population. The species Voacanga africana, a tree with large leaves, yellow or white flowers and berries with yellow to brown seeds, growing to about 6 m in height, is one of the most revered together with Iboga. The tree is poisonous, but its bark and seeds are used for magical and religious purposes. A drink prepared from the bark of the Voacanga tree has stimulating effects and is used by the natives before hunting to increase their physical and mental endurance. Seeds used for ritual purposes are especially revered.
Ibogaine-related alkaloids are responsible for the hallucinogenic effects of Voacanga trees, but the preparation and use of Voacanga drinks remains a well-kept secret among African shamans.
5 – 50 grams
5 grams is about 80-100 seeds
Seeds for home cultivation and extractions (other use at your own risk)
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5 grams, 10 grams, 50 grams
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