CAP: 1.5-8 (10) cm broad, broadly conical or oval
or bell-shaped (often with an umbo ) when young, gradually expanding to
convex, broadly umbonate, or plane; surface smooth or with small
whitish veil remnants when young, viscid when moist, soon dry, color
variable: whitish with a brown to yellowish center, or entirely yellow
to yellowish-buff to yellow-brown, or sometimes cinnamon-brown when
young and sometimes dingy olive in old age; bruising and aging bluish;
margin sometimes hung with veil remnants. Flesh firm, white, staining
blue or blue-green when bruised.
GILLS: Close, adnate to
adnexed or seceding to free; pallid, soon becoming gray, then deep
purple-gray to nearly black; edges whitish.
STALK: 4-15 cm long, 0.4-1-5
cm thick, equal or more often thicker below, dry, white or sometimes
yellowish to yellow-brown, aging or bruising blue or blue-green;
VEIL: Membranous, white or
bluish-stained, usually forming a thin, fragile, superior ring on stalk
which is blackened by falling spores.
SPORE PRINT: Dark
purple-brown to blackish; spores 11-17x7-12 microns, elliptical,
smooth, thick-walled, with a large apical germ pore. Cystidia present
on faces of gills, but chrysocystidia absent.
HABITAT: Solitary or in
groups on dung and manure, especially in cattle pastures; widely
distributed in the tropics and subtropics-Colombian, Central America,
Mexico, etc-and in the Gulf Coast region of the United States.
: Hallucinogenic. Is not as powerful on a dry weight basis as Psilocybe cyanescens, but is larger.
Psilocybe cubensis is a species of psychedelic mushroom whose primary,
pharmacologically active constituents are psilocybin and psilocin. They
belong to the Strophariaceae family, are reddish-cinnamon brown to golden brown in color ,
and bruise bluish/greenish when crushed or dried. Their caps are planar
when fully mature, and their gills are andate (horizontally attached to
the stem) to andex (slightly indented at the attachment point)
depending on the subspecies. The gills are closely spaced and drop
dark-brown to blackish spores.
Psilocybe cubensis are coprophilic, and colonize the dung of large
herbivores, most notably cows and other grazing mammals. They prefer
humid grasslands and have been found in tropical and subtropical
environments in the Americas and Asia. In the US, they are sometimes
found growing wild in the south, generally below the 35th parallel.
They have been found in the highlands and river valleys of Colombia,
Ecuador and Peru in South America.
Psilocybe cubensis is used in spiritual and or healing rituals in
Mesoamerica, notably by the Chol and the Lacandon Maya people in
This species was identified as Stropharia cubensis by F.S. Earle in
Cuba in 1904 (hence the specific name). It was later identified
independently as Naematoloma caerulescens in Tonkin in 1907 by N.
Patouillard and as Stropharia cyanescens by W.A. Murrill in 1941 in
Florida novelty. These synonyms were later assigned to the species P.
cubensis. It was later found throughout U.S. Gulf Coast, Mexico,
Central America, South America, West Indies, Thailand, Cambodia, India,
Its psychoactive compounds are:
* Psilocybin (4-Phosphoryloxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine)
* Psilocin (4-hydroxy-N,N-dimethyltryptamine)
* Baeocystin (4-Phosphoryloxy-N-methyltryptamine)
* Norbaeocystin (4-Phosphoryloxytryptamine)
Psilocin and psilocybin are substances isolated by Albert Hofmann in
1958 in a related species, P. mexicana. All four compounds are presumed
hallucinogenic, though it is suspected that baeocystin and
norbaeocystin are less psychoactive than psilocybin and psilocin.
Psychedelic mushrooms have rich and varied spiritual significance --
they have been used in religious ceremonies for centuries. The Aztecs
reserved them for their holiest ceremonies and called them Teonancatl
("divine flesh"). Lacand