Frequently Asked Questions
0.05g – 0.1g – Microdose.
Unless you have the most sensitive scales in the world, it’s unlikely that you’ll ever be able to weigh out less than 0.05g magic mushrooms. This is a good microdose starting point for those who are just experimenting. Completely sub-perceptual effects with very little chance of tipping over into a tripping state.
At this dose, you might perceive:
- Heightened creativity
- Increased energy, focus, and attention
- Increased mood, restfulness, peacefulness, calm
- Better memory and cognitive performance
- Increased physical and emotional comfort
0.1g – 0.2g – Medium microdose.
Yes. An amount this small makes a difference when it comes to microdosing. Even the tiniest increments can bring on more pronounced effects. This is still considered a microdose event and isn’t likely to cause serious tripping.
At this dose, you might perceive:
- Heightened creativity and mental activity
- Increased focus, attention, and pattern recognition
- Improved mood, heightened perception of the mind and emotions
- Quick mental performance
- Improved physical performance
0.2g – 0.3g – Strong microdose.
This could easily turn into a light tripping experience and so it’s not typically recommended as a microdose. However, it’s low enough to not be full on tripping for most people, and so for seasoned microdosers it could be considered.
At this dose, you might perceive:
-Altered visual and physical perception
- Heightened attention to detail
- Increased mental dexterity and problem solving
- Improved mood, energy, and increased perception of thoughts and emotions
- Abstract thoughts
0.3g – 0.5g – Minidose.
This is a very safe place to start for beginners. At this dose, visual perception becomes noticeably different and the world might start to become “trippy”.
Thoughts can become introspective and existential, or deep abstract concepts can be entertained. At the same time, this is not the kind of journey that leads to ego death or a loss of motor control.
At this dose, you might perceive:
- Mild euphoria or excitement
- Changes in visual perception (lights, vivid colours, movements)
- Changes in the way things sound and feel physically
- Heightened physical senses
- Mundane tasks suddenly become more engaging and exciting
- The arts are highly engaging, especially music and visual art
- A preference for introspection over social activity
- A desire to stretch or flow
- Increased creativity, mental acuity and pattern recognition
0.5g – 1.5g – Museum dose.
As the dose gets stronger, the effects all become more prominent. Dr Alexander Shulgin coined this dose the “museum” dose because although the psilocybin landscape is much more apparent, you can still do public or social activities like go to a museum without attracting too much unwanted attention.
At this dose, you might perceive:
- Increased visual effects (“breathing” in the environment)
- Alterations to sound, time and space perception
- Heightened physical sensations
- Confusion, anxiety, fear
- Desire to converse or talk, or alternatively a preference not to talk
- Abstract thoughts
- Increased sensitivity to light and sound
- Frustration at the “no man’s land” concept of mushroom dosage, where you tinker on the edge of a full blown psychedelic experience
1.5g – 3g – Moderate dose.
Welcome to the psilocybin psychedelic experience. It’s from here that many of the mysteries, discomforts, and epiphanies of the netherworld can take place. In these states, people can have religious experiences, terrifying experiences, or deep healing experiences. Sometimes, it’s all three.
The thing is — it’s very difficult to describe the psychedelic experience. Yes, there’s the breathing buildings and stuff. But it’s important to remember that it’s never that every time. The psychedelic is all together physical, emotional, and mental. Sometimes it manifests as heavily physical, other times completely mental, and at other times it’s emotional without the super vivid visuals.
It is different every single time.
At this dose, you might perceive:
- Altered visual perception
- Loss of fine motor control
- Desire to engage in philosophical, religious, or existential thoughts
- Desire to disengage socially
- Fear or anxiety (bad trip experiences)
- Excitement, joy, euphoria
- Deep emotional healing experiences, memory retrieval
- Repeated yawning
- Desire to move the body or stretch
- Increased appreciation for music, physical touch, the arts
- Difficulty with everyday tasks like tying shoe laces and operating mobile phones
- Nausea, dizziness, sleepiness
3g – 5g – Macrodose.
At this dose, everything that has already been mentioned may occur but with increased potency, intensity and vigour. In addition, you may perceive:
-Intense visuals with eyes closed
- A desire to remain still, lying down, or motionless
- Dissociation from the physical body
- Deep healing, memory retrieval, what feels like self-guided psychotherapy
- Complete loss of the sense of time
- Disorientation, confusion, fear or anxiety in the event of a bad experience
- Loss of motor control (recommended to have friends around)
- Nausea, vomiting, dizziness
5g – 7g – Megadose.
Increase in the intensity of all effects. You may also perceive:
- Complete ego death
- A “catatonic” state whereby there’s no desire to move nor much of a response to the physical world
- A state of existence that feels like dreaming
- Complete removal and disinterest in the physical world
- Inability to control any stream of thought or logic
- Anxiety, paranoia, terror in the event of a bad trip experience
Heroic dosing – 7g+.
If a mushroom user ever gets to this stage, it’s after years of experimentation. Terrence McKenna coined 7g the “heroic dose”. There is no real knowing how far the experience goes or whether there is a limit to what can be achieved on a dose of mushrooms. Terrence McKenna obviously believed the only limit was the dose.
Not all heroic doses end in the sense of heroism. An experience so impactful can be terrifying to the point of trauma which is why it’s not recommended without a lot of experience or even supervision.
At the heroic dose, you might perceive:
- Nothing at all (a sense of nothingness)
- Inability to differentiate between a thought or object or physical sensations, complete dissolution of boundaries
- Loss of identity
- New dimensions, parallel realities, alternate universes, aliens
Eating the stems and caps raw out of the bag, you get all the tastes associated with mushrooms. At higher doses there can be some nausea involved.
There are two methods:
BREWING A TEA
Put your desired dose in 1-1.5 cups of water and boil for 10 minutes. If you wish, you can add other delicious herbs to make it more palatable such as putting the mushrooms in a chai tea blend. Comes on faster than eating raw mushrooms and reportedly less nausea.
Grind your desired dose into a powder and put in a small cup or bowl. Add the juice of 1-2 lemons until the mushrooms are covered in lemon juice. Let them sit for 15-20 minutes. Consume in its entirety. Comes on fastest, strongest, and reportedly significantly less nausea.
There are lots of different mushroom tea recipes online, but I like to keep it simple. I’ve followed the recipe below many times with great results and no loss of potency as far as I can tell. In fact, the majority of my survey respondents also reported a similar method with some minor alterations.
SIMPLE SHROOM TEA RECIPE
1. Weigh out the dose of mushrooms. If you don’t have a scale, please get one! There’s nothing worse than taking fewer shrooms or more shrooms than you meant to, only to find out a couple hours in.
2. Grind mushrooms into a powder. You can use a cannabis grinder or coffee grinder for this.
3. Chop up some ginger and add to mushroom powder
4. Pour hot water over mushrooms and ginger (and optional tea bag)
5. Let sit for 10-15 mins
6. Add honey to taste and enjoy!
Optional if nausea is your main concern: Strain out mushroom bits with a strainer and only consume the tea.
In the end, making your magic mushrooms into a tea can slightly alter the experience and make consumption a little easier on your taste buds and digestive system, but be prepared for it to come on a little faster and possibly stronger than eating raw mushrooms. And remember, for the safest psilocybin mushroom journeys, always take safe use practices into consideration like we outline in our guide to taking shrooms. Enjoy and safe travels!
Mushroom tea is an infusion of mushrooms in water, made by using edible/medicinal mushrooms (such as lingzhi mushroom) or psychedelic mushrooms (such as Psilocybe cubensis). Edible mushrooms always have low levels of calories.
Another downside to chewing and swallowing dried mushrooms is the taste. To many, it’s not the most pleasant experience in the world and it can be hard to get down without gagging. But to side step this, many folks make their shrooms into a tea and add other tea bags to mask the earthy mushroom taste.
While I recommend adding ginger and honey for taste and digestion in Your Psilocybin Mushroom Companion, many of my survey participants are taking mushroom tea fusions to new flavorful levels by adding things like hibiscus and licorice root. Popular household favorites also include green or chamomile tea bags, and many folks reported adding lemon, lemon peel, a splash of orange juice, or other citrus for both the taste and the extra kick. A 65-year-old who filled out the survey and has taken mushroom tea “hundreds of times” reported they mix mushrooms with “Berry Red Zinger” tea bags and “never had anyone dislike the taste.”
Aside from making shrooms easier to digest, many of my survey participants reported they also enjoy the ritual of making their mushrooms into a tea. The process of breaking up their shrooms and brewing them has become its own ceremony to many, one that helps them prepare their mindset and set intention for the upcoming journey.
“Preparing something to drink is a ritual. Any technique that requires just a little bit of attention to a few variables focuses one’s awareness,” explained a 32-year-old who’s had mushroom tea around 20 times. “It’s part of a process of creating a space for an experience… [and can function] as a grounding exercise to allow the person to ‘be in the now’ for the duration of their drink.”
Besides making the magic mushrooms come on a little faster and possibly stronger, some folks report that the type of tea bag, herbs, or fruit they mix with their shroom tea can also have an effect on their mushroom experience.
“Anytime you drink a tea it changes your subjective experience,” says James W. Jesso, host of the Adventures Through the Mind podcast and author of Decomposing the Shadow: Lessons from the Psilocybin Mushroom. He explains that when you drink a tea, it has a certain effect on your experience: Whether that’s a calming sensation from lavender or an arousal effect from Catuaba bark,” says Jesso, “the art of tea is the art of herbal alchemy.”
Jesso also brings up psilocybin’s ability to change one’s “feeling state” to one where “feeling is an act of perception.” And that, perhaps, we’re extra perceptive to how our herbal teas are affecting us when we mix them with psilocybin. Lindsey Bartlett, cannabis industry writer and editor at Green Entrepreneur reports something similar: “I add in other tea ingredients for digestion and happiness, like tangerine, turmeric, white tea, marshmallow root, or peppermint.” Bartlett also says that she’ll add some seasonal fruit to her brew, and the trip itself can feel seasonal in turn. “In winter I was using blood orange juice and peels. The tea turned this deep, deep red and the trip was equally deep.”
Jesso also takes this idea one step further, that psilocybin-containing mushrooms are intelligent and speak to us in a way. Therefore, by combining psilocybin mushrooms with other plants in the form of a tea, we’re essentially opening up a line of communication with the intelligence of these other plants.
“If I’m working and living with a plant, if I’m consuming ashwagandha every day, for example, and I’ve been really trying to bring its effects into my body and change myself on some deeper level by having a relationship, then at some point, it might make sense to explicitly combine it with psilocybin to more deeply explore what that impact is,” explains Jesso. “Because I’m able to think and feel into myself in a deeper way [on psilocybin]. And like I said before about the intelligence of psilocybin, I think there’s a deeper capacity for the psilocybin to facilitate a dialogue between myself and the ashwagandha that otherwise wouldn’t be there, because ashwagandha doesn’t talk in human language the same way psilocybin seems to do when you take it.”
Psilocybe azurescens Stamets & Gartz
This species originates from around Astoria Oregon where it grows from driftwood among beach grasses in the sand dunes around the mouth of the Columbia River. It is easily cultivated in outdoor chip beds and has been introduced into the Lower Mainland of BC. It is considered very potent and exhibits very strong blue staining where bruised or in age.
Psilocybe baeocystis Singer & A.H. Sm.
This was a very common urban weed mushroom in residential and institutional landscaping, where it was especially associated with conifer bark chips used as mulches. Around Vancouver it was most abundant in the 1980’s but has virtually disappeared from developed urban settings since then. It still occurs in the interface areas of suburban developments with adjacent forested or agricultural lands. Psilocybe baeocyst is very potent and stains darkly blue.
Psilocybe cyanescens Wakef.
Known as “Wavy Caps” these often grow in recently landscaped areas where woodchips have been incorporated into soils and mulches and it is especially fond of alder chips. Fairly long term and stable populations may grow in disused clearings that have grown in with alder trees, broom and Rubus plants such as Blackberries and other brambles.
Psilocybe fimetaria (P.D. Orton) Watling
This European mushroom has appeared occasionally in grassy fields and grazed pastures in the Lower Mainland. It resembles the common weed mushroom Psilocybe stuntzii in having a membranous ring on its stem.
Psilocybe pelliculosa (A.H. Sm.) Singer & A.H. Sm.
These are little brown mushrooms (or LBMs) that grow in conifer debris and litter along trails and logging roads in second growth forest lands. They may also be found in landscaped areas in conifer mulch. It is a low potency species that resembles many other LBMs of the forest, including some potentially poisonous Galerina species. Eating this mushroom is not recommended.
Psilocybe semilanceata (Fr.) P. Kumm.
The Liberty Cap is the iconic Magic Mushroom of British Columbia. It grows from dead grass roots and is especially common in wet pastures where the grass roots form a heavy thatch. It can thrive in grazed fields but is not associated with animal dung. It can also grow in lawns and playing fields in wet coastal areas. Many magic mushroom enthusiasts consider this the most “user friendly” of our mushrooms.
Psilocybe stuntzii Guzmán & J. Ott
This is a common weed species of urban and suburban landscapes sometimes growing in large quantities in recently established lawns and plantings in woodchip mulch or where the soils contain woody materials. This mushroom is very low in potency and closely resembles some deadly Galerina species which often grow in the same habitat. Eating this mushroom is not recommended.
Psilocybe subfimetaria Guzmán & A.H. Sm.
This species closely resembles the Liberty Cap but lacks the exaggerated pointy nipple typical of Psilocybe semilanceata and has a heavy zone of veil fibrils around the stem. Psilocybe subfimetaria was first discovered in Vancouver in 1976 and also grows in Washington and Oregon. It may be the same as Psilocybe sierra which is found in Chile or merely a distinct form of Psilocybe semilanceata.
Gymnopilus aeruginosus (Peck) Singer
These are big brightly coloured and bitter tasting mushrooms that grow on wood
Panaeolus subbalteatus (Berk. & Broome) Sacc. = Panaeolus cinctulus (Bolton) Sacc.
This mushroom grows in very rich manured soils of newly laid lawns and landscaping. and can also be found in old leached horse manure and rotting straw around stables.
Fly Agaric or Amanita muscaria
This stereotypical toadstool with its white-spotted, bright red cap has a long history of use as an intoxicant in many parts of the northern hemisphere. Various reindeer-herding peoples of Northern Europe and Eurasia, and especially Siberia, used these as inebriants in shamanic practices, and the use of Fly agaric in traditional healing has been reported for First Nations of North America among the Ahnishinaubeg of Lake Michigan and the Dogrib of Great Slave Lake. This mushroom is common in British Columbia.
As if in protest, the stems of many species of mushroom instantly turn blue when they are plucked. The mechanism that underlies this ‘bluing’ is well known for some mushrooms, but bluing of psychedelic mushrooms that contain a compound called psilocybin has puzzled scientists for decades.
Dirk Hoffmeister at the Hans Knöll Institute in Jena, Germany, and his colleagues investigated the mushroom Psilocybe cubensis and discovered an enzyme that they named PsiP. When a mushroom is bruised or sliced, PsiP cuts off the phosphorus-containing portion of the psilocybin molecule, freeing the psychoactive molecule psilocin.
A second enzyme that the scientists named PsiL then destabilizes psilocin by stealing an electron from it. That forces individual psilocin molecules to fuse into pairs, trios and larger groupings. Some of the psilocin assemblies turn into blue compounds after losing hydrogen atoms. This process might explain the bluing of other psilocybin-laced mushrooms, such as Psilocybe azurescens.
Enzymes that behave like PsiP are also found in the human body. There, the psilocin produced by the enzymes creates psychedelic effects rather than a blue colour.
In Psilocybin Mushrooms of the World, Stamets notes that blue-staining, or "bluing", in magic mushrooms is not well understood. However, the process is thought to parallel the degradation of psilocyn - the primary active chemical in most magic mushrooms. Therefore, bluing should be avoided (through careful handling) because it probably reduces a mushroom's potency.
More recently, research has identified some of the chemicals and processes responsible for the bluing reaction in psychedelic mushrooms. These findings back up the theory that the bluing reaction is the result of active chemicals in the mushrooms degrading and oxidizing into other compounds. As such, the long-standing recommendation to avoid bruising magic mushrooms still holds.
Note: Blue-staining is not limited to hallucinogenic mushrooms, even though they are often associated. So don't use a blue-staining reaction as the sole indicator that you have a magic mushrooms species.
Discovering a contaminated mushroom culture can be heartbreaking. But, it’s essential to learn how to identify the early signs and act accordingly. Just because one culture or fruiting box has fallen victim to contamination doesn’t mean your entire operation has been compromised.
Discolouration is one of the most obvious signs of contamination. Many species of invasive moulds display distinct and bright colours. If you spot green, blue, grey, or black patches on or in your fruiting box, your culture is most likely contaminated. Do keep in mind, however, that small blue stains in the mycelium may just be bruising and not mould. Especially where it presses the mycelium against packaging, you may see some blue spots or bruising.
It’s not just other species of fungi that will try to inhabit your substrate. Bacteria can also crash the party. The presence of bacteria is often made evident by the production of slime. Slimy patches on your grain or mycelium signify excess moisture and possible bacterial contamination. You might also notice brown and yellow stains, as well as crusty or gel-like textures.
A healthy mushroom culture will run through grain or other substrates reasonably uniformly. Hyphae will dart off in different directions, but will eventually converge to consolidate the growing medium. If you notice any sectoring—where borders form and hyphae refuse to merge—you could be dealing with contamination from another fungal species.