3.4.20 Skullcap

Skullcap #

Binomial / Botanical Name Scutellaria Lateriflora
Street Names Mad Dog Skullcap
Major Active Compound Baicalin; Misc
Indigenous Source North America
Form Herb
RoA Oral / Smoked
Personal Rating On Shulgin Scale + / +*, ++


I had sampled skullcap a couple of years previously, but my notes were sparse. On the adapted Shulgin scale they indicated a + when drank as a tea, and a +* when smoked. Translating this, I felt a very minor effect, possibly too minor to articulate, but enjoyed slightly more potency when I smoked it.

This was contrary to most Internet reports, which claimed greater effect from tea than smoking. Regardless, I decided to re-test by smoking, as on the evening in question I had a full stomach, which could have reduced the efficacy of oral ingestion.

As I wasn’t feeling at the top of my game, I was hoping for some sort of mood lift, or less optimistically, for an anxiolytic response. My expectations, however, were not at all high.

T+0:00 Filling the bowl of a small bong, I take five large hits, in fairly quick succession. [7pm]

None of the hits are terrible in terms of taste, although they are perhaps slightly harsh. On the first hit, I feel a slight and momentary head rush. Thereafter, I don’t feel any obvious response or any immediate form of intoxication.

T+0:03 Sitting down at my desk, perhaps I do feel slightly better. The stomach anxiety has diminished, and there is a slight fuzziness there or thereabouts.

I am not stoned, but I do feel a mild but marked reaction. There is nothing unpleasant about it, but it isn’t a high or any form of euphoria. It is simply a more chilled heady feeling and accompanying state of mind.

T+0:10 Ten minutes in, these effects are still with me. I feel a gentle calmness, relative to where I was beforehand. There is a distinct headiness about this which is quite soothing.

T+0:20 I am still relaxed. Throughout I have retained mental clarity, and at no stage have I felt that my functionality has been impaired. It is a solid and reasonably interesting experience.

T+0:30 The ride is starting to subside a little, although I am still calm and chillaxed.

T+1:00 The effects are now less pronounced, and I am close to base, but certainly not at base. It strikes me that I could have been more deeply sedated earlier than I thought I was.

T+3:00 Most of the headiness has gone. I feel more or less back at baseline, although anxiety is still absent and I still feel calm in a naturally sedated way. I am wondering if there will be a knock-on effect for the night’s sleep.

The night’s sleep was a little strange. There were weird dreams, which could be unconnected, but the sleep tended to have the same skullcap headiness quality to it, and this was definitely there when I awoke in the morning. There was no discomfort but it was present and it only dissipated after an hour or so, with the help of a cup of filtered coffee.

Following this experiment, I am now left wondering about skullcap consumed as tea. Given that smoking touched a fairly pleasant ++ experience, this may well be worth another fling.

I should also state that the skullcap I used was very dry, and had been lying around for some time. This suggests that fresh skullcap might produce an even stronger ride. Bear in mind here that with a higher quality sample five bong hits may well be overdoing it.

Finally, it is worth noting that a number of species of scutellaria are cited as being psychoactive. Of these, scutellaria nana is sometimes claimed to be the most potent, although it may be difficult to procure.