Passionflower (Passiflora incarnata) originally grew in Asia and North-America but is cultivated almost everywhere else. The most important active ingredients belong to the harmala alkaloids, such as harmine and harmaline.
The plant was named Passiflora by Spanish explorers who thought that its flowers resembled three nails and a crown of thorns, reminding them of the Passion of Christ.
Passionflower is used as a mild sedative and as a sleeping aid. It is sometimes used as a hallucinogen at very high doses, though its primary therapeutic use is as a sedative.
Passionflower is usually prepared as a tea. The usual dose is 0.3 to 0.5 grams of extract per day.
For a strong hallucinogenic tea, steep 3-4 grams of extract in hot water for half an hour.
Pregnant women should avoid passionflower. Since it is a sedative, Passion flower may affect the ability to drive or operate heavy machinery, so it should be used with caution when engaging in these activities.
Passionflower is a mild MAO-inhibitor. When you combine it with particular psychoactive products or food, it can cause a headache, high blood pressure and/or nausea. Please refer to our MAO-Inhibitor page for a list of products to avoid when using strong MAO-inhibitors.