Peyote & Other Psychoactive Cacti
Reviewed by Leonard Mercado
Peyote Foundation Journal
Twenty years after Gottlieb's original issue of this reference manual, Ronin Publishing has just released an updated version with beautiful cover and new material. This might now be considered the "must have" book for people interested in medicinal and sacramental cacti. Aside from Peyote, Trichocereus, Ariocarpus, Coryphantha and other genera are in this illustrated guide. (32 illustrations, 86 pages)
Cultivation procedures are thoroughly covered in the five new chapters written by Derek Westlund, first Chief Curator of The Peyote Foundation. These new sections will be a valuable aid for anyone who has questions about the most efficient means of caring for their own sacramental gardens. Growing from seed, cuttings, and grafting are detailed in an easy to understand manner. Thanks to project editor, Sebastian Orfali for including the brief essay "Natural Populations of Peyote in Decline", which I authored for this new publication and which follows the introduction. It is important to discuss peyoteís fragile ecological status right from the outset of any full treatment of the subject.
Attorney Richard Glen Boire, publisher of The Entheogen Law Reporter, has contributed a new chapter titled, "Mescaline, Peyote, and the Law". Other chapters include, "The Experience", "Other Cacti of Central Mexico", "San Pedro", "Increasing Potency", and "Dictionary of Cactus Alkaloids". Boire is also the author of Marijuana Law by Ronin Publishing.
Though this book does not cover all aspects of peyotism as generally as does E.F. Andersonís Peyote, the Divine Cactus, it digs deeper into areas which those of us who've done our background research need to know, with a focus on cultivation and botany. I am happy to say that this re-issuing of Peyote and Other Psychoactive Cacti will help increase the public's awareness of the sacred cacti for many years to come.