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         When the Spanish arrived in Sonora they added this plant to their pharmacopeia and called it cardosanto, which should not be mistranslated to blessed thistle (Cnicus benedictus). I wonder if they actually brought this stuff to Florida because it grows everywhere here! it's use in Hispanic cultures includes as a sedative and analgesic tea, including for use to help alleviate migraine headaches. The seeds are taken as a laxative by herbalists. The seed-pods secrete a pale-yellow latex substance when cut open. Steam distillation can easily capture these goods! This argemone resin contains berberine and protopine, and is used medicinally as a sedative by alternative practitioners. Argemone mexicana is also used by traditional healers in Mali for malaria.


Warning: Large doses of this plant may be toxic!

What a wide range of medicinal uses the Prickly poppy plant has had to offer people in the past. If something from the ground was used back then to deal with malaria, imagine what all of the wild plants out there have the potential to do for us. These wise people from the past had a high level of respect and gratitude for nature. At the same time, I don't want to get too carried away and influence people into assuming everything is just safe to take without doing the research. You need to understand what you're dealing with, no matter what it is.


Always remember that while this cacti is made available that it should be handled with extreme caution. One should thoroughly conduct their research and know the precautions, side effects, proper preparation methods and dosages no matter if it's a natural plant or prescription. Most substances interact in a certain way, this is why we study chemistry. The prickly poppy ( Argemon mexicana ) is no different I would assume, because it behaves like substances because it contains them. This means it should be thought of as any other drug by default. Knowing which plants or drugs not to combine can save lives and prevent any logical reasons for further prohibitions.


Today science has confirmed chemicals in this sacred medicine to have sedative effects. This science is classified as phytochemistry (related to chemistry and plant pharmacology). The prized chemicals are known as berberine and protopine. Large enough dosages of these compounds can be dangerous, but of course there are other things to realize. One thing is to always remember that the lethal dose of a chemical when synthesized vs how much tea made from organic material you'd have to drink is astronomical. As with any other medicine, dosage always counts. While a lot of modern medicine works by giving the individual a small enough amount of the disease or a poison, some herbal medicine works in the same manner.


Regardless of the modern precautions we have to take because of the potential dangers of mixing herbs with prescription drugs, it has not changed the historic reputation of such useful plants. Ever heard of the Seri of Sonora, Mexico? Well, they used the whole plant whether it was fresh or dried. It was often made into infusions for kidney pain, and to cleanse the body. Prickly poppy was also added to the pharmacopia when the Spanish arrived in Sonora. They just keep drinking it until they get better!


If this gift was used many years ago for kidney pain by people with lesser technology that that of the modern world, why are is it not a mainstream option in large retail stores? From all of my research there are enough plants with active pain relieving constituents to make a huge list of a-z pain relievers, hundreds per letter. Pain medications should be the last resort I believe, but they are still some-what necessary. The first thing a person should do I believe is to stop the source of the pain to begin with. Never the less, sometimes we all need some relief and having natural options around is always a plus.

Organic Prickly Poppy Scientific Name Argemone Mexicana



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