Solutions for a Sacred,
Banisteriopsis caapi, is also known as ayahuasca, caapi and yagé (primarily in Columbia and Ecuador).
In Brazil it is more commonly known as Jagube.
This powerful vine, contains significant quantities of Beta-carbolines such as Harmala and Harmaline, and has been used by the indigenous healers of the Amazon Rainforest for thousands of years. During the ancient periods of its use, it was mostly restricted to the shamans of the different tribes, who used it as part of a range of healing plants in ceremonies. At these times the Jagube was widely available and there was no shortage of it.
The demand for Jagube has increased dramatically in the last twenty years, primarily because of growing interest in Ayahuasca, not only in South America but also in the USA and Europe.
The recent popularity of Ayahuasa comes primarily from the increased interest in its spiritual properties and associated visionary experiences. Ayahuasca, which has the same name as the vine only, is in fact a mixture of the banisteriopsis caapi and an admixture compound containing a presence of dimethyl triptamine, such as psycotria viridis).
Due to its increased popularity, and the long growing cycles (from five to ten years), there is now a recognised shortage of wild Caapi, particularly in Peru where the Ayahuasca tourism trade is strongest.
As a result a number of researchers and activists such as ourselves, are rushing to save the beloved Caapi vine from extinction, which is now a very real possibility.
The first thing that we are keen to explore is the flowering processes, and the methods of seed generation and germination in comparison to it’s Peruvian relations. If our findings are proven to be correct, we may be able to provide some much needed guidance to the growing number of plantation managers setting up in Peru.
Our research intends to prove that the Brazilian original versions must be planted going forwards to ensure the strain will continue to survive with the correct genomes.
Once we prove the Brazilian building blocks of our theory, we will go on to implement the new methodology of plantation systems using Banisteriopsis Caapi as a perfect plant to demonstrate enhanced growth and strength.
We hope to also be able to take the vine from the forest, and plant it into a field based monoculture plantation. If this is successful we can envisage a time when the plant does not become endangered again, because it would no longer need virgin rain forest within which to grow. Mothers Garden is excited to begin this process in 2019.
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Our main research center is located on Barbados in the Caribbean.
This location was chosen particularly for it’s dependence on imported food, and it’s focus on agricultural systems developments for small island sustainability.
The UN’s Agenda 21 proposals for small islands were written in Barbados, and as such, it was an appropriate place to carry out our research and demonstrations. Our hope is to be able to change farming systems in the Caribbean to become more flexible, productive and in better symbiosis with the natural world.
The second research center is located in Pucallpa, Peru close to the Brazilian border.
The third is planned to be in Europe, and shortly we will begin to explore locations in Brazil, where the plant medicine genes have found to be the strongest.
For example, the Brazilian Banesteriopsis Caapi (Ayahuasca) flowers strongly in the spring, producing numerous seeds, whereas the Peruvian strains rarely flower and produce no seeds at all. This is due to hybridisation and cloning, which weakens the plant DNA each time it is copied.
Our hope is to develop the powerful and original strains from Brazil, expanding the range of plants that we work with once we find a perfect location there.