San Pedro Cactus - Trichocereus pachanoi


San Pedro (Trichocereus pachanoi) is Unscheduled in the United States. However, it is a gray area of the law because the cactus contains, Mescaline, which is a Schedule I chemical.

Addictive Potential: None

Emergency Room Visits Yearly: Unknown

Mandatory Minimum Sentence: NA

Mechanism of Action: The primary active constituent, Mescaline, binds to, and activates the serotonin 5-HT2A receptor



The San Pedro cactus, also called Trichocereus pachanoi, is a fast-growing columnar cactus native to the Andes of Peru and Ecuador. They are a very hardy and easy to grow columnar cactus, often growing a foot per year and reaching heights of 20 feet. It is ribbed, with usually 6 to 8 ribs. It is a branching cactus and often has many side arms.

It was first used sacramentally around 3000 B.C. The Peruvian archaeologist Rosa Fung, at the Chavín site of Las Aldas, found the remains of this cactus rolled up into a cigar-like form that were dated back to 2200 B.C. Also, a Chavín stone carving from a temple at Chavín de Huantar in northern Peru, dated to around 1300 B.C., shows their principal deity holding a San Pedro cactus. It was supposedly named after Saint Peter because it was, like Peter, thought to hold the keys to heaven.

It is currently legal in the United States to cultivate as long as it is not intended for the purposes of human consumption. As for international law, in most countries it is legal to cultivate. Although, in countries where possession of mescaline and related compounds is illegal and highly penalized, cultivation for the purposes of consumption is most likely illegal and also highly penalized. This is the case in Australia, Canada, Sweden, Germany, New Zealand, and Norway, where it is currently legal to cultivate San Pedro for gardening and ornamental purposes, but not for consumption.



San Pedro Cactus (youtube censored version)

San Pedro Cactus (uncensored version/members only)


San Pedro contains a number of psychoactive alkaloids:

  • Mescaline, or 3,4,5-trimethoxyphenethylamine/0.3 - 2.3%
  • 3,4-dimethoxyphenethylamine
  • 4-hydroxy-3-methoxyphenethylamine
  • 3-hydroxy-4,5-dimethoxyphenethylamine
  • 4-hydroxy-3,5-dimethoxyphenethylamine
  • anhalonidine
  • anhalinine
  • hordenine
  • tyramine
  • 3-methoxytyramine


San Pedro Cactus (Trichocereus pachanoi) and Mescaline Extraction Recipes:

Trichocereus Pachanoi (San Pedro Cactus) Recipe


Trip Reports:

San Pedro Experience



San Pedro and the Shamanic Tradition of Northern Peru









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