INOCYBE AERUGINASCENS

Fibrous Head, Fibrous Cap, Inocybe aeruginascens Babos

Inocybe aeruscinascens is amongst the rare members of the large Inocybe genus to be psilocybin-producing. Because this genus of 1400 species include a mixture of edible, psychoactive and poisonous mushrooms, it has the reputation of being a “mycological minefield”, it is therefore advised to would-be psychonauts to refrain from ingesting these fungi from the wild. Inocybe aeruginascens is widely distributed in Europe and other temperate areas and was first documented by I. Ferencz in Ócsa in Hungary in the spring of 1965.
From the latin roots aerug- (“blue-green”) and ascens (“becoming”), Inocybe aeruginascens is the psilocybian mushroom that “becomes blue-green” when bruised. It is said that the bluing reaction upon bruising is due to the presence of psilocin but to this day, opinions are torn. It was an unfortunate intoxication back in 1983, while mistaking Inocybe aeruginascens to the common fairy ring mushroom Marismius oreades, that revealed for the first time the presence of psilocybin in this specie.
The exceptional feature of this small mycorrhizal tabacco-coloured fungus is that it contains almost equal amounts of three serotonin-like hallucinogenic compounds: psilocybin, baeocystin, and aeruginascin. Aeruginascin is analog to psilocybin and is also closely related to the frog skin toxin bufotenine (5-HTQ), a potent 5-HT3 receptor agonist.

Jochen Gartz, a German mycologist and chemist, who first discovered and named aeruginascin in the ‘80s, has been closely studying this indole derivative and his studies show that it modifies the pharmacological action of psilocybin. This entourage effect unique to I. aeruginascin seems to be responsible in fostering a persistent “good trip” experience.
Studies report that consumers (even accidental ingestions), have never had a “bad trip” after ingesting the species, hinting that perhaps Inocybe aeruginescens could be a better option for therapeutic use than psilocybin is.
Gartz says that this mushroom, because of its chemical structure, is unlikely to cross the blood-brain barrier, perhaps limiting risks for psychotic episodes and offering an overall smoother experience to help treat conditions such as cluster headaches, depression and other health disorders.

Visual Description

• Cap: generally small to medium, thin and fleshy, conic to convex. Cap flattens and presents short radial cracks with age. When young, the margin of the cap is incurved. Diameter is less than 5cm. Cap is fibrous thus his name “fibrous hat”. Coloration varies from buff to light yellow brown. The disk (center of the top of the cap) is often darker. Fruiting body has greenish tones and bruises blue. It is not hydrophanous and appears dry. • Lamellas: dense, thick and crowded, weakly attached to the stem. Colored pale brown to tobacco brown. • Stipe: thin and fibrous. 2-7 cm long, 3 to 8 mm thick. Hollow inside. Coloration is pale grey. Usually doesn’t have a ring. • Spores: clay brown. • Microscopic size: 6–9.5 x 4.5 micrometres • Odor and taste: referred to as displeasing soapy odor, many also as musty or spermatid.

Potency Description

Stijve and Kuyper (1985) reported a maxima of 0.28% psilocybin, 0.008% psilocin, 0.8% baeocystin. Gartz (1986b, 1992, 1994) reported 0.40% psilocybin, no psilocin, 0.52% baeocystin and 0.35% aeruginascin.

Habitat Origin

Spread widely across central Europe and western North America. Found in temperate regions, growing in moist sandy areas (including dunes). Grows in a mycorrhizal relationship with poplar, linden, oak and willow trees.

Strain Effects

This mushroom is often mistaken to other edible species. Famous mycologist Gartz says eaters of these accidental “intoxications” usually report calm, euphoric episodes, often with “colorful mystical experiences.” He believes that for this reason, this specie might be a good candidate for treating various mental health disorders such as depression, cluster headaches and, migraines.. Key words on effects include: flight of the soul, euphoria, visuals, disconnection, motor skills may be affected. // Aeruginascin, an analog to psilocybin that was first discovered by Jochen Gartz in 1987 in this very specie and, is currently studied because suspected in persistently helping foster euphoric dysphoria-free experiences.

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