Though there’s been an uprising in the usage of plant medicine over the recent years, smokable plants have been used for their holistic benefits for centuries.
Smoking always fascinated me, even as a child. The curling fumes, translucent colors, and aroma captivated me not only for these qualities but for the relaxation I saw it had invoked within the user. I don’t care what the D.A.R.E. program said – fuck you, Nancy Reagan – smoking does look cool. The effects, however, are not – looking at you, tobacco. Still, I wanted that “cool factor”. I was an avid hookah smoker in college before falling for a much better plant, Mary Jane. And as my green thumb and knowledge of medicinal plants has grown, so has my curiosity for natural alternatives to smoking weed.
Bro…bro…bruh. Do you know how many plants we can be smoking?! A lot, that’s how much. Studies and techniques like Ayurvedic herbal smoking (also known as Dhumapana) have used herbs like lavender, rose, and mint for more than just breath freshness. Herbal smoking can help with ailments such as anxiety, depression, chest congestion, coughs, and chronic pain. Through my journey of learning how to relax, I’ve discovered many benefits of cannabis. In my sādhanā (or spiritual practice) I’ve gained clarity and alleviation to infamous Virgo tummy issues like nausea. As I geared up to teach cannabis-infused yoga classes, I also began meeting with local herbalists who only fueled my ardor. The plant world is huge and I believe that “in learning you will teach and in teaching you will learn.” I’m excited to start a new leg of my adventure as a plant parent, student and teacher of herbal medicine/plant magick.
Like everything and everywhere (all at once?) the city is made up of energy but unlike a lot of other places, New York City will require that you protect and cleanse your energy more often. Frequent cleansing means finding new ways to protect yourself. Not only has working with different herbs helped me with this but also with manifesting, meditation, as well as expanding my palette – my first attempt at a lavender cannabis chai knocked me on my butt for three hours. To top it off, combining additional herbs with your weed can expand its toke life, saving you money on two types of gas in this economy.
I trust that any illness can be cured with something natural from the Earth we live on. From ashwaghanda’s anxiety relief to mugwort’s dream recalling properties, these herbs are just a few from the vast plethora that can help you achieve new levels of relaxation and consciousness. Check out these five smokable herb alternatives to marijuana.
**As always, please consume cannabis responsibly…and not at all if you’re under 21 in the U.S…or 18 in Canada. And be sure to consult your primary care physician if you’re skeptical about any other natural herbs.**
One of the oldest medicinal plants to be used, ashwagandha is native to India and parts of Africa. Best known for its adaptogen qualities that allow mind and body relaxation, the plant also has a history of being used for muscle growth, chronic pain, and anti-aging effects.
One of my favorite magical plants to use, lavender comes in clutch for everything. Can’t sleep? Lavender. Headache? Lavender. Protection? Yup. Lavender. Boyfriend acting up? Bad credit? Right again! Lavenduhhh. And if you’re trying to be knocked out, this plant also pairs beautifully with an indica strain.
Lean a little bit closer, babe, I’m here to tell you that roses actually do not smell like poo poo. They’re actually much more aromatic and flavorful. Rose is a great antioxidant that also helps with boosting the mood and bodily stimulation…ahem. I’ve been working with rose for awhile now, usually in the form of water for hydrating my face and hair. Yet, I’ve found that this flower leaves me happy and chill no matter if it’s in the form of a bouquet, water, or smoke.
After lavender I would have to say peppermint has been another fun herb to smoke and work with. Of course it tastes good but it’s also chock full of magical benefits. Smoking mint can not only be used for upset stomachs and bad breath but also for aiding in communication, enhancing intuition, and keeping trouble away.
If you’re trying to clear negative energy while going to infinity and beyond then mugwort is your herb. Popular in traditional Chinese medicine, mugwort can be used for alleviating menstrual pain and muscle aches. Not only does it pair well with cannabis and lavender, mugwort alone will have your head in the clouds with its lucid dreaming effects.