More about Caapi Leaves (Banisteriopsis Caapi) from Peruvian Cielo
Whole caapi leaves from Yellow Ayahuasca vines. Wild harvested in the tropical rainforest by the Shipibo-Conibo Indian community near Vista Alegre de Iparia, Rio Ucayali, Peru.
Banisteriopsis caapi is one of the many species of plants that grow in tropical South America. It is used, along with two other plants, to prepare Ayahuasca. Banisteriopsis caapi is the main component of Ayahuasca. There are many subspecies of Banisteriopsis caapi, depending on the region where the vine grows. The plant grows in the wild in Peru, Brazil, Bolivia, Equador, Colombia and other countries of the Amazon basin. Many of the local tribes have used it in their religious traditions for millennia.
Banisteriopsis caapi, is a plant native to the Amazonian region. It is a liana, meaning it grows as a vine, and can grow up to 30 meters in length. The bark of the Caapi vine is chocolate brown and smooth, and the leaves are oval shaped and green, with a glabrous (smooth) upper surface. The leaves are 8-18 cm long and 3.5-8 cm wide. Caapi vines produce inflorescences axillary or terminal, which are clusters of flowers growing in the leaf axils or at the ends of branches.
The main active constituent in Caapi leaves is harmaline, which acts as a reversible monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI). This means that it inhibits the enzyme that breaks down certain neurotransmitters, resulting in increased levels of these neurotransmitters in the brain. Harmaline is not hallucinogenic by itself, but when combined with other plants, it can create Ayahuasca, a powerful hallucinogenic brew.