Simon's Legal Highs

Simon’s Wild Lettuce (Lactuca Virosa) Guide

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Lactuca virosa, commonly called wild lettuce or opium lettuce, is a plant with psychoactive effects. Wild lettuce can be found growing freely in various regions of the world including Australia, America, Southern Europe and India.

Lactuca virosa has yellow flowers and can grow to be 2 meters tall. The name of the plant stems from its “milk-juice” (lactuca) and from the word poisonous (virosa). The milky sap is bitter, and has a narcotic smell.

This sap, lactucarium is present in all species of lettuce (hence the name lactuca), but wild lettuce has the most of this juice while garden lettuce (Lactuca sative) contains the least.

Wild lettuce has been used in medicine for hundreds of years for its various healing properties. As the name opium lettuce suggests, the plant has opium-like qualities, and has been used as a substituent for opium.


Wild lettuce

Effects of the wild lettuce:

Though the effects of wild lettuce are similar to those of opium, they are decidedly milder. Opium lettuce is a sedative, said to induce  a “hypnotic state marked by strange dreams”.*

The leaves of Lactuca virosa may be boiled in water to make a tea that has slightly sedative effects. However, it is the plant’s “milk-juice” that contains the largest concentration of active compounds.

Wild lettuce may be prepared and consumed in several ways.

/See the preparation guide for details./

Consumption of the substance causes the user to feel more relaxed, often euphoric and, at higher amounts, highly intoxicated.

Lactuca virosa provides a milder version of the effects opium does without many of its side effects such as nausea. Still, opium lettuce can have negative effects, and overdose can result in death, so caution should always be exercised.


*Source: Drugs-forum


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Wild lettuce guide




 Wild lettuce – legal status


Wild lettuce is not a controlled plant in most countries. This means it is legal to buy, possess, cultivate and trade the plant and all parts of it. The substances present in Lactuca virosa are also not controlled, which means extracts made from the plant are also legal.

While opium lettuce does not seem to be specifically controlled or illegal in any countries, it may still be banned categorically. Islamic countries, to be specific, may adopt Sharia law into their legal system. This law prohibits the use of all intoxicants and considers them an abomination.

Also, laws are subject to change, so please make sure to check the appropriate legislation in your country before making the decision to buy or try wild lettuce.


Buy wild lettuce


Wild lettuce is available at several online vendors and shops. I can personally vouch for and recommend two online shops selling wild lettuce. They are based in the US and the Netherlands, respectively, and ship globally.


Buy wild lettuce – US

You can buy Wild lettuce at the following link:

Buy Wild lettuce and wild lettuce extract /Shipped from the US./


Buy wild lettuce – Netherlands

You can buy Wild lettuce at the following link:

Buy Wild lettuce /Shipped from the Netherlands./


Wild lettuce effects


The effects of wild or opium lettuce are, as the name indicates rather similar to those of opium. Both act as a sedative, though the effects of wild lettuce are much milder.

The leaves of Lactuca viruso may be used to achieve the desired effects, but the plant’s milky juice is the most effective. After extraction, the white sap changes to brown and hardens.

The main active ingredients in lactucarium are lactucin and lactucopicrin. It is thought that these compounds are responsible for the effects of the wild lettuce, though a research conducted in 1944 concluded that lactucarium has no actual effects. However, no studies since confirmed or refuted these claims.

Nevertheless, wild lettuce enjoys moderate popularity as an opium substitute and as a substance to induce intoxication, as well as to help getting to sleep.


Cognitive effects

Wild lettuce consumed in the form of a tea or smoked has been reported to have mild euphoric effects. Users may feel intoxicated and the experience is, in general, considered to be pleasant.

Lactuca virosa is a sedative and users may feel their anxiety lessen, reaching a calmer state. The most generally experienced cognitive effect is sleepiness.


Physical effects

Wild lettuce has been reported to act as a painkiller. Lactuca virosa relaxes both mind and body, which is generally considered a positive effect. However, in larger amounts, breathing may slow excessively, and cardiac arrest can occur (similar to opiates).


After effects

Opium lettuce has no after effects in the sense of a hangover. When used in moderation, no toxicity or addiction has been reported. Wild lettuce has several health benefits that persists after the primary effects have passed, see below.


Sources: Drugs-forumErowidWebMD


Dangers of wild lettuce


Wild lettuce is considered to be safer than its “big brother”, opium. However, it still has some side effects and dangers that need to be considered, especially when consuming larger amounts.

Lactuca virosa is considered to be a poisonous plant by the FDA. In larger quantities, it can lead to toxicity with symptoms such as anxiety, nausea and loss of consciousness. Extreme amounts may even be lethal, as overdose can cause cardiac arrest.

Another side effect of wild lettuce is urinary retention, which is why it should not be used by anyone with an enlarged prostate (BPH). Wild lettuce may also cause an allergic response in users sensitive to the he Asteraceae/Compositae family.




Interactions with wild lettuce


Wild lettuce is a sedative, and taking several forms of sedative poses a serious health risk. If you are using any kind of sedative, consult your doctor before trying wild lettuce.

However, not all combinations are dangerous. Wild lettuce is often used in combination with valerian to create a tea to help with getting to sleep.



Wild lettuce health benefits


Lactuca virosa was used extensively in medicine in the 19th century, mainly as an opium substituent. With the advent of modern medicine, medicinal use of the plant has diminished in most countries. However, it still enjoys widespread use in Iran, in accordance with the effects recorded by Avicenna over a thousand years ago.

Wild lettuce is generally used for its sedative properties. Tea made from the leaves can help those battling insomnia, anxiety or neurosis. Wild lettuce also serves as a painkiller, especially for rheumatic and menstrual pain.

Lactuca virosa is also reported to help with asthma and coughing in general. There are also accounts of wild lettuce helping with urinary tract problems and atherosclerosis, though evidence of these effects is somewhat lacking.


Sources: WebMDrxlist, Drugs-forum


Wild lettuce preparation and consumption


Wild lettuce may be bought and consumed in various forms. The effects of each plant may vary greatly, so dosages are just an approximation. Opium lettuce is also a relatively little-known substance.

The dried leaves of wild lettuce may be used both for smoking and for making a tea. The threshold amount seems to be around 10 grams, though more may be necessary to achieve the desired effects. Still, with the aforementioned dangers, make sure to be cautious when increasing the dosage.


To make a wild lettuce tea, place 1-2 spoonfuls of the dried leaves in a cup of hot water. Let it steep for about 10-15 minutes, then filter out the leaves.

The tea is reported to have a markedly bitter taste, so using honey and/or lemon is recommended. This brew is often used as a sort of sleep-well tea.

The leaves may be rolled up into a joint and then smoked. The cigarette has a relaxing effect, with mild euphoria experienced by some users. The smoke is, like the tea, reported to taste rather bitter.

The third way to use opium lettuce is to make an extract from it. The leaves are soaked in water for several hours. The water should be heated, but not boil.

After about 8 hours, filter the brew and press the remaining liquid from the leaves as well (the leaves may now be discarded). Let the water evaporate until a gum-like substance remains. This may be smoked from an opium pipe or similar paraphernalia.

The extract may also be consumed sublingually. The effects are reported to be as strong as with smoking, but the duration is longer; up to an hour from 20 minutes.


Buy wild lettuce

Wild lettuce is available at several online vendors and shops. I can personally vouch for and recommend two online shops selling wild lettuce. They are based in the US and the Netherlands, respectively, and ship globally.

Buy wild lettuce – US

You can buy wild lettuce at the following link:

Buy wild lettuce and wild lettuce extract /Shipped from the US./

Buy wild lettuce – Netherlands

You can buy wild lettuce at the following link:

Buy wild lettuce /Shipped from the Netherlands./



Wild lettuce trip reports


“My first successful time with “wild lettuce opium” I took 8 large hits, and held them in for a good thirty seconds, then lay down on my couch. Nothing happened for about 3- 5 minutes and I wasn’t really expecting much anyway. Then a very comfortable, tingling warmth settled over my body and I was deliciously relaxed for about 2 hours.

Also, my mind seemed to move in a gentle flow rather than racing in circles. After the two hours I went to bed. I slept well and had vivid dreams. They weren’t particularly meaningful dreams, but they were satisfying.

– Excerpt from Sprout’s wild lettuce trip report

“Later, when I was sure I was feeling completely normal, I smoked it in a homemade pipe. I had not used any other drugs or medications for several weeks. I really didnt expect anything to happen with such a small dose. I was wrong, however, and soon after taking the few hits available, I felt an unmistakeable opium like high. Mild, but definately there.

Euphoria, well being, comfort with myself, enhanced colours. I enjoyed it thoroughly. It even had a sweet taste, somewhat similar to opium. I will begin collecting more of the substance soon. A good method of collecting the resin would be useful, as it’s a bit sticky and hard to work with. It’s not as good as real opium or marijuana, but it’s free and legal, and the stuff grows everywhere. ”

– Excerpt from Daytrippr’s wild lettuce trip report


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Share your own trip report in the comment section below (to ensure anonymity don’t use your real name or real email address when submitting trip reports)!

Some of the information presented here might be outdated or incorrect (check “last updated” below). If you are planning to try out any of the substances, make sure to to research them yourself as well.

I’m 100% committed to safe and responsible legal high consumption. If you have a few minutes to spare please read my blog post about responsible and safe legal drugs use.


Wild lettuce is only one of the legal highs included in Simon’s legal high guide, check out the others as well.

If you’re interested in more legal, natural sedatives, check out Simon’s Guide to Natural Sedatives!

Last updated: 2015. 11. 23.


Article Name
Simon's Wild Lettuce (Lactuca virosa) Guide
A guide detailing the properties, effects and legal status of wild lettuce, including trip reports.