Friday, July 20: This is today’s WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside.
Inside. I like to snap multiple views of something and often the inside of something is even more interesting than the outside.
One day while hiking on Jebel Akhdar, my Omani friend Moo plucked a spiny egg-shaped seed capsule about the size of a walnut and opened it up. Inside were a bunch of seeds which he told me have hallucinogenic properties.
This is apparently called datura stramonium, an invasive weed also known as Jimson weed, datura, or “loco weed.”
This plant, which grows wild all over Oman, especially on Jebel Akhdar, and other warm and moderate regions worldwide, has been used for centuries as herbal medicine to relieve asthma symptoms or as an analgesic during surgery or bone-setting. It is also a powerful hallucinogen, used spiritually for the intense visions it produces. Datura intoxication can lead to delirium, hyperthermia, tachycardia, bizarre behavior and even pronounced amnesia.
Its careless use has led to hospitalization and even death.
The fragrant trumpet-shaped flowers bloom through the summer, and the walnut-sized spiny seed capsule splits into four chambers at maturity to reveal dozens of black seeds.