Salvia Divinorum Dosage, Measurements and Storage

Q. Regular Salvia leaves are often sold by the ounce. How many dried leaves are in an ounce?
A. This can vary quite a lot. An average, large, mature leaf weighs about 1/3 gram dry. However, a typical harvest of leaves will include leaves of all sizes. A typical ounce usually contains 100 - 200 leaves. It is generally best not to estimate dose by leaf count, but rather by weight.

Q. How many doses are in one ounce of dried Salvia leaves when using the quid method of ingestion?
A: A dose using the quid method is generally believed to be between 2-10 grams of dried leaf material, depending on the strength of effects you are after. It is best to rehydrate the leaves with a little water for 5-10 minutes before chewing them.

General Quid-Chewing Guidelines
1 ounce of dried leaf will give you:
  • 14 light doses (each dose being 2g)
  • 5 moderate doses (each dose being 6g)
  • 3 strong doses (each dose being 10g)

Q. How many smoked doses are in an ounce of regular dried leaf?
A. It varies, depending on the potency of the leaf and the sensitivity of the individual. A person of average sensitivity should be able to achieve moderately strong effects from 1/2 gram (.50g) of average potency leaf. To achieve the full effects from a given quantity of leaf, it is very important to use the proper smoking technique.

General Smoking Guidelines
1 ounce of dried leaf will give you:
  • 112 light doses (each dose being .25g)
  • 56 moderate doses (each dose being .50g)
  • 37 strong doses (each dose being .75g)

Q. 5X extract fortified leaves often sold by the gram. How many doses are in a gram?
A. This depends on potency of the particuar product and the individual's sensitivity. The 5x extracts which are available contain between 10-15 mg of salvinorin-A per gram. If you are working with this product, a starting dose is about 1/20 gram (.05g) of the extract. If you find that the effects are too mild for you at this level, then gradually increase the dose until you find the level that works best for you.

General 5X Smoking Guidelines
1 gram of 5X extract fortified leaves will give you:
  • 20 light doses (each dose being .05g)
  • 10 moderate doses (each dose being .10g)
  • 4 strong doses (each dose being .25g)

Q. How can I measure 1/20 gram (.05g)?
A. It would be a good idea to get an accurate scale that at least measures by tenths of a gram (0.1g). Scales of this accuracy can be easily purchased for $40 and under. Measure out 1/10 gram and divide that in half to give you a dose that is equal to 1/20 gram. Once you've got your doses measured out, package and store them separately. Gelatin capsules work perfectly for storage as do small aluminum foil envelopes.

If you do not have a scale that can measure this quantity, you can roughly divide one gram into 20 even parts. First divide the gram into four even piles, then divide each of those into five. It is important that you divide it up as evenly as possible. Either package and store all 20 parts separately or just keep one part separate to use as a visual reference to estimate the correct amount to use in the future.

Q. Is it possible to estimate salvinorin-A content of leaves without having an organic chemistry lab at one's disposal?
A. Yes, it can be approximated using the law of large numbers (averages). The data in this section uses pre-existing statistical figures, based on labratory results, regarding the average salvinorin-A content in a specified amount of regular Salvia leaves. On average, leaves contain between 1-4 mg of Salvinorin-A per gram of leaf material. Since leaves vary in potency, from one leaf to the next, it would be safe to assume that you will have a nice mix high and low potency leaves. With that said, use the average and you'll get an approximate potency of 2.5 mg of salvinorin-A per gram of leaf material. With this basic formula and an accurate gram scale, you can estimate the salvinorin-A content of leaves.

If you don't have a gram scale you could use generalized volume measurement. Please note that this type of volume measurement is non-static and unreliable due to the factor of packing density. The figures below are based on an observation that a level teaspoon of leaf powder weighs 1.37 grams and an estimated potency of 2.5 mg of salvinorin-A per gram of dried leaf.

This roughly translates to be:
    1 level tsp. dried leaf powder = about 3.43 mg salvinorin
    1/2 level tsp. dried leaf powder = about 1.71 mg salvinorin-A
    1/4 level tsp. dried leaf powder = about 0.86 mg salvinorin-A
    1/8 level tsp. dried leaf powder = about 0.43 mg salvinorin-A

Q. How should I store Salvia leaves and how long will they last?
A. Put them in an air-tight container and store in a dark place. A clean glass canning jar works very well (1 quart Mason jar). Storing the jar inside a kitchen cabinet or medicine chest will keep it away from light. Stored this way leaves will keep their potency for many months or even years. Storing dry leaves in a sealed jar in a freezer may give even longer shelf life.

Q. How long can I store Salvia leaves or extract fortified leaves without them loosing potency?
A. Probably for decades. The active principal, salvinorin-A, is quite stable and can be stored at room temperature. It is probably a good idea to store it in a dark location, such as a drawer or cupboard, so that it is not exposed to the potentially harmful effects of UV light.

Table of Contents:

I. Salvia Divinorum Basics
II. Salvia Methods of Use
III. Salvia Dosage, Measurements and Storage
IV. Salvia Health Concerns
V. Salvia Divinorum Legal Status & Legality Issues
VI. Salvia Troubleshooting
VII. Accreditations, Links and References