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Kratom, called Mitragyna speciosa in Latin, is a plant species that belongs to the Asian flora and is native to South Asia and Thailand. In its native habitat it can become tree-sized, but in non-tropical regions it is usually kept as a shrub. Kratom seeds are very small in size and are contained in a seed pod that bursts when ripe, scattering the seeds. Interest in using kratom seeds to raise kratom plants usually comes from the use of kratom leaves for various herbal remedies, and from the plant's reputation as a psychoactive substance, capable of inducing a "high." It is important to note that due to the possibility of negative effects on human health, kratom is illegal or regarded as a controlled substance in many countries, and special care should be taken so that pets and children do not ingest the leaves.
In South Asia, kratom has been used for centuries as a stimulant, usually by manual laborers. It is also used as a medicinal plant to treat diarrhea and worms. Scientific studies show that depending on the dosage and on the individual user, kratom can work either as a sedative or a stimulant. Vendors of kratom often describe it as having antidepressant and calming as well as mild euphoric and hallucinogenic properties. Kratom leaves can be used for a variety of herbal products, and are often sold dried, in capsule or powder form, or as an herbal tonic. Side effects include dry mouth, vomiting, anorexia, and insomnia.
Raising kratom plants from seed can be a difficult process. The kratom seeds need to be very fresh to sprout, and they need very specific growing conditions to thrive. It can also be difficult to obtain real kratom seeds, because some online retailers have been known to sell seeds from another plant, Mitragyna parvifolia, and label them as kratom seeds. Buying and selling any parts of kratom, including the seeds, is illegal in some countries, including Thailand, Australia, Malaysia, Denmark, Finland, Poland, Myanmar, and Lithuania.
To successfully raise a plant from kratom seeds, one will need a large number of seeds, because only about 20% of planted seeds will usually germinate. Outside their native habitat, the seeds should be planted inside in a warm location, preferably with tropical temperatures. The seeds are very small in size, and need to be sprinkled on top of the soil, then barely covered. Kratom needs very moist, nutrient-rich soil and it is recommended to add a fertilizer regularly.
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