Yeah, I wish I had some to post of ginseng!!! I can show you all the companion plants...I have just about every one of them on my land. I am guessing that at some point in the past the place probably had ginseng, but somebody wiped it out and never bothered to plant any of the seeds. Can the ground be too "rocky" for ginseng to grow??? There is a lot of what the local folks call "quartz outcropping", but the soil seems to be good and everything else grows there.
Here in Tennessee I find that ginseng loves rocky soil.
In fact the most wild ginseng I ever dug in one trip was 3 lbs 1.5 oz and the hollow was named rockey hollow. There was lots of rock above ground in this hollow and the dirt was rock chip filled.
Also I find some really good ginseng growing on or around the lower 1/3 of limestone bluffs around here.
Below is a pic of one that I found a couple years ago growing near the bottom part of a bluff.
Just look at how rock chip filled that dirt is (if you can call that dirt)... but that is what I dug it out of.
Seng loves dirt like that. IN my area the rock is limestone... so when the dirt is made up of limestone rock chips.. I am sure there is lots of minerals especially lots of calcium in the soil and that is something ginseng needs to thrive.
Wow!!! Yep, I'd say it likes rocks!!!! Well, I have to also say that there is no reason I can see for it not to grow on my land. Like I said, I have found just about all of the so called companion plants, plenty of rattlesnake fern and black cohosh, etc. Unless there could be something in the soil that ginseng cannot stand, but the other plants can it should go. Thanks for the posts. I will post updates if and when I find some or what I planted does decide to go ahead and try to grow. I am hopeful that somebody in the past just dug it all out.
Maiden Hair Fern is one of the best companion plants in my opinion.
This picture shows some MHF, and just up the hill to the left there are a couple of big old ginseng plants growing.
I saw the MHF, and went up that steep hill to check out the location and was well rewarded.
If you have a large are that you can plant and are just getting started... I would recommend this.
Get you some good stratified seed, and plant it in the fall (october-november)... in small test plots (4'x4' for example) and space those out all over your proposed planting area. If you have a acre of land that looks like it might work, then you might do 10 of those test plots that first year. Spread them out, and mark them good (something you can positively find them by) the next spring or early summer.
From my experience good stratified seed will sprout and make a 3 leafer just about anywhere you plant it... but it will be around year 3 when you will know if that spot is going to produce. If by year 3 you have some nice 2 prongs and perhaps a few 3 prongs... and especially if some of those are starting to produce berries in year 3, 4, 5... then you know that spot has been proven.
I started off planting large beds 5'x50' or longer... and I planted those all over my planting area.
Some have done well, and some have not done well at all. It was year 3 or so before I knew for sure which areas were going to do well.
I would have been better off if I had just planted small 4x4 spots all over my place to find out those good locations.
Unfortunately I planted several 5x50 beds in areas where they just have not done well. Some of those beds at 6 years old still had just a few small spindly 2 prongs in them.
I would have wasted a lot less seed if I had done the small test plots instead. Live and learn.
But on the good side, I also put in several 5x50 beds in locations where they have done well. I now have some nice 3 prongs in those areas that are producing berries that I am planting back in that same location where I am sure they will be successful.
Thanks for the tip...if the seeds I planted don't do anything I think I will have the soil professionally tested to see if there is something it either lacks or has too much of and go from there accordingly...I like the idea of test beds. I think, if it comes to that, I will also try to put up some sort of barrier to keep the animals out or at least slow down their access.
Is there any reason not to try or has anyone had any luck starting ginseng in a pot and transplanting the seedlings?????? I am going to guess that it probably don't work too good...I don't ever hear anyone talking about trying it.
The area where I have my cabin has been thru quite a drought in the last several years that just wont give it up...if I ever do get plants to come up I will try to at least manage a trip once a month to see that they get watered...or is it better to let them naturally go dormant????