Ok, so i'm buying seng seed and rootlet this year, but i'm wanting to grow it in raised beds or something similar with slat walls and top for shade. I would be thrilled with suggestions or ideas regarding the beds and the soil. also need some thoughts on drainage etc. I have dug seng for years, but would like to get a good start with a garden. Any ideas etc. would be a big help and much appreciated!
If you grow seng from seed in tilled soil the roots will grow and look more like carrot roots - straight and slick. Roots like that (cultivated ginseng) sells for a fraction of the price of wild seng. Out in a open (sunny) garden area you would also have to provide artificial shade.
The soil would need to be rich in calcium. Per Scotts book seng does best in soil where the calcium level is up in the 4000-5000 lbs per acre range. If you have soil that is high in calcium & other minerals ginseng may grow just fine there. If not you may have to supplement the calcium by adding something like gypsum, or rock chips or both to the soil.
You might want to check out the post above (by me) on establishing a ginseng seed producing bed.
Instead of working up a ginseng bed out in a sunny garden area - if you have a spot on the north or north/east side of your house where you could put a bed in that should work fairly well. Just observe the shade conditions around your home. You may have a location there that gets a few hours of morning sun but then is shaded by the house the rest of the day. In a spot like that you may not even need to put up any artificial shade.
On the north side of my house I have a area like that. It is that side of the house where the snow melts last.
I think I will put me in a little bed there and just see if I can grow some seng there. You could put in a couple of those nice japanese lace leaf maples and then under them plant some ginseng (could transplant some wild roots in and plant some seed, perhaps some other wild stuff like maidenhair fern, blood root, cohosh, star-root (false unicorn) and have your own little wild plant spot growing there.
It would probably be best to bring in some woods top soil, and get some of that rocky soil (like in my post above) and you could also mulch it with hard maple leaves, poplar leaves (which are good sources of calcium).
suhweet! thanks man! i have a few spots that might work... i have a small well drained 'swath' in my back yard that has some paw paws , but no other plants, i will probably take your advice and plant some other neighbor plants back there and give it a shot. i may have to sprinkle some calcium and lime back there, but that wouldnt be a problem at all. i will have to check the shade situation, as the paw paws are on the NE side of the house, but dont provide much cover. Thanks for the suggestions! i cant wait to get some root goin!
I Know about your excitement. \"I can't wait to get some root goin\"
I walk through the woods every day chcking out my seng patches. From the Spring when they just start poking through the soil until they turn yellow and wilt in the eary fall. They are a JOY to watch grow!
And how so many grow differently than the rest.
Also the protecting them from the many slugs we have in the spring that would wipe them out if action was not taken.
I'm sure you will have great joy in watching them grow from year to year!
thanks man! yeah, i love an ongoing project. and i especially love plant related projects, so this should be right up my alley! i have hunted seng ever since i was little, but have never grown it. should be interesting!