This subject may have been covered and if it has I appoligize. In my seed beds where I do not plan on harvesting any sang for profit would it be ok to add chicken or rabbit waste? If so would assume that it should be done in the winter months or after the tops have died back to lower the possiblity of burning them. Also, is gypsum in the form of dry wall sheeting ok to use? Thanks, Hunter
I would not add any manure to my beds. Yes gypsum in the drywall is great if you need calcium in your bed. If I were to add manure I would mix it in with leaves and compost it in a separate pile or compost bin. Then once the compost is broken down I would top dress the beds in the winter with the composted material.
Fresh, non-composted manure will generally have a higher N content than composted manure. However, the use of composted manure will contribute more to the organic matter content of the soil. Fresh manure is high in soluble forms of N, which can lead to salt build-up and leaching losses if over applied. Fresh manure may contain high amounts of viable weed seeds, which can lead to weed problems.
If I was going to use manure at all, it would be composted and aged. For example if you could mix together maple leaves and some of your chicken/rabit manure, and perhaps some gypsum and let it compost for several months, turning it to make sure it cooked down good (killed the seeds) and breaking down the high N in the manure, then you should have a nice mix to try out as a top dressing for your seed bed.
The main concerns with using manure at all would be the N content and seeds in the manure which will germinate if not composted.
Too much N on ginseng would make the tops/leaves grow more than normal, and could lead to more foliage type disease issues.
Hunter, I am no expert on this topic at all, but from what I've read I agree with Latt & TN on this. Especially TN's concern about raising the nitrogen content too much. I also wanted to add that when I was a child my dad raised rabbits for a while by the hundreds. From those days I believe I remember reading that rabbit manure had lower nitrogen content than almost any other manures. I am not 100% sure about this, but think I remember this from way back then (30 years ago). It is something you could check into if you are wanting to pursue this.
I was thinking on this subject and wondered if a grower only wanted a seed producing bed of mature plants in the future if he could fertilze and grow a larger healthier more seed producing plant. Do you guys think this is how the big farms rasie their seed bearing plants?