The season has progressed really quickly here in the Southeast and lots of 2 Prongs and 3 Prongs are pushing through the leaf litter. I made my first fungicide spray yesterday and will probably make another in a few days. This is just my attempt to knock down diseases at the critical times that newly emerging plants are exposing their tops to whatever might have carried over through the winter. This fungicide is systemic and can kill whatever it touches, but also moves through the tissue to protect the plant for a few weeks to come. After about 3 of these sprays I want to switch over to natural fungicide sprays and only use the first product when I feel like a bit more protection might be needed. I am going by a commercial peach spray schedule to know when certain disese outbreaks will occur. I will follow this schedule for 1 season and give results as the season moves along. Many of you will not want to do any spraying and I can understand if you take that route. This will just give a comparison that some may want to use later on if they are not getting the results they expect by growing completely wild. If it turns out to be a dry season, very little spraying will be needed. I also want to put down a spray after the leaves have fallen and I think this will go a long way in getting rid of many diseases for the next season.
Good luck to everyone as the new season begins.
Interesting Hugh and g/l with that I am following sevral post here by our friends and watching the results.
I will share something that I decided to do the 3rd season back now the first time that I decided to plant stratified seed.
I was not and still am not confident in stratified seed that you purchase from the many dealers of seeds etc.To many complications hat I have read about by the more exsperienced planters in this forum,books etc.
So to either prove my doubght wrong to myself or to establish what I think I am runing a test,with all hope that my thought is wrong because if it is,I will plant thousands and thousands of seeds throughout the Mountians in many places that is my hope in this project/test etc.
I planted stratified seed and gave them no help neither am I going to help them so that they grow as if they where completly wild seed droped from a plant there in the woods.
I had also gathered wild seed from the area by harvesting roots and replanting them in the area where I wanted the seed to make it legal in Ky we are not supposed to take the seed far from the natural plants we harvest so I figured out another way,that also is what prompted me to start selling seedbed roots on my website.I had done this sevral years back so that I could establish this test with the stratified seed.
So when everything was in place the 3rd season back I started this and planted from both the purchased stratified and the wild seed.
As exspected the stratified seed came up the very next season,the wild seed did not,but are poking up this season.As of now it is to early to tell but what I am trying to do is see if the stratified seed will grow wild without help,without fighting off disease etc.
In all the years that I have ginsenged I have constanlty added wild seed to areas that where near ginseng but that where not growing and have saw that if you put the seed there then the ginseng will grow.The most likely reasons that it wasent growing there before was that it was over harvested in time past,or it just never was there and I have saw very good things come from doing this,sevral areas are with harvestable plants now,but I will not harvest them at this time they are for Caleb and Bill.
If the stratified seed will do as the wild seed then I will be glad,but if not then I am not going to ever plant any more,to me I would never be able to treat and keep up with the many many seeds that I would want to put out,throughout the Mountians,so if they can do well here on there own then in about 3 more years when the 1st seeds are 5 years old I will plant many,but if they can not then I will never plant any more.And I have enough planted now that I will not buy any more seed untill I know.
The reason that if they can not grow well on there own in the wild then they may actualy damage the wild crop instead of helping it ( that is a personal opinion in my own mind )and that would be a total waste of time and would break my heart.I want badly to prove myself wrong actualy I am not at all sure what the outcome will be,but we will see if the Lord will.
I feel that with the soil that I am blessed to have in my area and the way that the ginseng so loves this soil that if any hope of this seed taking off and doing well is of any reality that it will do so in this soil and if so I will be very glad and hope that it does.I have sevral trial areas in the work.
If the stratified does not work then I will continue to harvest and transplant wild root and then add wild seed to areas where I believe that it will help,and that is helping the area alot,but in a very small amount compared to what being able to add the stratified to the same areas would help,seeing that I could multiply it by 100 times so to speak.
I admire what you are attempting to do and I look forward to hearing your results. I want to say a few things and it will give an idea of where I think many of our problems come from when trying to grow Wild Simulated Ginseng.
Until I started trying the Wild Simulated method I never heard of the problems that so many growers have. We just planted berries and it grew. I really believe many of the diseases we see attacking ginseng are already on the seed and as soon as it comes up the problems begin to show up. I know that some seed producers use the Clorox Dip, but sometimes I don't believe it completely cures the problem. Also, many of the diseases are in the soil or leaf litter and they touch the young plant as it emerges or grows. This is the reason that I am taking the approach that I have described. I think that many of the guys that grow Woods Grown will agree that killing off the disease that attacks the young ginseng before it comes up goes a long way to having a healthy crop. I think you will find very few, if any, large growers that do not spray at least a few times per season. I also think that a good dip in Captan, or Manzate, or Dithane, before planting will do wonders for a healthy new bed of plants.If a grower doesn't do anything more than spray the bed early in the season before any plants emerge, he will have taken much of the potential disease out of the picture.
We have talked about giving young plants two or three years of clean, disease free growth and letting them go after that. I believe we're going to see some growers trying this and maybe the newest generation starting to grow seng will have an easier time than some of us have had.
I understand what you are saying and I believe that you are right.After all we can only truely learn from experimenting our self or through what others that we know have learned through there experiments.Very interesting.Hey we still havent got together for that steak dinner,maybe soon we can
I think you are very wise starting your experiment with the stratified seed carefully.
I'm not going with a sprayer either. It would be impossible for me because of the way I have it strung out(some in very rough terrain). So if some dies it just has to die and the strong will survive.
It's a waste of time and money planting it too thickly. These ideas of making a lot of money in a short time is too far fetched. Most of it will surely die from disease.
I can take 5 or 6 lbs. of seed and plant an acre. planting sparingly.
Of course that's my opinion and my 16 years of experience in growing it wild.
I am pretty much of the same mind. I don't always get it done in time, but try to lay down a metalic copper spray(Kocide) prior to emergence to kill off anything that overwintered and might attack the new seedlings as they emerge. Even if I don't get it before they emerge, a little turquoize tint never hurt anybody 8)
I have always believed that the fungi we fight in our woodsgrown beds are the result of the pathogens being in the ground from the start. But, you are correct, in that the seed (if improperly handled) can certainly carry the fungi. I stopped using bleech on my rootlets a couple years back. I think there are times when the bleech actually kills the rootlets and they then start to decay, contaminating the rest of the lot. What I\"ve found though, is that nearly dry peat keeps the rootlets well, and seldom does it allow the spread of fungal disease. I might dig through and find a fuzzy rootlet, but those around it will be fine.
The same thing goes for seed. We have discovered that ginseng seed can be kept much drier than we had initially believed. For example, the seed I sold last year did not have a single grinner in the bunch. Yet, it was germination tested at 98%. I have kept about a half pound of stratified seed in an open plastic box in my basement over the winter at room temperature. I wet it now and again when I remember to do so. But, it gets VERY dry. I am keeping it not to plant, but to tinker with new seeder designs when I have the chance. I cut a few open the other day and found they look just like they did the day I got them last August. Not a grinner in the bunch and I found no dead or diseased seed. I suspect they just think it is still last fall. They still need another cold cycle to germinate. Likewise, I know that if you keep fresh seed in the freezer, then take them out a year later and warm them in the summer and plant them in the fall, they will come up like that years crop.
I know in Ontario, they spray Quadris as soon as they plant before laying straw. We can't use it here as its not labeled for Ginseng. But, I have used Bravo/Ridomil to help protect the seeds through the fall and into winter with seemingly ok results. If I ever get my time back, I\"ll have to set up experiments on stuff like this. It is an interesting issue for sure.
I think that is a good logical way to experiment with your issue. I know from my experience that I have no issues with wild sim being left to its own divices even though it comes from commercially raised seed. When I dug up some 4-6s the other fall, I was very impressed with the way they looked. I sprayed them the first two years, and nothing after that. They looked as wild as any I've seen.
I'll also tell you, that when I take the time to hand pick seed from the stuff I have growning in the woods and stratify them myself, they do remarkibly well. Not only do the seed look huge and grin excessively, but the plants themselves look really robust. I think it has to do with the acclimation to the area. This is another reason I think fall planting does so much better than spring planting.
I've had success buying and planting stratified seed and have been harvesting the seed from that for the past 5 years with decent success. Granted, my plantings have been somewhat limited (1# per year for a couple of years), but I now have more seed (when I am able to get it collected) that what I can plant and have found \"wild\" plants coming up from the seed I have not harvested. So, Billy, if you received your seed from a good source, I think you will see much success!
Another KY boy here... I'm on my third year, and doing pretty much the same, not treating the plants with anything. So far, I haven't seen anything that looked like disease, fingers crossed. Still too early to tell what sort of mortality I'm seeing the first year - definitely losing some, just don't know why, and they don't appear to be diseased, they just don't come back the next year. Part of my no treatment or cultivation is to get the maximum value for the wildest looking roots, and part of it is I just don't have that sort of time.
Haven't transplanted any wild roots, because they don't occur where I live (central KY), though my farm is near perfect - steep hills, hardwood trees, lots of bloodroot, trillium and jack growing there naturally, and the 2 and 3yo roots I've put out have, for the most part, done well. I'm no expert at sang, but I did grow up on a working farm. Every piece of land is a bit different, so a lot of successful farming of any sort is learning your particular land.
I honestly think that commercially produced seed hasn't seen any significant genetic variation to put it apart from wild seed, other than perhaps bringing disease along from overcrowding. A good washing will take care of that.
I'd love to get some wild seed and roots and see if anything is different. Finding them is the problem.
rootman - bacastle - kchacha - johno thanks for all of the information and thought i enjoy reading and learning from others exsperiences and also enjoy talking and telling about mine.
I will keep you all posted on this exsperiment.....
I'm going to bring this subject up again because of the weather situation that we have upon us now and what is approaching us. I mentioned in my earlier post that \"you may only want to use the fungicide sprays if you have severe weather situations or disease outbreaks\". We are having one heavy storm after another move through Kentucky into East Tn. and just about everyone in these areas have new plants coming up. I can almost guarantee you that if you don't protect these new plants some way you are going to lose 1/3rd -1/2 of your new beds. I'm not saying you have to use organic fungicides since there are new natural biological fungicides available. One or two sprays will do the job and you will be thanking your lucky stars down the road that you took the time and effort to help them out. I don't want to see any of you having to do all that work over again this Fall.