I had a few hundred seed left from the last pound I bought and planted a nice little spot yesterday morning and made a 2 part video (posted to youtube - links below).
Man - yesterday sure was a nice day here in Middle TN. It started out in the low 40's and was bright and sunny all day and by mid afternoon we hit the low 70's - sure felt like spring !
That little place I planted - just up the hollow about 20 yards in the same location (just where the hillside meets the hollow bottom) there are 12-14 wild seng plants and I harvested 2 nice 3 prongs from that patch last year. This is the same hollow that I have done the large majority of my planting in this fall/winter (a bit over 3 lbs seed planted now).
Going to order anotehr pound soon and get some more seed planted. Will probably keep at that until late Feb (as long as the seed I am buying continues to look good.) This last batch I bought from wildgrown.com and it looked great. I could not really tell any difference in it and the seed that I purchased late October.
Anyway - I looked all over youtube and could not find anyone showing how to plant gingeng using wild-simulated methods so I made a 2 part video and posted it showing how I plant with my double rake & scatter method.
They uploaded yesterday evening and this moring one has 11 views already. Perhaps some folks out there will get interested and start planting seng and these video's will help a bit.
TNhunter, Classicfur, Hillhopper and others.
Do you think you will need to rake off any leaves prior to the seeds coming up this spring? I have read that it is good to rake off some of the leaves as long as the moisture is there in the ground. Some even advocate fluffing up the leaves with a rake that have been matted down by snow and rain prior to the seeds sprouting. Both will allow the seedlings to make their way through the leaf layers.
Also I know Classicfur is going to spray with \"Plant Helper\" as well as I am. Anybody else going to spray with a natural product to help ward off disease? If so what are you planning on using.
Because of the heavy snow pack where I live(9+ feet of snow) I usually put about 4-5\" of leaves on all the beds before winter snow to protect from frost heaves. In spring I usually rake off the leaves so there is about an inch left covering them( only on newly planted, 1 and 2 yr old beds). The beds with older roots, I do not remove any of the leaves. The older plants seem to come up fine through the heavier mulch.
The 1 and 2 yr old beds, I planned to rake all the leaves off and spray Trichoderma Plant Helper on the soil, then rake back a 1 inch covering of leaves.
If the leaves are matted against the ground, it is best to fluff them up so the young plants can find their way through more easily. For seedlings this is very important!
The videos are very well done.
Now regarding the use of gypsum, I'm thinking that it's not necessary if you are already using bone meal. I understand you want to add some calcium. However, bone meal should have plenty of calcium since it comes from bones. While it's generally not listed because people use it mostly for phosphate, one of the packages I have lists 15% phosphate and 14% calcium. Since calcium is considered a micro nutrient, if you supply enough bone meal for phosphate, it should contain enough calcium. I understand gypsum is cheap though.
What do people think?
Yep - I do understand that bonemeal includes calcium and adding both gypsum and bone meal is sort of double doing the calcium.
That hollow that I am planting - the soil test showed 1472 pounds per acre on calcium (they flagged that as Satisfactory), and 11 pounds per acre on phosphorus (they flagged that as Low).
The main reason I am also using bonemeal is to boost the phosphorus.
The bonemeal is costing me 12.00 per 20 lb bag.
The gypsum is costing me 6.25 per 40 lb bag.
If my phosphorus levels were up in the Satisfactory range I would only be using the gypsum - much more cost effective way to add the calcium.
I would also like to raise the calcium levels up in the 3000-4000 pounds per acre range if possible. I will do a another soil test this spring to see if I need to make adjustments to what I am applying.
It would be ideal to have a place to grow where the soil was already mineral rich and no need to add anything. Unfortunately I do not have that here on my place.
From the for what its worth department. I have been reading a lot about Morel Mushrooms and other mushrooms liking and growing well in acidic soils. I have always kind of known this but never gave much thought to it. So with that said all of us woodsmen that hunt mushrooms might want to consider remembering our mushroom spots for potential future ginseng planting bed spots knowing that ginseng likes acidic soil as well.