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Follow Harvest Stewardship and always comply with your State Ginseng Rules and Regulations when collecting wild ginseng roots.
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TOPIC: Question

Question 4 years 9 months ago #41978

Every year I order ginseng seed to plant as I wander the hills. Is it good as a Stewart or should I just plant the berries

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Question 4 years 9 months ago #41979


I think you are doing a good thing there...

I think at a minimum a digger should plant every red berry he can find while hunting seng. And should only harvest mature roots... leave all those small 3's and lesser seng to grow for another day.

Anyone that purchases seed to plant in addition to that -- I think deserves a BIG Thumbs UP !!


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Question 4 years 9 months ago #41980

I’ve been doing that for years and it really pays off. I’ve hunted several woods for 20 years and it seems like there is more ginseng there now than there was when I first started just because of planting seeds and doing what Tennessee said. Leave the young 3’s alone and plant all those red berries. Ive found that it’s also a good idea to only hit a woods every 3-4 years to give that sang time to get big. I would also give you a big thumbs up for carrying seeds in.

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Question 4 years 9 months ago #41983

Appreciate it. I haven't dug hardly no ginseng in a few years. Low price and alot of extra work. If price gets right I got 8-9 hundred big 3 and 4 prongers to dig. If not I'll cut tops opening day and I'll leave them for next year. I guess my idea is that seed comes from other areas. Will it be a different type or are they all the same

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Last Edit: by diggerAK. Reason: Forgot to finish

Question 4 years 9 months ago #41984


On your question... if it would be different or are they all the same...

I would say that depends on where you get your seed from.

I bought stratified seed for several years and planted it. My seed came from a state that was several hundred miles north of my location...
But my wild sim looks a lot like my local wild ginseng. It is really hard to tell them apart.

But now when I started my Seed producing bed, I put 40+ roots in that bed, and I purchased 5 roots from Billy Taylor (from the KY state, in the mountain area...). He lived in that county in the far south east of the KY state best I remember. His seng is Mountain seng.

Here were I live our elevations run from around 600' - 1100'. Hills and hollows, plenty, but no mountains.

His ginseng plants the berry stems were very long (initially)... I mean berry pods sticking up 4-8" above the leaves easily.

But my wild seng around here, most of it the berry pods have short stems, with the berry pods being down below leaf level.

I have had those Mountain roots in my seed bed since 2010, and have noticed over the years that those berry stems have slowly reduced in length. They are not nearly as tall now as they were initially.

I guess there is just something about Mountain soil, light, conditions... that produces those tall berry stems... and Monster roots too.


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Question 4 years 9 months ago #41992

I think a question I've pondered might fit in with this thread. when you sell your roots, do you have (or are suppose) to claim whether the roots are wild or from stratified seed?

If the answer is YES, then when planting stratified seed, it's probably best to keep it separate from the wild seng and their berries?

In my case where I bought the property almost two years ago, I'm about 99% sure the seng is wild but I have no way of knowing for sure. Or do I?

Also, will buyers request to see your permit when they buy your seng. The local buyer here owns a salvage yard and when I take aluminum cans there to recycle, am required to give them my driver's license which they record, as well as my license plate #, type of vehicle, height, underwear size, mother's middle name, etc...

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Question 4 years 9 months ago #41993

I can not tell the difference between my seeds and wild. Who's to say most ginseng wasn't planted by someone else. Any how I let the buyer look and give me a price on his professional opinion,cause I don't know the difference myself and I only plant where I have found some to know that the soil is good

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Cutting tops 4 years 9 months ago #41994

I assume you cut the tops to keep others from harvesting the smaller plants. This does not effect the plants?

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Question 4 years 8 months ago #41995

On cutting the tops...

Deer browse seng all year, starting in the spring, thru fall... in years when it is very dry they seem to hit the seng a lot harder.

A top from a mature root, sometimes they will skip a year or two and not even send up a top. Not sure why they do that but it is a fact, it happens.

On roots that are quite young... 2-3 years old, losing the top early in the spring, would be more serious (set back) than it would be for a mature root. The top is what is used to build up that root, store energy in it, etc...

If you cut the top off a very young seng plant (2-3) years old... 2-3 years in a row (early in the spring, april, may)... it may just expire and not have the root strength to send up a top the next year.

If you waited until August, September to cut that top off, the root should be just fine.

On mature roots, it should not be a problem (or set back at all for the plant/root) to remove the top as long as you want until July/August to do that.

When i first started planting stratified seed, I had some first year 3 leafers where the top died back late June, and when I checked those beds the next spring, the majority of those came back again. My seng is up in early April normally... so with a little more than 2 months (around 70 days) of growth, the top was able to store enough energy in those tiny new roots, so that is sent up a top the next year.


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Question 4 years 8 months ago #42009

I have not cut any tops off at this point. This is my first summer since discovering my three colonies in May and want to observe them as much as possible.

I've planted maybe 25 berries from those plants so far and have a few that are getting close. Two of my colonies are pretty close to my house and I feel as though they are safe from poachers. The other colony is a bit more accessible from adjacent properties so I'm a bit more diligent with that one. I've got several game-cams near it and visit it regularly.

I've got plants there still with berries and am waiting for them to get redder. Interestingly, I have a three-pronger with a nice berry cluster (all green at the moment) and all the leaves have been eaten off by deer or something.

With this colony, I'll remove tops before I go to AZ for a week in Sep. That's my plan at the moment.

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