Who hunts for wild Ginseng?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by cabe, Aug 1, 2005.

  1. cabe

    cabe Well-Known Member

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    The first time I ever went looking for "Sang",I went with my Gramps, and I had to carry a Ginseng plant with me almost all day until I could spot it on my own.I have never missed a year getting out and hunting that herb, and really like to be out that time of year. Used to I always made enough money doing it to buy my Georgia hunting- out of state liscense-, but it was not just that.It was following a tradition taught to me, I grow some also just for emergencies like a new gun or something. :rock: Let me hear your favorite Ginseng hunting story, and even if you only are a beginner maybe you will come away with some "Sang skills".Marty.
     
  2. palani

    palani Well-Known Member

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    I own 60 acres of woods and had a friend who hunts ginseng in it around September of last year. Turns out there is wild ginseng growing all over the property.

    I haven't harvested any yet. We just dug up a couple of plants and replaced them back in the ground. One thing that did strike me as different from morel hunting is when you find a mushroom you pick it and when you locate wild genseng you pinch off the stem so no one else can find it.

    In this state they seem to think a license is required to pick it and another license is needed to grow it. How bout your area?
     

  3. patarini

    patarini Well-Known Member

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    I grow it and hunt it wild -- just moved to tn so will be all new hunt for me! My planted stuff is just starting to turn the berries red, so will be time soon to go hunting again!
     
  4. .Marie.

    .Marie. Registered Human

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    I have some growing under a butternut tree in my yard. I was taught when I was very young how to spot it. Unfortunately, it has been hunted and dug almost to the point of being non-existent here where I live (central Ohio). I see it once in a while when I am out hiking trails down in southeastern Ohio.
    I'd like to grow it on a scale large enough to provide some extra income, but I don't have enough shade on my property.
    My father used to get as much as 300 dollars a pound for the dried roots.
     
  5. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    Yup I hunt it. I have a lot of it on the place. I try to keep some around to sell when I need some quick cash. I have people who pay obscene amounts of money for the dried stuff. I've considered possibly trying to raise the stuff but I have no clue as to the legalities or even how to successfully cultivate it.
     
  6. Rick

    Rick Well-Known Member Supporter

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    We have had it pointed out to us by the the timbering crew that cruised our property. Learning how to spot it is naturally one of our goals.

    Palani: Do you pinch all of the leaves (stems)?

    Patarini: Do you wait til the berries turn red to help distinguish the plant from others, or is it just the best time ti transplant?

    Are any part of the plant usable besides the root?

    Rick
     
  7. Alice In TX/MO

    Alice In TX/MO More dharma, less drama. Supporter

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    I don't know how to spot it, but I'd like to learn. I've got some acreage in Southern Missouri that may have native ginseng. I just don't know what to look for and how to tell it from Virginia creeper, etc.
     
  8. palani

    palani Well-Known Member

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    Rick

    Just pinch off the cluster of five leaves. Do this after the berry has dropped off and the leaves have turned yellow. It is not supposed to hurt the plant.

    A Korean gentleman that I used to work with pointed out to me that a 300 year old plant in Korea is worth $50,000. Let me know if you find one of these and I will be available to help harvest ... :)

    I guess a lot of people are cultivating these now and the price of the cultivated stuff is nowhere near the wild. However I understand the berries may be harvested 2-3 years after you plant to provide some income. The root is harvested at 5 years.
     
  9. Whitepine

    Whitepine Member

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    You hit the hot button for me on the sang thang. Its an obsession of mine. Can,t wait i have watched my patch all year grow. It,s getting close ta digging time. I always wait for the berries ta ripein before digging. A lot of them have dug it starting in spring. Ya can,t get them ta understand that they are throwing away the future of digging it. The season in ky. starts aug. 15 and 3 prong or better. Rasied sang brings about 60 - 70 dollars a pound. The wild around 250 - 300. Looks like a good year for it.
     
  10. cc-rider

    cc-rider Baroness of TisaWee Farm Supporter

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    The 112 acre woods that my friend just bought in SE Ohio seems to have TONS of this stuff growing.... or maybe it all looks the same to me! I'll have to check it out again now that I know what I'm looking for!

    When do the berries start to ripen in SE Ohio?
     
  11. Merrique

    Merrique Well-Known Member

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    My Dad taught us to hunt 'sang when we were kids, we have been all over southern West Virginia :) As a kid, we use to dig and dry 'sang to have money for the county fair every fall. some of my favorite memories are of hunting 'sang. Unfortunately, alot of people in my area (se Ohio) dig up all the sang, regardless of the size. I was taught to replant the berries and to always leave the smaller ones alone. I would also like to grow some of my own, have a nice wooded hillside that would be perfect.
     
  12. cabe

    cabe Well-Known Member

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    Man you all gave me just what I needed, a Ginseng fix.I am missing hunting it , and it will not be too long before the season begins here. I really like all the knowledge -and you are all spot on about the "whens and when nots to dig ". It is great that you all practice sustainable wild digging practices.The very best way I think for insuring the future of our plant is to also plant it in wild patches on your own land.I just harvest the berries each year from my patch, and then with a sharp stick I make holes in choice spots than place a fresh berry in each hole . I do not fertilize or help the plants in any way, this will bring best prices as this slows down growth and ring patterns on roots will be tight.The oldest plant I ever dug was 72 years old. It was only a 3 prong growing next to a rotten log, but when I moved the log to dig this plant I noticed a 2ft. long white stem running away from the green top.I followed this with my hand and came to a root top that was as big around as a large carrot.The root dried to .25 lb. :happy: I imagine it was about 1lb. or close green. I was young and when I look back on it , I wish I had taken pictures and planted that thing in my woods.Lets keep up the input , you all will never know how much this is helping me survive until the season opens here.Marty.