"Ginseng must be grown in partial shade in open woodland or under lath
structures. The soil must be fairly light and well fertilized with
woods earth, rotted leaves or fine raw bonemeal, the bonemeal applied
at the rate of 1 pound to each square yard.. Seed is planted in Spring
as early as the soil can be worked. Seeds are placed 6 inches apart
each way in the permanent beds OR 2 by 6 inches in the seed beds.
Seedlings are transplanted to stand 6 to 8 inches apart when 2 years
old. The beds should at all times be kept free of weeds and grass and
the surface of the soil slightly stirred whenever it shows signs of
caking. A winter mulch is needed, applied when freeezing weather begins
and removed in early spring. The roots do not reach marketable size
until the fifth or sixth year. Protect from mice and other rodents."
Two books which have reliable info and which may be out of print but would probably be in your public library are:
- The Herb Book by John Lust. Benidict Lust Publications in hard
cover and Bantam Books in paperback . My copy is 1975 , but I believe
later printings are still available.
- e other one is THE HERBALIST by Joseph E.Meyer.
"The roots do not reach marketable size until about the fifth or
sixth year, when they are dug carefully washed or shaken free from all
the adhering soil. The trade accepts only whole roots; hence they must
be dried in that form. This is best done in a well ventilated room
heated to about 90 degrees F. Considerable time is required to cure the
larger roots properly, (another source says up to a month) and much
care must be taken to prevent overheating and molding." (No indication
how to do this!!). When well cured the roots should be stored in a dry
airy place until ready for sale."