I have no doubt that turkeys, deer, and other critters, eat seng berries and poop them out.
I expect a berry that was put out like that in a pile of poop would have that 1 in 8 chance of germinating (if it happened to be pooped out in an ideal seng growing location). That would be a 12.5% chance of germinating (but also a) 87.5% chance of not germinating.
So if they were pooped out in a ideal ginseng growing location (say right near the mother plant) then out of 100 berries planted that way, 12 or 13 might actually sprout and make it.
But what if those berries got pooped out on a west or south facing hillside, in the middle of a black top road, on top of a dry ridge, or in a corn field... You know if you look at where ginseng will actually grow and do well, that is only a very small % of the woodland floor area. Considering all of the possible bad locations that a turkey/deer or other critter could poop those berries/seeds out... that 12.5% chance of germinating.. goes way down - I would say more like 1-2% chance of making it.
So 100 berries planted like that, only 1 or 2 make it.
If 60% of green berries planted (in a known good location, near the mother plant) after Sept 1, do germinate (and I expect that is about right) and planting them gives them a 87.5% chance of making it...
You start with 100 berries, and 60% of that would be 60, then 87.5% of that is 52.5
So 100 green berries planted in a known good location (near the mother plant after Sept 1)... 52 of them make it.
Early in the season you often find seng with a mix of red and green berries... in a case like that a man has to make the call on dig it now or wait and dig it later.. When I make the call to dig it now, I always plant the green berries that are filled out, just like I do the red ones.
i to have noticed peoplr doin this. as a matter of fact few weeks ago i went ti a spot and some of the first sang i found hhad ben done this way. none of the plants had berries and as i proceeded up the hill i even found some yellow sang like this. but all berrirs had ben removed already.i was beginning to get frustrated thinking i was to late to the spot and was not going to find anything that was not already dug. my luck changed when i found a nice patch of four prongs probably six of them with atleast ounce roots on them all with in fifty yards of a couple that had already ben dug and stood back up. i ended up with almost a pound green in that spot but still not sure why the previous guy done this.
This is a prime example of u can't dig it all! The best sengers will tell u the same thing Tn. I think i'm a great digger but u can still go behind me and find 1 or 2 that i've missed. As far as sticking the plant back after u dig them the berries will ripen and fall off, but still better off planting the green ones that are plump.
Thanks for posting this information and link! As some of you know, I have tried this but so far, I have been unable to determine the results. It seems that the necks with buds and tops still attached that I replanted in 2012, either completely rotted out, were eaten by rodents or have gone into dormancy as I was unable to find any of the one's I planted. I am hoping that next year, I will see a result of using this method!
For those that have Ginseng beds where the plants and their' roots can be monitored for progress, I wonder if someone would be willing to try another experiment??!! What if a person separated a portion of the neck (containing a bud) from a Ginseng root and planted it but also re-planted the root which also still has a portion of the root attached to see what the results would be. If both pieces from one root eventually grew new tops (next year or the year after) and if the especially the neck, re-grew a root, this would be fantastic! This might be somewhat of a controversial method to propagate the species but if it worked, one could see good results in their' Ginseng crops within the next 10 to 15 years without ever having to plant a lot of extra seeds.
What do you think about this and is anyone willing to try it? Someone that has a Ginseng bed and knows where every plant is within the bed, could actually try this now and report the results over the next 2 to 3 years.
When I had seng stolen last year there were separate fences on groups in the woods. One fence was down, and a wilted plant was evident on the spot. I pulled it up and there was no root on it, I figured it was put back as to look like the root was still there. This year when walking around the area, I noticed a fairly large plant growing there. I carefully excavated the area, and found a long neck, probably three to four inches long attached to the plant, and no root. I put it back in the ground, we will see what it turns out to be. I would say 35 to 40 years worth of stem left.