There are three types of ginseng growing methods, clones will be the fourth type of growing method.
Field grown: obvious. Woods grown: means where the ground has been worked as a minimum, up to a field grown under natural canopy. Wild Simulated: means seeds where scattered and left to grow as mother nature intended.
To tell the differents between a wild plant that has been transplanted and given fertilizers - The neck will be relatively the same size every year and then increase in diameter after the fertilizers. You should also be able to see robust growth on the root with less rings. On a lot of wild plants you will get off shoot roots from the neck, this is rare in any type of cultivated root.
Woods grown: by definition means with cultivation and fertilizers under a natural canopy. These have less root rings and have few root nodes,as compared to wildof the same age. Woods neck diameter is bigger and they have bigger scars. They are half way between wild and field cultivated. There is usually less dirt and or a different type of dirt less organic or fibrous more sandy.
I have seen and found large fat wild plants that have found the perfect soil and climate. The necks are all the same size, after the first few years of development and later in life they will develop double heads or triple even, depending on the growing conditions.
Guy, Thanks for the insightful knowledge on the differences. I am also using the size of neck scars to give an indication of wild vs. woodsgrown, but some people tell me it's due to more sun to the plant, and others think large distinctive nodes are great. Add to the fact that northern roots are usually larger, and have larger nodes (vs. ones in Ohio) makes it complicated for me. It's always my impression that roots from midwest have more offshoots than the eastern roots. BTW...What state are you from? What is root node?
Root nodes are them little balls on the roots at every bend, not to be mistaken for the nematodes that are bigger and every where, good sign of cultivation. I was told that them balls got bacteria thats good for the plant, a symbiotic thing. I am from Ontario Canada, in the eastern area.
Still to be sure whats what, buy from people you trust. Count them neck scares if alot are the same age they are more than likely some type of cultivated. It's not that hard to trust your self.
Guy, now I know why you were answering all my questions so patiently. You are a Canadian! Having lived in Buffalo and Detroit, I have grown to love Canada and Canadians a lot, but not the cold. I have a good friend living around your \"neck of the woods.\" Perhaps he can score me some ginseng in the fall...but I guess I'll have to eat it all on my trip there.
To me wild sang is a berry that was planted in the mountians and uncultevated,,,i mean there was just a little raking back of the leaves and the seed droped recovered and left just like that,,,no tilling the ground etc.................that is wild as it gets.......