When I first started researching hunting ginseng one of the first reads stated that he wouldn't waste his time on southern or western slopes. So when I am checking maps and areas I have been concentrating my search areas on these types of slopes. Saturday I was forced around this bowl and in the head of the bowl I believed it to be facing northwest I found a pretty good patch that got better and better as I climbed the very steep hillside. So this morning I was looking at a satelite map and it is more west than north. So my question is how do you guys determine which slopes to search. I have this really deep bowl facing west/southwest looks like mostly poplar, and beech it raises from about 500' to 1400' and it's always nice and cool when I am driving by, it is close to where I have been digging. I was just wondering if you guys think it would be worth my while to check out this spot. I would say it will take me 3 hours to really get in there and give it a thorough inspection. I hope I am not boring you guys with these basic questions I would rather be looking in the best possible locations as my time to get out is limited to evenings after work and Saturdays, I have Church on Sundays. Again I appreciate your help.
If the canopy is right all slopes are game. Most seng I found at one time was on a south facing slope with some huge poplars and medium sized Hickorys, Yellow Buckeye, and Variation of Maples to layer the canopy perfectly.
I think it depends on how far north or south you are. For example New York / Maine, vs Tennessee / Alabama.
Down here in southern middle TN, you just will not find it on hillsides that get too much towards the west or south.
North facing hillsides are best... and between due north and North East are Ok (anywhere from due north to north east) but on the average slope, when you get too far towards the east closer to due east it just will not grow (with one exception) which is very steep hillsides like bluffs that face due east.
Once the hill side starts turning a little south or west... you are just walking and not going to find any seng.
I am sure that applies to Alabama (even more than TN), and probably more so in west TN than in Middle TN.
Mountains may make a difference... keep in mind I don't have mountains here in Middle TN, just hills and hollows.
I think there is a point as you get in the more southern states where the north to north east thing absolutely does apply.
Not sure exactly where that is, but it is very true for my location.
Down here west and south facing hillsides are just TOO hot for seng. Most other companion plants and any soft green plants just do not exist on south or west hillsides either. Too hot for them too.
Thanks guys for your input, by the way I am in central West Virginia. Pretty steep hills, deep hollows that are pretty dark and cool so I am going to give this one location a try that is mostly west facing but is directly above a small stream/river. I will let you all know how it turns out. Again I really appreciate how you all are so helpful and have accepted me into this forum.
I search every slope here and find it. All depends upon the overhead coverage. BUT you'll even find old ginseng on a south facing slope that's been nearly or entirely clear cut if the other underbrush is tall enough. I've dug it in a open raven where everything was clear cut to make a pond and then nothing done for about 12years. Driving back into the woods just off this I spot a big old 4 sticking up. We found around another 100+ 3&4's in that future open lake bed grown up in weeds & briars, Its now a lake but the woods all around it still produce good. The same property we dug a OLD 3 pronger 1' in from the edge directly in the gravel road put in 15 years earlier ( took forever to dig it out of the gravel as multiple layers of gravel had been put down through the years). Neck ended up being about 4\" long and it had a nice bulby root to start 1 1/2\" thick then went to being about 1/4\" thick for the rest of its length from being compressed while growing the later years of its life. With experience though you'll easily be able to judge the Normal better areas to hunt based upon lighting , trees and underbrush coverage and discover that all slopes hold it. My experience is limited to Indiana now & some Kentucky several years back though.
Hmm, its different with my experiences...I always find alot of nice patches in pines.but the only other trees in the pines are poplar, if its anything else I dont find near as much..my latest hunt in pines I dug 17 ounces..which It may be different from state to state