(08/22/2013)
By Cory Boothe
Coryboothe@hotmail.com

One of the first hunting seasons in West Virginia comes in September 1st. However, a hunter doesn't need a gun or bow for this season. All one needs is a hoe, a bread bag, and a good pair of walking boots. Ginseng season opens September 1st every year and runs until November 30th each year.

Ginseng is prized for its healing qualities. It is believed to remove fatigue and prolong life. It is often used in a tea or even chewed. Ginseng's benefits have been known for hundreds of years.

Ginseng has prongs and berries. A ginseng must have three prongs in order to be legal. It is a general rule that a three-prong ginseng will be five years or older and mature with a root from two to six inches. It is law that when the root is harvested the berries must be planted near where the root was taken.

Last year's average price for ginseng was over $400 a pound. The West Virginia Division of Forestry suggest that it takes over 300 plants to make a pound of ginseng. Last year, 8 pounds of ginseng was harvested in Calhoun County. Mingo County lead the state with 556 pounds of seng harvested last year. Calhoun's harvest record was back in 1983 with 216 pounds of seng harvested. Records are kept back to 1978 and the single season record goes to Logan County in 1984 with a total of 3,903 pounds of seng in a single year.

Senging is a great way to be outdoors and scout for the upcoming deer season while making some cash. Being in the woods early allows the senger to check out mast conditions before season openers. One cannot place a monetary value on being in the woods.


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