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					American Ginseng

Word Count:
301

Summary:
American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius, L.) is a perennial herb and grows
wild in deciduous forests of the eastern United States. American ginseng
is an erect plant that reaches a height of 0.3 to 0.7 meters and has
fusiform roots, greenish-white flowers and red berries. The roots and
rhizomes are often branched or forked, and they bring a premium price if
they resemble a human form. Wild ginseng once thrived along most of the
nation's eastern seaboard, from Maine to Alabama and west to Michigan,
Wisconsin and Minnesota. American ginseng, (panax quinquefolium) was at
one time plentiful in all mountainous regions of the United States.
However, it was over-harvested in the mid-1970s, and was subsequently
defined as an endangered species. Now, only licensed ginseng harvesters
are allowed to dig for the wild ginseng root.


Keywords:
Ginseng, Growing Ginseng, Ginseng Tea, American Ginseng


Article Body:
American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius, L.) is a perennial herb and grows
wild in deciduous forests of the eastern United States. American ginseng
is an erect plant that reaches a height of 0.3 to 0.7 meters and has
fusiform roots, greenish-white flowers and red berries. The roots and
rhizomes are often branched or forked, and they bring a premium price if
they resemble a human form. Wild ginseng once thrived along most of the
nation's eastern seaboard, from Maine to Alabama and west to Michigan,
Wisconsin and Minnesota. American ginseng, (panax quinquefolium) was at
one time plentiful in all mountainous regions of the United States.
However, it was over-harvested in the mid-1970s, and was subsequently
defined as an endangered species. Now, only licensed ginseng harvesters
are allowed to dig for the wild ginseng root.

Ginseng was one of the earliest marketable herbs harvested in the United
States. Wild ginseng was one of Minnesota's first major exports. In 1860,
more than 120 tons of dried ginseng roots were shipped from the Minnesota
to China. American ginseng is similar to Asian ginseng, Panax ginseng, L.
that grows wild in Northern Manchuria and has been harvested there for
thousands of years. Currently, 18 states issue licenses to export it. In
Wisconsin and several other states where ginseng is cultivated, a permit
is not required to export artificially propagated ginseng.

American ginseng is also commonly cultivated. It is relatively easy to
grow. The root takes approximately 5 years to reach harvesting maturity.
American ginseng plants are generally started from seeds. Seedlings or
roots for transplanting are available commercially but used infrequently.
Seeds are planted in the fall and germinate in the spring.
American Ginseng is not a drug and should not be taken as such. The Food
and Drug Administration (FDA) has classified it as a “generally
recognized safe food” (GRAS).

				
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