Before you go to the woods, make sure you fully understand all the rules of ginseng.
Right now in Indiana, and most of the Midwest to the eastern United States, ginseng harvesting seasons are opening up. However, before you head to the woods looking for this green gold, make sure you know all the rules of ginseng before you go.
If you don’t, you could be looking at some serious legal trouble.
As you heard in the video clip, ginseng is going for $400 per pound. If you are like me, that is probably about all you heard! Also, if you are like me, that figure probably makes you want to grab a shovel and head to the woods.
For a list of rules of ginseng hunting to live by, here are 10 quick hits as taken directly from the pages of the Indiana DNR:
- It is ILLEGAL to harvest wild ginseng out of season. A Class A misdemeanor.
- To harvest LEGALLY, a ginseng plant must have: at least 3 prongs and a flowering or fruiting stalk, or at least 4 internodes on the rhizome. To harvest plants not meeting these criteria is a Class B infraction. 3:
- It is REQUIRED that mature fruits and any seeds on the harvested ginseng be planted in the vicinity where the plant was dug and in a manner that encourages germination.
- 4: It is REQUIRED that the entire stalk and leaves be retained with the plant until it is taken to the harvester’s residence or place of business, unless the root has at least 4 internodes on the rhizome.
- It is ILLEGAL to sell or remove mature fruits and seeds from the vicinity where the ginseng was taken.
- It is ILLEGAL to buy, sell, or possess any ginseng out of season without written authorization from the Department of Natural Resources, Division of Law Enforcement. A Class B misdemeanor.
- It is ILLEGAL to buy uncertified ginseng for resale without an Indiana Ginseng Dealer’s License. A Class B misdemeanor.
- ONLY certified ginseng can be sold to a buyer in another state. To export uncertified ginseng is a Class A misdemeanor.
- HARVEST ginseng only where it is permitted—digging on State property is not allowed; digging on private property without permission is theft; digging on other properties may require a permit.
- Anyone violating these rules will be prosecuted.
Of course, be sure to check the rules of your state, first. That goes without saying.