Non Timber Forest Products
  Feb 25, 2004 18:26 PST 

The management of the forest overstory to incorporate NTFP's as a
complementary objective in the understory is a relatively new science.

In West Virginia, we have global markets for many of our wild medicinal

Several of our WV medicinals also grow in New England and they are usually
quite rare.

Some local root buyers have published want lists that can fill both sides of
a letter sized sheet with two columns on each side. The list will include
everything from blackberry roots and log moss to slippery elm and cherry bark.

A couple of current examples:
ginseng                                $325-$450/pound
Wild simulated ginseng          $400/pound
wild Goldenseal roots             $15-$20/pound
Cultivated Goldenseal            $25/pound
Goldenseal tops                     $10/pound
Log moss                              $1/pound
Black Cohosh                        $4/pound

A fully stocked acre of wild Goldenseal can be worth between $25,000 and

Black Cohosh roots can get quite large on good sites and can often produce
several hundred pounds per acre. So of our very largest roots have pushed five
pounds green.

I am very much interested in the sustainable production of woodland medicinal
plants. I am working to incorporate that in my overall plans for how I do my
forest management.    

On our own place we have been planting ginseng for several years and I have
been transplanting thousands of Goldenseal plants I've rescued from logging

At Crummies Creek we have a significant native population of black Cohosh
that covers several hundred acres. In addition to selling the roots we are
starting to also sell seeds. The seeds of many medicinal plants can be quite

Bloodroot, which is fairly common in Massachusetts has a rapidly developing
market as a cattle feed additive (in lieu of antibiotics).

I attend a participate in a number of conferences and meetings on the subject
of Nontimber forest products each year and I believe that this is where truly
cutting edge sustainable forestry is going to head.

There is much to say and little time so I'd better quit for now.

Russ Richardson
Re: NonTimberForestProducts
  Feb 26, 2004 05:27 PST 

Wild simulated ginseng is regular American ginseng (Panax cinquefolia) that
is planted in a way that it will produce wild looking roots. Often referred to
as the "scatter and scratch" planting method, you rake back the leaves
underneath a forest canopy of maple, poplar and basswood, loosen up the dirt a
little and bury ginseng seeds under the leaves and duff. After planting the seeds,
you walk away for 7 to 10 years.

American Ginseng is a medicinal plant of long standing value and significance
and it has been determined that the plants do not start accumulating
significant amounts of the ginsenicides (the medicinal oomph ginseng is famous for)
until the roots are 7 years old.   

Wild ginseng is listed as a CITES II plant and there are international
restrictions on its export. Simulated wild roots are indistinguishable from wild
roots and all ginseng roots must be at least 5 years old to be legal for export.

Wild American ginseng typically sells for $1,000 to $1,500 per pound in Hong
Kong and the price may double again before it gets into central China.

Artificially propagated ginseng sells for about $6/pound and can easily be
identified as being such. Woods grown ginseng can bring $50-$100/pound with
wild and wild simulated at the top of the heap at $400+.

Ginseng has been wild harvested and exported since 1718 and it was the first
material tracked by the US government. It is also what funded all of Daniel
Boone's explorations. Ginseng was also one of the primary reasons for
development of the National Pike from coastal Virginia to the Ohio River in the late

If your interested, I can pass along an article on ginseng I wrote for the WV
legislature a few years ago.


"Bob Leverett Wrote: What is Wild simulated gensing? Do you know the botanical name or any other names?"

Re: Non Timber Forest Products   greentreedoctor
  Feb 26, 2004 06:02 PST 
American Ginseng

Botanical name: Panax quinquefolius

Parts used and where grown
Like its more familiar cousin Asian ginseng (Panax ginseng), the root of American ginseng is used medicinally. The plant grows wild in shady forests of the northern and central United States, as well as in parts of Canada. It is cultivated in the United States, China, and France.

American ginseng has been used in connection with the following conditions (refer to the individual health concern for complete information):

      Rating Health Concerns
     Athletic performance


       Reliable and relatively consistent scientific data showing a substantial health benefit.
       Contradictory, insufficient, or preliminary studies suggesting a health benefit or minimal health benefit.
       An herb is primarily supported by traditional use, or the herb or supplement has little scientific support and/or minimal health benefit.

Historical or traditional use (may or may not be supported by scientific studies)
Many Native American tribes used American ginseng. Medicinal applications ranged from digestive disorders to sexual problems.1 The Chinese began to use American ginseng after it was imported during the 1700s.2 The traditional applications of American ginseng in China are significantly different from those for Panax ginseng (Asian ginseng).3

Active constituents
American ginseng contains ginsenosides, which are thought to fight fatigue and stress by supporting the adrenal glands and the use of oxygen by exercising muscles.4 The type and ratio of ginsenosides are somewhat different in American and Asian ginseng. The extent to which this affects their medicinal properties is unclear. A recent preliminary trial with healthy volunteers found no benefit in exercise performance after one week of taking American ginseng.5
In a small pilot study, 3 grams of American ginseng was found to lower the rise in blood sugar following the consumption of a drink high in glucose by people with type 2 diabetes.6 The study found no difference in blood sugar lowering effect if the herb was taken either 40 minutes before the drink or at the same time. A follow-up to this study found that increasing the amount of American ginseng to either 6 or 9 grams did not increase the effect on blood sugar following the high-glucose drink in people with type 2 diabetes.7 This study also found that American ginseng was equally effective in controlling the rise in blood sugar if it was given up to two hours before or together with the drink.

How much is usually taken?
Standardized extracts of American ginseng, unlike Asian ginseng, are not available. However, dried root powder, 1-3 grams per day in capsule or tablet form, can be used.8 Some herbalists also recommend 3-5 ml of tincture three times per day.

Are there any side effects or interactions?
Occasional cases of insomnia or agitation have been reported with the use of American ginseng. These conditions are more likely, however, when caffeine-containing foods and beverages are also being consumed.9

At the time of writing, there were no well-known drug interactions with American ginseng.

1. Duke J. Ginseng: A Concise Handbook. Algonac, MI: Reference Publications, 1989, 36.

2. Bensky D, Gamble A, Kaptchuk T. Chinese Herbal Medicine: Materia Medica. Seattle: Eastland Press, 1993, 358-9.

3. Bensky D, Gamble A, Kaptchuk T. Chinese Herbal Medicine: Materia Medica. Seattle: Eastland Press, 1993, 358-9.

4. Shibata S, Tanaka O, Shoji J, Saito H. Chemistry and pharmacology of Panax. Econ Med Plant Res 1:218-84.

5. Morris AC, Jacobs I, McLellan TM, et al. No ergogenic effect on ginseng ingestion. Int J Sport Nutr 1996;6:263-71.

6. Vuksan V, Sivenpiper JL, Koo VYY, et al. American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius L.) reduces postprandial glycemia in nondiabetic subjects and subjects with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Arch Intern Med 2000;160:1009-13.

7. Vuksan V, Sivenpiper JL, Koo VYY, et al. American ginseng (Panax quinquefolius L.) reduces postprandial glycemia in nondiabetic subjects and subjects with type 2 diabetes mellitus. Arch Intern Med 2000;160:1009-13.

8. Foster S. Herbs for Health. Loveland, CO: Interweave Press, 1996, 48-9.

9. Yun TK, Choi Y. Preventive effect of ginseng intake against various human cancers: A case-control study on 1987 pairs. Cancer Epidem Biomarkers Prev 1995;4:401-8.

Fwd: Agriculture becomes forestry   Maurice Schwartz
  Sep 15, 2004 17:34 PDT 


This is to forward the following interesting quote, from the
forestry-focus list, about one view of changes in forests and in
prospects for wood products.


-----Original Message-----
Date: Wed, 15 Sep 2004 15:36:57 -0400
Subject: Agriculture becomes forestry

Begin Quote
Agriculture becomes forestry

It has never been easy to say where agriculture stops and forestry
starts. Many governments call some areas "forest land" even though
there aren't any trees and farmers grow crops there. Most people
consider livestock part of agriculture, but millions of farmers graze
cattle in forests. Agroforestry is stuck somewhere between
agriculture and forestry and has never found a real home in either.

Now things are getting even fuzzier. People increasingly use
"agricultural" crops to make "forestry" products. Each year Malaysia
and Thailand export almost 1.5 billion dollars of furniture made from
rubber trees, and coconut palms supply more than an eighth of the
timber used by Filipinos. Fruit trees like mangos, tamarinds, and
jackfruits provide much of the wood in Sri Lanka and the Indian state
of Kerala. In the future, a significant share of Asia's particleboard
and fiberboard may come from tree crops, bamboo, straw, and sugar

Admittedly, this phenomenon is not entirely new. The Chinese have
made most of their paper from straw and other crop residues for
centuries. Nonetheless, we are likely to see more of this as natural
forests run out of wood, old tree crops need replacing, and new
processing techniques open up all sorts of fresh possibilities for
using raw materials. Right now Southeast Asia has enough old rubber
trees to be able to harvest more than 6.5 million cubic meters of
wood each year. That practically equals the entire timber harvest of
Central Africa.

You can read about all this in "Asia's New Woods", by Pat Durst, Wulf
Kilmann, and Chris Brown from the FAO, published recently in the
Journal of Forestry. As they tell the story, any day soon people may
start making doors and windows from tomatoes!
End Quote
agro-forestry   edniz
  Sep 19, 2004 05:57 PDT 


            I was surprised to see the agro-forestry topic appear. I was
planning on making a contribution myself, but it was looking at
agro-forestry in a different viewpoint. Taking into account my lack of
training in science, there seems to be two types of agro-forestry. One is
looking at the forest and the trees that grow within it as the "crop". This
"crop" can be harvested in a sustainable manner or it can be clear-cut. If
clear-cutting is done, planting can be done manually or nature can take its
time until the forest has returned.

            There is another kind of agro-forestry that looks at the forest
being the environment for a variety of associated products. These can
include nut trees (hickory or walnut), various herbs such as ginseng,
mushrooms and berries. I have always known about these uses, but I was
exposed to a more scientific approach to these philosophy up at Cornell
about 10 days ago. It was a "Forest Farming Tour" done at the MacDaniels
Nut Grove near Cornell University. L. H. MacDaniels (1888 - 1986) was a
horticulturalist who did experimental grafting of walnut and hickory trees
with other types of root stock back in the 1930's. The project was dropped
and the grove wasn't maintained, but many of his trees did survive. Cornell
has revived this idea and is once again experimenting and maintaining the

            The interest in this approach is surprisingly strong with about
70 people expressing an interest in the tour. In spite of a rainy evening
there were still 25 of us who came, some traveling 75 to 100 miles. Kenneth
Mudge, a professor of horticulture at Cornell, was our guide, but a number
of people from Cooperative Extension are involved. Mudge has one of his
classes go into the grove to inoculate oak limbs with shitake mushrooms,
plant elderberry, raspberry and ginseng and continue grafting experiments.

            There is another tour on Sunday, September 26 from 1 to 2:30.
They are having a class on forest based berry crops on October 15th. The
cost for this is $30. Another program on October 26th will be spent with a
ginseng grower. The contact person for these programs is Jim Ochterski

            Here is a URL for the MacDaniels Nut Grove project:

Here are two other URL's on agro-forestry:

Ed Nizalowski

Newark Valley, NY
Re: agro-forestry
  Sep 19, 2004 06:58 PDT 

Agroforestry and the management of the forest for a number of sustainably
producible Nontimber forest products is a burgeoning area of forestry. It is
still off the docket of nearly all forestry schools and is just starting to
gain acceptance as a management (income producing) option among some of the
largest industrial property owners.

There is an excellent program taking place this coming week in Beckley, WV
at Mountain State University and the program can be viewed at
_www.mountainstate.edu_ ( The program agenda can be reached


I get to be the very last speaker at the symposium when I speak on NTFP's
and sustainable forest management.

This is likely to be one of the hottest and most divergent topics in
forestry in coming years and it is an area with a pitiful amount of science
completed to this point.

Agroforestry is a very controversial topic in the SAF and I personally saw a
speaker shouted down at a Society of American Foresters (SAF) national
convention when he proposed that the SAF form a Nontimber forest product working
group. Agroforestry is definitely not the same thing as managing for
Nontimber forest for NTFP's is the heart of sustainable forest

I better quit ranting for now.

Russ Richardson