A 67-year-old, ginseng hunter, has found a nearly one-pound wild ginseng root in western Maryland. Local dealers and market reports said it is a rarity and could be worth thousands of dollars. It was the biggest lumpy tan root with multiple twisted arms the hunter has ever found in his 45-years of hunting ginseng.
Roger Welch, from Kitzmiller said, "Every time I go out to dig for roots, I hope it's a big one. This one, all the dealers said they'd never seen one this size. Only one had even heard of one that big."
The ginseng root weighed just under 16 ounces to be one pound. He said it usually takes 40 to 60 average-sized roots to make a pound but he has found only one root that is equivalent to 60 ginsengs.
According to Larry Harding, owner of Harding's Ginseng Farm, in Friendsville said, price of dried wild roots costs about $400, but this season, ginseng could reach of up to $600 per pound.
Harding also added that Welch's ginseng could make a higher price in the market because he believed that as plant's age, it's potency increases. Harding estimated that Welch found a 100-year-old ginseng.
"It is an unusual find," Harding said. "You just don't run across roots of that size."