QUẢNG NAM A large amount of a precious and endangered flora gene has been found inside a forest in central Quảng Nam Province.
The 1,000 hectares Ba Kích ginseng area in Đăk Mi Preventive Forest is located on a mountainside 500 metres above sea level.
Ginseng has high value and sells for VNĐ400,000-500,000 (US$19-24) per kilogram of fresh tuber.
Lê Trí Thanh, vice chairman of the provincial People’s Committee, told Tuổi Trẻ (Youth) newspaper that this was the largest natural forest of Ba Kích ginseng in the province.
The province has asked agencies to protect the ginseng and turn it into a special original Ba Kích gene conservation area.
Hồ Ngọc Vương, official of Đăk Mi Preventive Forest’s Management Board, said the ginseng was found by a local resident, who was also a member of a community forest management team.
Vương said the management board was surprised to see such a thick density of ginseng.
Huỳnh Đức Vũ, ranger of Đăk Mi Preventive Forest said it was impossible to count the number of ginseng tubers in the area.
Since being informed of the rare find, Phước Sơn District’s People’s Committee has taken measures to protect the ginseng.
An inspection station, including a house for rangers, was set up in the forest. Four rangers have been mobilised to be on duty around-the-clock to protect the ginseng from illegal loggers.
Ranger Cao Văn Long said his team was busier as they were patrolling the forest more often.
Nguyễn Văn Tình, director of Đăk Mi Preventive Forest’s Management Board, said samples of Ba Kích ginseng were tested to have good quality.
The provincial Forest Protection Sub-department and Phước Sơn District’s People’s Committee have assigned the management board to manage and protect the ginseng.
Tình said the management board is building a plan to conserve and breed the ginseng for local residents to grow in other forests in the province.
The ginseng is a kind of vine that grows under the foot of big trees, so it wouldn’t have any impact on the forest ecology. This would help develop a medicinal area and protect the rare ginseng, he said.
Nguyễn Quảng, vice chairman of Phước Sơn District’s People’s Committee, said the district has selected an area of nearly 9,000ha in Đăk Mi Preventive Forest to conserve and breed the ginseng.
Ba Kích ginseng has long been used in traditional medicine in Việt Nam as a tonic for nourishing the kidney, strengthening the bone and enhancing treatment of rheumatism, pain and high blood pressure. VNS