Glacial Ginseng Co
About Michael Hunter and Glacial Ginseng Co.
by, Mary Hunter
He has a vision in life, at a time of life when most men are planning to
retire and play golf the rest of their days To see the endangered specie,
ginseng re-introduced into the wild, back into the woods where it once
grew naturally for hundreds of years His efforts to introduce genetically
cross-bred seeds have been tireless.
Due to the great demand for it in the past,
ginseng was gathered to the point of almost disappearing from the
wild. In the cultures of China, Japan, Korea and through out the
regions of Asia, ginseng is prized for its reputed powers to cleanse the
blood, extend life, and of course the very strong belief that it is a
powerful aphrodisiac. Growing up in a family that had been involved
in ginseng gathering and growing for three generations, gave Michael a
invaluable education. He absorbed a wealth of knowledge of ginseng
Mr. Hunters mission is indeed two-fold. While
he works, tirelessly towards the goal of genetically cross-bred
ginseng. The result of which should bring about the growth of
healthier, hardier, longer living plants. He also pursues the goal
of helping families get started growing ginseng and making a worthy profit
for those families.
A cottage industry the benefits the whole family and
our wilderness as well Indeed a worthy effort. Mr. Hunter has spent
all of his life in the wilderness. As a child he spent every fall,
in the woods, hunting, fishing, and of course hunting ginseng.
This time spent in the wilderness with his father
gave young Michael a wealth of survival skills. It also gave him a
deep appreciation of the unique and valuable asset we have in our forests
here in Michigan, and elsewhere. It has instilled a lifelong respect
for the wilderness and a deep conviction that it needs to be preserved and
also encouraged to grow better. Because of his Native American
heritage, Michael believes in the powers of natural herbs and plants to
heal a variety of ills, and that the mind and body work hand in hand in
the healing process.
A factual biography of the life of Michael Hunter
would rival any work of adventure/fiction on the best seller lists
today, Woodsman, prospector, guide, timber cruiser, webmaster,
editor, seed and root dealer and grower, and recognized humanitarian
Michael Hunter is a very multi-faceted man. His close association
with the USDA and Michigan State University is a long standing and very
cordial working relationship.
Which, in the near future, may be the source of some
very exciting news for the ginseng industry. These are the things to keep
in mind when reading his book "The Ginseng Growers Guide", or
when reading through the website at www.ginseng-seed.com
This is a man who has committed himself to a vision and has invested his
time, expertise, and money, plus part of himself toward having it
Michael realizes that he may not see the final
results of his goals, But all of our children and grandchildren
will. That is his life long quest Michael Hunter, owner of Glacial
Ginseng Company, he is far from being your average guy, but once you have
met him you feel at ease with him and you just begin to realize the depth
He is a humanitarian, a logger, a miner, a
ginsengers, a trail blazer, an explorer, a pioneer, a fisherman, a nature
balancer, a teacher, a student, an author, and a guide And a very bold one
of each. A modern day "Indiana Jones" He has done
all of the above and has written a book, Ginseng Grower’s Guide,
which is both informative and interesting.
When you read his book, keep in mind every paragraph
is but one fraction of his knowledge. As a Native American, he often
relies on his Indian background as his guide He tells people, "White
man walk many miles, see little; Indian walk little, see much" How
true! His dream is of balancing man and nature.
His ideas are both moneymaking and
environmentally correct I have walked the woods with him and
immediately, I am struck by how at home he is It is there in the woods
where you can see his dream in his eyes, balancing nature with man.
Take what you need and leave the rest.
Balance always balance, I go to church; he goes to
the woods. He has helped me see how we are all living spirits,
people, trees, plants, fish and definitely his dog
"Buddy". If we follow our spirits like we do our nose, we
will see our dreams become reality.
Periodically, throughout this year Glacial Ginseng
Company and Michael will put out newsletters so people who are interested
can literally "watch" him as he balances his life with nature
and ginseng. You won’t be bored, either. You can balance
most things, new – old, as in old techniques and new technology.
Our guide, Michael, will take you through all the seasons; harvesting
timber, fall and spring planting of ginseng, mining for gold and diamonds,
harvesting ginseng seeds and roots, hunting, fishing and trapping.
As your ginseng matures beside your timber, you will
achieve a balance between forestry and farming that will give you both
financial and personal gratification. Michael believes that when the
student is ready, the teacher will appear, I believe that, also. He
believes in building a strong foundation in both his personal and business
life. He is a trailblazer, pioneer, explorer all rolled into one.
By, Michael Hunter
You could say that I was literally born into the ginseng business My
Mother still enjoys telling the story of how Dad took her out hunting for
ginseng three days before I was born. Early fall is when the berries
start to turn red and Dad always enjoyed his bow hunting, the October
season, here in Michigan, coincides very nicely with ginseng harvesting.
My Dad felt that it was important that I be able to
live off the land, as well as be able to live in a conventional
society. He was a product of the depression era, and grew up in
extremely hard times. Ginseng was one of the things that did move in
the depression, that and black walnut logs. For the last thirty-two
years, I have worked as a timber cruiser for American Veneer Company, this
also gave me an excellent chance to pursue the hunt of the wild ginseng.
I worked a number of years in the Minnesota and
Wisconsin regions and got very involved with the woods growers of
ginseng/ They used to have me come in and balance the woods, so that
we could get the light right in the forest. The passing of the 1994
ginseng law here in Michigan, opened up this territory. As a timber
cruiser, my work was seasonal.
As the sap came down in the trees and the logging
operations started for the year, it was my job to mark the trees, select
the more mature trees, etc; So l have always been involved in the
business. Dad and I wanted to get into the idea of commercially
growing ginseng. We were getting there in '72, when they passed the
endangered species act which included ginseng.
Dad wanted to grow ginseng for his retirement, I am
trying to go on to make his dream a reality. Timber season ends in
early spring when the sap starts to rise, I usually spent my summers out
in the gold fields of the western states. Originally as a prospector
looking for the mother lode, but as the years passed, I found it was much
more interesting to be a mining guide, taking the weekend prospectors out.
The real enjoyment is in the finding! The last two
years have produced some very serious changes in my life. Tendonitis, A
old mining injury to my right arm, has come back to haunt me. This
along with the injury to my left hand, has led me to early retirement.
I am going to continue on with the business, so I am using this web site
to write a new book. It will be about growing ginseng, forestry,
fishing, recreational gold and diamond prospecting and river reclamation.
It will be dedicated to balancing man, nature and seeing Ginseng
reestablished in my lifetime. I intend to continue my ginseng seed
business and research. I feel that I can do more to reestablishing
ginseng into its Natural Environment with a web page, than any other way.
"Our Family" Has Been in the Ginseng Business for
189 Years. Ginseng has been in our family for many
generations. It began with my great-great-great Grandfather who, in
1812, married a Seneca Chieftain's daughter and became one of Michigan's
pioneers in the Ginseng and Fur business. He worked for the J J
Astor Fur Co., out of Fort Detroit.
Harold G Hunter, my father, was a Ginseng Dealer for over 50
years. All of the local ginseng gatherers used to bring their
Ginseng to him, and he would market it for them. I am trying to
follow his foot steps.