Introduction of Ngoc Linh Ginseng – K5 Ginseng

Ngoc Linh Ginseng (scientific nomenclature: Panax vietnamensis) is a tree belonging to the Orange family (Araliaceae), also known as Vietnamese ginseng, Nam Hai ginseng (K5 ginseng), ginseng ( Ginseng burning structure, ginseng ginseng structure) wormwood root or concealed medicinal plant, is a precious ginseng found in Central Vietnam, grows in mountainous districts of Ngoc Linh in Dak To district, Kon Tum province , Nam Tra My district, Quang Nam province. In addition to Ngoc Linh, ginseng is also distributed at the mountain Ngoc Lum Heo in Phuoc Loc commune, Phuoc Son district and possibly even at the top of Ngoc Am in Quang Nam province according to the latest survey results. On the altitude of 1,200 to 2,600m, Ngoc Linh ginseng grows thickly under the forest canopy along the moist streams on humus soil.

Ngoc Linh Ginseng is also the 20th kind of ginseng found in the world. According to the research results from 1978 of the Ministry of Health of Vietnam, the root of Ngoc Linh Vietnamese Ginseng contains 26 saponin compounds The known chemical structure and 24 new structural saponins are not found in other ginsengs, while Korean ginseng has about 25 saponins. The latest published research and chemical composition results also extend Ngoc Linh’s saponin list further, to a total of 52 types. Thus, Vietnamese ginseng is one of the ginseng types with the highest saponin content, similar to some precious ginseng that has been used for a long time in the world. The various chemical compounds and practical effects on human health make Ngoc Linh ginseng now marketed with increasing prices, even higher than Korean ginseng.

1. Discovery history

Before the discovery of scientists, gin Ngoc Linh was used by the ethnic minority people in Central Vietnam, especially the Xe Dang ethnic group, as a forest root, which they called is a wormwood bug or a hidden medicinal plant, curing many diseases according to traditional remedies. Based on the information circulated in the Kon Tum ethnic minority community about a rare tuber on Ngoc Linh mountain, it has good effects on human health, and due to the needs of the resistance, it has made the pharmaceutical sector Central China decided to find Panax ginseng in Central Vietnam, although many scientists previously thought that Panax was only available in the North.

Pharmacist Dao Kim Long who risked his life to find Ngoc Linh ginseng.

In 1973, Trung Trung Health Zone appointed a team of 4 officers led by pharmacist Dao Kim Long , Engineer Nguyen Ba Hoat , pharmacist Nguyen Chau Giang , pharmacist Tran Thanh Dan is a member, went to investigate and found ginseng in the direction of the mountain Ngoc Linh mountain in Dak To district, Kon Tum province. When the delegation arrived in Kon Tum province, Ban Dan y Kon Tum sent more pharmacist Nguyen Thi Le to assist the delegation, leading the way to Ngoc Linh mountain. After several days of crossing the forest and stream, until 9 am on March 19, 1973, at 1,800 meters altitude, the delegation discovered the first two ginseng and immediately found an area in the afternoon. Large ginseng is located in the west of Ngoc Linh mountain. After 15 days of comprehensive research on morphology, ecology, populations, populations, distribution, migration and dispersal, pharmacist Dao Kim Long has identified Ngoc Linh mountain as the home of new, special ginseng rare and precious, has never appeared anywhere else in the world. According to Dr. Tran Chi Liem, Vice Minister of Vietnam Ministry of Health: this is an important contribution to science, adding new knowledge about Panax distribution area down to latitude 15 and supplementing Panax expenditure. They are Araliaceae a new species.

After ginseng was discovered, Zone 5 Zone Committee instructed the Department of Civil Medicine to secretly protect and exploit and deliver to Trung Trung Pharmaceutical Factory to process medicine to serve cadres, soldiers and people; at the same time send samples to the Ministry of Health, Hanoi Institute of Medicine.
In the years after peace was restored, in October 1978 a second working group went to Ngoc Linh mountain area with the task of preliminary estimating the area of ​​growing ginseng. The result was the discovery of an area tens of kilometers long, with reserves of about 6,000-7,000 dense growing ginseng with a density of 1 square meter per tree to 7.8 square meters per tree. The average weight of ginseng root is 5.26 grams; the number of stems weighing more than 25 grams is 7.39% and the number of rhizomes with more than 10 scars (estimated over 8 years old) is 36.9%. This survey obtained 1 rhizome with 52 scars (estimated tree over 50 years old), 1.2 cm diameter, although this is not the longest living rhizome. In searches, later investigations also found that trees about 82 years old had roots, tubers and rhizomes longer than half a meter.

2. Scientific nomenclature

June 8, 1973 at the Office of the Department of Civil Medicine, Division 5 pharmacists Dao Kim Long , the project manager studying ginseng Linh clarified the morphological, ecological, population, vegetation, adaptability, dispersal, regeneration abilities of this ginseng plant, along with reports of pepper a sample of dry pressed grass, photos and 3kg of dried ginseng. The pharmacist Dao Kim Long named the scientific name of Ngoc Linh ginseng as Panax articulatus KL Dao (in the resistance to keep it secret, so it is often called Sam K5), or Panax articulatus Kim Long Dao by the name of the discoverer. 12 years later, the name of Vietnamese Ginseng and its scientific name is Panax vietnamesis Ha et Grushy, Ngu Gia Araliaceae, published at the Real Institute Kamarov (former Soviet Union) in 1985, named by Ha Thi Dung and IV Grushvistky. Applying the International Code of botanical nomenclature published in 1994 (ICBN – Tokyo code), Article 1, Section 3, Part C, the scientific name of Ngoc Linh ginseng can be linked with the name of the second person announced to The first person name is called ex, and then the scientific name of Ngoc Linh ginseng that is legally written under international law will now be Panax articulatus KL Dao (1973) ex Ha et Gruskv (1985).

3. Characteristics:

Ginseng is found at an altitude of 1,200m or more (there is a document that the altitude found Ngoc Linh ginseng is about 1,500m), reaching the highest density in the range of 1,700-2,000m under the canopy of old forest, and So far only two provinces of Kon Tum and Quang Nam have this ginseng. Ginseng grows concentrated at the foot of Ngoc Linh mountain, a 2,578m high mountain with red yellow soil layer on granite thicker than 50cm, with high humus, loose and primitive forest, so it is called Ngoc Linh ginseng, Although the latest field research shows that ginseng grows even at Ngoc Lum Heo mountain in Phuoc Loc commune, Phuoc Son district, Quang Nam province, Ngoc Am mountain peak in Quang Nam, Dac Glây in Kontum, Langbian mountain in Luoyang Lam Dong province is also very likely to have this type of ginseng. This is a perennial herbaceous plant, 40cm to 100cm tall, at first glance very much like Korean ginseng, but look closely to see scarred rhizomes and burning stings like bamboo stems due to the loss of the body gas every year.

Ngoc Linh ginseng has a vertical, biogas, green or purple, small body, with a diameter of 4-8mm, often fading every year, but sometimes it still exists for a few years. Rhizomes have a diameter of 1-2cm, growing horizontally like the root bulb on or below the ground about 1-3cm, carrying many branch roots and tubers. The leaf-bearing stems and corresponding to each leaf-bearing stem are a fire about 0.5-0.7 cm long, although ginseng has only one leaf that does not shed from year 1 to year 3 and only from year 4 onwards, only have 2 to 3 more cards]. On the top of the leaf-bearing body is the propeller-shaped double leaf that grows with 3-5 leaf branches. Double leaf stalks are 6-12mm long, bearing 5 leaflets, the central leaflets are larger than those of 12-15 cm long, 3-4 cm wide. Leaf leaflets oval, serrated edges, pointed tips, leaves with feathers on both sides. The 4-5 year old tree has a single canopy flower that grows under the leaves straight to the stem, the stem canopy of 10-20 cm long can be accompanied by 1-4 canopy or a single flower below the main canopy. Each canopy has 60-100 flowers, flower stalks are 1-1.5 cm short, sepals 5, petals 5, light yellow, stamen 5, vote 1 box with 1 stamen. The fruit grows in the center of the foliage, about 0.8cm-1cm long and about 0.5cm-0.6cm wide, after two months it starts to change from blue to dark green, yellowish green, when it turns red orange with an irregular black dot at the top. Each fruit contains one seed, some fruits contain 2 seeds and the average number of fruits on the tree is about 10 to 30 fruits.

Grows under moist forests, humus, suitable for daytime temperatures from 20 ° C-25 ° C, night 15 ° C-18 ° C, ginseng Ngoc Linh can live for a long time, even over 100 years, grow quite slowly. Parts used to make medicine are mainly rhizomes, tubers and also can be used Ginseng Leaf Ngoc Linh and rootlets. In early January every year, ginseng appears new shoots after hibernation season, the biogas body grows into mature ginseng with 1 flower. From April to June, trees bloom and result. July begins to have ripe fruits and lasts until September. At the end of October, the dead body gradually fades, leaves fall, leaving a scar on the head of ginseng and the plant begins its dormancy in December. It is based on the scars on the head of the root every winter that people can recognize how old the ginseng is, at least 3 years old on the tuber with a scar (after 3 years of ginseng only losing one leaf) new can be exploited, recommended above 5 years old. Winter is also the best harvest season of ginseng rhizomes.

4. Pharmacology

Since 1973, there have been many domestic and foreign agencies and scientists studying Ngoc Linh ginseng, and nearly 50 graduate students successfully defended doctoral and doctoral dissertation from research projects. Save on this rare plant.
In 1974 and 1975, the Institute of Medicinal Materials under the Ministry of Health investigated that the saponin triterpen component of the three ventricles, ginseng and Ngoc Linh ginseng had 9 or 11 equal Rf substances, the same color in two other solvent systems. together. According to the evaluation of Nguyen Minh Duc, Vo Duy Huan in 1994, the ginseng Ngoc Linh has extracted 50 compounds, determining the chemical structure showing 26 compounds of known structure (commonly found in Korean ginseng, American ginseng, Japanese ginseng and 24 pammaran saponins with new structures are not found in other ginsengs in the world. Ngoc Linh Ginseng contains mainly saponin triterpen, but is also one of the ginseng plants with the highest pammaran saponin content (about 12-15%) and the highest amount of saponin compared to other species of Panax genus. In addition, ginseng Ngoc Linh also has 14 fatty acids, 16 amino acids (including 8 amino acids that cannot be replaced) and 18 multicellular and microelements.

The latest research results add to the list of longer saponins and amino acids. According to Dr. Nguyen Ba Hoat from the Institute of Medicine, chemically, the current rhizomes and roots of Ngoc Linh (2007) have isolated 52 saponins of which 26 sanopin are often found in Korean ginseng and American ginseng. Japanese ginseng. In the leaves and stalks, 19 pammaran saponins were isolated, of which 8 saponins had a new structure. Identified in ginseng Ngoc Linh 17 amino acids, 20 trace minerals and oil content of 0.1%.

5. Health effects

Before there were thorough studies on the health effects of Ngoc Linh ginseng, ginseng was used by Vietnamese minorities, such as the Xe Dang, as a medicine in traditional remedies, bleeding. healing wounds, making tonic, malaria, abdominal pain, edema. According to Dr. Nguyen Ba Hoat , Deputy Director of the Vietnam Institute of Medicinal Materials, the research results of experimental pharmacology of Ngoc Linh ginseng have demonstrated the effects against physical stress, psychological stress and depression. cold, immune system stimulation, antioxidant, aging, cancer prevention, liver cell protection. Research on clinical pharmacology of Ngoc Linh ginseng also gives good results: patients eat well, sleep well, gain weight, increase vision, improve mental and physical activity, increase resistance, improve the In case of neurasthenia and hypogonadism, raising blood pressure in people with low blood pressure. In addition to the effects such as Dr. Nguyen Ba Hoat mentioned above, according to pharmacist Dao Kim Long, Ngoc Linh ginseng has excellent features such as boosting energy, restoring functional decline to help the body’s condition return to the bottle. often; resistance to toxins that damage cells, help prolong cell life and increase new cells. In particular, Ngoc Linh ginseng has the features that Korean ginseng and Chinese ginseng do not have: antibacterial, antidepressant, anxiety reduction, anti-oxidation, and good synergies with antibiotics, antidepressants Street.

6. Natural conditions of Panax Ngoc Linh distribution area

Vietnam Ginseng (Ngoc Linh Ginseng) is currently distributed in narrow ecological areas, around the peak of Ngoc Linh mountain, under the canopy of primitive forests belonging to the territory of 3 districts: Nam Tra My (Quang Nam), Dak Glei and Tu Mo Rong (Kon Tum) of Ngoc Linh Ginseng Joint Stock Company . The growth and development area of Ngoc Linh ginseng lies entirely on Ngoc Linh mountain range, with geographical coordinates ranging from 14 ° 44 ‘to 15 ° 13’ Northern latitude and 107 ° 45 ‘to 108 ° 10’ East longitude, this is also the southernmost limit (about 15 ° North latitude) of the distribution map of Panax L. in the world. Vietnam ginseng growing area (Ngoc Linh ginseng) has the following climatic characteristics:

The average annual rainfall of the ginseng region is from 2,600 to 3,200mm. The annual average temperature ranges from 15 to 18.5 0 c. The total annual evaporation is from 670 to 770 mm. The average humidity is from 85.5 to 87.5%.

Ngoc Linh Ginseng plantation area is mostly located in protective forest belts with a coverage density of over 80%. Besides, the growing area of ​​Sam Ngoc Linh also has the following soil characteristics:

Natural ginseng and ginseng grown only grow and develop under the canopy of primeval forest, where there are thick litter. Because the ecological characteristics of ginseng Ngoc Linh only grow on the litter layer without growing underground, the areas with thick litter are where the ideal conditions for growing ginseng grow and develop. Under the canopy of primeval forests also create conditions of soil moisture suitable for growing and growing ginseng.

+ Terrain characteristics
The Vietnamese ginseng region (Ngoc Linh ginseng) lives mainly in highland communes like Kon Tum province. Ngoc Linh massif is the second highest massif in Vietnam, part of the Southern Truong Son. This massif is located on the plateau in the North Central Highlands, Vietnam, in the provinces of Kon Tum, Quang Nam, Quang Ngai and Gia Lai. This massif runs in the direction of Northwest – Southeast starting with Ngk Lum Heo mountain, Muong Hoong mountain, Ngoc Linh, Ngoc Krinh, Ngok Tem, Ngok Roo with an average altitude of about 800 – 2,600 m. The highest peak is Ngoc Linh peak (2,598 m), Ngk Tu Mang (1,994 m), Ngok Puok (2,370 m), Ngk Pang (2,378 m). Ngoc Linh massif has a strong separation, a large slope, and many narrow and deep valleys.

Based on the distribution characteristics, Ngoc Linh ginseng lives from a high altitude of 1,400 m or more, where the forest coverage is over 80%, the ginseng grows and grows well.

+ River and hydrological characteristics

Distribution zone (Vietnamese ginseng) Ngoc Linh ginseng with a height of over 1,400 m, has a large system of natural forest cover, especially thick carpet layer is the place to store and release water sources for rivers, Large stream in the region. In the ginseng growing area, there is only a system of small streams and large river systems such as: Dak Psi river basin is located in Tu Mo Rong district with the largest area concentrated in the East – South of the district; including stream systems such as Chim Stream, Dak PSi stream, Dak Lay stream, Dak Ter stream, Dak Xe stream, … Dak Kan river basin in Tu Mo Rong district mainly in the South-West of the district. Streams in the Po Ko river basin are distributed mainly in the West – North districts. In addition, there are watershed streams flowing north of the Ngoc Linh massif to rivers like Vu Gia, Thu Bon river in Quang Nam province, Tra Khuc river in Quang Ngai province, … In general, the region Ngoc Linh ginseng cultivation, although there are no large streams, but has a thick coefficient of cover and thick litter system has created a high humidity area, good water retention capacity is suitable to ecological requirements of Ngoc Linh ginseng.

+ Climate characteristics:

There is a block of Northeast monsoon air and Southwest air mass. In addition, with the characteristics of elevation, high coverage density, … has created a tropical Asia climate very suitable to the ecological requirements of Ngoc Linh ginseng. The climatic conditions of this region have very different characteristics compared to surrounding areas, such as: heavy rainfall, high humidity, low evaporation, low temperature, …

Rain mode depends on the effect of 2 air masses. Rainfall from May to October is due to the impact of the southwest monsoon and from November to April next year due to the direct impact of the Northeast monsoon. Northeast slopes (high mountains of Nam Tra My district, Quang Nam province) with high concentration of rainfall, with an average rainfall of 2,800 – 3,200 mm; for the southwestern slopes, the rainfall is lower on the East side with the average annual rainfall reaching 2,600 – 2,800 mm. Ngoc Linh ginseng growing area has an average annual rainfall of 2,600 – 3,200 mm.

Rainfall in the year mainly concentrates from June to September, during this time the rainfall accounts for about 65-70% of the total annual rainfall. The months with the lowest rainfall are December, January and February. When studying the ginseng’s life, after the dormant period (after December) the tree begins to grow and from April to June the plant flowers and results, July begins to ripen and last until the month Nine. Thus, the distribution of rainfall in the year is relatively consistent with the growth and development periods of Ngoc Linh ginseng. At the end of October, the body of Ngoc Linh Ginseng faded away, the leaves fell, leaving a scar on the head of ginseng and the plant began to hibernate in December, this is also the beginning of the season. dry, mulch starts draining, facilitating the storage of protoplasm in ginseng root, not causing yellow rot disease of ginseng caused by moisture.


In general, the temperature has gradually decreased from the South to the North, from East to West, depending heavily on the altitude, seasons in the year, etc. Although the Ngoc Linh growing area is located in the Northern Hemisphere tropical belt. but due to the distribution at altitudes above 1,800 m, the average temperature background is much lower than other low-lying areas. The results of analysis and processing of spatial variation and elevation of temperature factors show that the coldest average temperature is below 10 ° C; The average temperature of the highest month is about 20 ° c. Total annual heat is below 7,500 ° c. The temperature in the Southwest area is higher than in the Northeast, popular from 2 – 4 ° c. Air temperature is lowest in December and January, reaching the highest in April and May. The annual average temperature is about 15 – 18.5 ° c. December to January next year has the lowest temperature, averaging about 8-11 ° c, with the background of the minimum temperature ranging from 5.5 – 8.5 ° c. April, May have the highest temperature, averaging about 22 – 23 ° c. The standards of average, supreme, low temperature and temperature changes of the months are all suitable for the requirements of ginseng. At the growth and development periods of ginseng the average temperature is about 18 ° c, this is the temperature threshold suitable for ginseng. According to many studies the appropriate temperature threshold for ginseng is daytime from 20 – 23 ° c and night from 15 – 18 ° c. Monitoring results show that the thermal range between day and night in the growing area is from 8-9 ° c, which is also a very suitable factor for the growth of ginseng. When compared to ecological requirements, it can be seen that no month in the year has an average temperature greater than 23 ° c, indicating that the temperature in these regions is highly suitable for ginseng.


Relative humidity changes over time more clearly than space, both with daily and yearly changes and changes from year to year. Humidity in ginseng growing areas is higher than in other regions, with an average annual humidity of 86-87%, the highest month (August) reaches 94-95%. The reason is due to the distribution of elevation, high coverage density, low temperature background, high rainfall, and often being covered by humid cloud clouds that create high humidity for this area. The annual average humidity of ginseng growing region is about 85.5 – 87.5%, the difference in humidity between months is quite large, ranging from 5 – 7%. Relative humidity is as extreme: maximum humidity usually occurs from July to September between 89 and 94% and minimum humidity usually occurs from November to May next year, but reaches the lowest is from February to April with about 77-82%; while in the surrounding areas, the average humidity is 85-89% in the high wet season and 76-82% in the wet season. The time of high humidity coincides with the period of the southwest monsoon during the rainy season and the period of low humidity coincides with the period of operation of the northeast monsoon in the dry season.

In general, the air humidity of the project area is quite favorable for the growth and development of ginseng. In the rainy season, the amount of moisture increases, creating favorable conditions in the period of ginseng growth and development of leaf stems and flowers, coming

October humidity begins to decrease gradually, it is also the time when ginseng grows, coinciding with the period of ginseng beginning in hibernation.

Amount of evaporation:

In the Vietnamese ginseng region (Ngoc Linh ginseng), the evaporation is lower than in other regions. The area of ​​growing ginseng has an average annual evaporation of 670 – 800 mm, while in other areas is low from 850 – 1,000 mm. Evaporation quantity tends to decrease in the East – West and South – North direction. The maximum evaporation amount is about 75 mm in April and June and minimum in August to October (; 30 mm).

The amount of evaporation is lower than in other areas in the province. The total annual evaporation is from 670 to 770 mm. Evaporation tends to decrease in the East – West and South – North direction. The maximum value of evaporation is in March and April (average of 85 mm) and minimum in August (average 40 mm). Thus, compared to the requirement for the amount of moisture required for growth and development, the low evaporation of the region is a very favorable factor for increasing biomass and forming ginseng quality.

+ Botany characteristics:

The climate of Ngoc Linh massif brings many distinct features, from humid tropical climate to highland subtropical climate, In addition, the Ngoc Linh massif has a complex, strongly separated terrain, many rugged high mountains and deep narrow valleys so the flora population is also very rich and includes many different types. Lowland areas are mainly tropical moist evergreen closed forests. This type of forest is a complex, dense, multi-storey forest, mostly broad-leaved closed forest. The higher it is, the more characteristic it is for the subtropical forest with a broad leaf and needle leaf forest.

For Ngoc Linh ginseng region, it is mainly natural forest area, with evergreen broadleaf forest, bamboo and coniferous leaves. This is one of the areas with many natural forests with many kinds of rare timber and animals, which need to be protected and exploited.

Shading is a mandatory requirement for Ngoc Linh Ginseng because it is a shade-loving tree and often grows and grows under the evergreen closed canopy of broad-leaved trees, sometimes alternating coniferous trees with over 80 coverage. % Through the documents and survey results, Ngoc Linh ginseng growing area is mostly in the protective forest belt (understood as primary forest) of both Kon Tum and Quang Nam provinces, along with the influence of humans are not much, so they created humus layer under thick litter which is suitable for growth and development of Vietnamese ginseng (Ngoc Linh ginseng).

7. Conservation and multiplication

After the medicinal properties and health effects of Ngoc Linh ginseng are publicly announced on mass media, in the 80s of the 20th century, in the free market Ngoc Linh ginseng price is equivalent to ginseng price. Korea and in the 90s, Ngoc Linh ginseng was more expensive than Korean ginseng. According to pharmacist Dao Kim Long, even Koreans, Japanese, and countries of ginseng, came here to find Ngoc Linh ginseng to heal. The widespread exploitation, purchase and use have not had regulations on management and protection, policies, investment solutions, development planning, making over 108 natural growing areas between Quang Nam and Kon Tum gradually depleted. exhausted, dragging thousands of hectares of primeval forest devastated.

Facing the risk of extinction of the precious ginseng, the Government of Vietnam decided to establish a national ban in ginseng growing areas concentrated in Kon Tum and Quang Nam provinces, and ranked Ngoc Linh ginseng in the list of Illegal exploitation and sale of trees.

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