The Commonwealth of Virginia has adopted new regulations aimed at ensuring wild ginseng survives in the state.

The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services says the regulations address concerns by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

The changes include pushing back the opening of the harvesting season from August 15th to September first.  Only ginseng that is at least five years old can be harvested.  The regulations also prohibit harvesting wild ginseng that has fewer than four stem scars or has fewer than three prongs.

Ginseng dealers can only buy uncertified dry wild ginseng root from September 15th through March 31st.

These new regulations do not apply to people who harvest wild ginseng on their own land.