Gingko biloba “Maidenhair Tree” Living Fossil.
A long-lived, slow growing, deciduous tree up to 25m (75′) tall. The light green
leaves are fan shaped and two-lobed, turning stunning golden yellow in autumn.
There are separate male and female trees. Greenish catkins occur on the
male tree, and the female bears paired fruit on stalks. When ripe the
fruit is pale yellow. Old trees sometimes produce downward growing
protuberances or aerial roots from the trunks and lower branches, known
as chi-chi. These can reach the ground and take root.
Ginkgos were widespread at the time when dinosaurs roamed the earth,
around 125-220 million years ago. Today Ginkgo biloba is known as a
living fossil, because it is the only surviving representative of a
group of plants which was once common all over the world. It is believed
that this tree is native to China, and that it may be extinct in the
wild. Possibly it has only survived because for thousands of years monks
planted it around temples in China and Japan.
Plant in full sun and protect from strong winds. Ginkgos prefer deep,
fertile soils rich in organic matter, but will survive in poorer soils.
Young trees need deep, regular watering until established.
Best planted – Sydney to Perth and areas south.