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Ginkgo (Maidenhair Tree)   arrow

Ginkgo biloba (geenk’-go by-low’-bah)
Family: Ginkogaceae, Ginkgo

Key Steps


Ginkgo leafLeaf: Fan or triangular-shaped. Veins are parallel to side margins. Side margins are smooth. Top margin may have 2-3 lobes or a scalloped-appearing margin. Bright green.

Bud: Brown, overlapping scales.

Stem: Thick, pale brown to gray. Stringy and peeling on older branches. Older branches have short, black spur shoots.

Bark: Ridges are gray-brown with dark, vertical furrows.

Flower: This tree is a member of the Gymnosperms, and therefore makes cones instead of flowers. Male cones are 1 inch long in early spring, green, on short shoots. Female cones are a long (up to 2 inches) stalk, greenish/white. Dioecious (separate male and female plants).

Fruit: Because this tree is a member of the Gymnosperms, it also does not make a true fruit. The female cone that bears the seeds is a fleshy, foul smelling cone approximately the size of a plum.

Habit: Slower grower. Starts out pyramidal then becomes open and broad. Large branching structure. 50 feet tall by 30 feet spread.

Culture: Full sun. Moderate moisture requirement. Adapted to sandy soil and pH levels. Protection from extreme wind. To avoid the smelly fruit, generally only males are planted.