Ginkgo biloba is an ornamental tree in the ginkgo family. It is also known as the 40 ECU tree because of the golden color of its leaves in autumn. It is conical in the first years then widens over the years. It can reach 40 meters high. Particularly resistant, it is the first plant to have grown back after Hiroshima. This tree is native to China and has evolved for over 190 million years. The oldest listed would be 4,000 years old. It was not until the 18th century that it was introduced to Europe. Used for furniture, it is also recognized for its medicinal properties. Male trees have flowers while female trees have fruits called ova. These are edible, they are used in Asian medicine but also as an aperitif.
Ginkgo biloba species
There are about twenty species like the classic ginkgo biloba, golden ginkgo, Fairmont or Mariken, a dwarf tree from a graft. These species differ in size, the shape of their leaves and the tree itself.
Plantation of ginkgo biloba
Ginkgo biloba is planted in the fall in rich, light soil. Neutral soil is ideal for its development. It is possible to compensate for heavy soil by adding sand and poor soil by adding compost. The planting hole must be wide enough to contain the whole root ball without damaging it. It is advisable to place a stake on the young plants to promote vertical growth.
Cultivation and maintenance of ginkgo biloba
Aside from adding compost each fall, it does not require much maintenance as you age. When young, however, trees should be watered regularly and mulched to protect them from heat in summer and cold in winter.
Size of ginkgo biloba
If pruning is not essential, it still allows you to remove unnecessary or misdirected branches.
Multiplication of ginkgo biloba
This tree can be propagated by seed or by cutting. In the first case, you must collect the eggs in December from which you will remove the outer pulp. Place the rest in a terrine in moist sand then, in the spring, sow the stratified seeds in potting soil and in a partial shade location. The cuttings are made by taking a branch which you will plant in a mixture of potting soil and sand. Protect your pot with a film and water regularly until the cuttings take root. Then replant in individual pots and place them in partial shade then water until planting in the ground.
Virtues of ginkgo biloba
Ginkgo biloba has many virtues. It fights the degeneration of cells and thus fights against aging. It is an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory which also treats allergies, asthma or skin diseases. Used against headaches and fever, it is also recommended to improve blood circulation. We consume the leaf or fruit of the tree.
Diseases and pests of ginkgo biloba
Very resistant, this tree can only be attacked by mealybugs against which we fight by spraying it with vegetable oil and dishwashing liquid.