Thread: Gingko Biloba advice

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  1. #1

    Gingko Biloba advice

    I recieved a ginkgo biloba tree for a memorial tree. It is about 10 inches tall and its trunk is about as think as a pencil. We live in Southwestern PA and we are wondering whether we should plant the tree now or will the frost and snow kill such a little tree (sapling?) or should we plant it in a big pot and keep it inside til the spring? Does it need to go dormant or will it just loose its leaves? (as you can see I'm new to tree care) any advice anyone has would be greatly appreciated.
    Thank you

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Eastern PA

    RE: Gingko Biloba advice

    I'm guessing it's currently in a container?

    In any case, the fall is the best time to plant most trees - I've found a few that do better in spring plantings, but I wouldn't put the gingko in that category (mind you, the one I planted was about 5' tall, containerized, and I planted it in early June, so I don't have direct experience with it to point to). The issue here is that the tree stands a much better chance if it is planted in the ground than if it is in a pot or container for a longer time.

    You could plant it in a protected area, and then move it to its final location, but I've had better results when I plant once, and don't move them.

    The snow will make an excellent mulch. Frost may be an issue this year - I've heard warnings it's supposed to be cold. Some mulch around the tree but not touching the trunk will help keep the soil warmer. Although the roots will still very likely be in an area without mulch for the first year or so, it should still provide some benefit.

    Green Man Enviroscaping LLC

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Atlanta metro

    RE: Gingko Biloba advice

    WARNING! UNSOLICITED ADVICE FOLLOWS: (this is not an answer to your question, you may find this information useful).

    You may wish to consider where you are planting this tree in your yard. Ginkgos are either mostly male or mostly female. The female trees, at about 20 years of age, will produce a fascinating fruit every year. It is a little cumquat-looking thing that is at first green, then turns purple before falling. These fruits can be messy on the ground, as thier 3/4-inch diameter bodies are rather pulpy. Some people find the odor of these fruits awful, others really don't care one bit. They smell somewhat like mild Limburger cheese. Dogs love to eat them. They are considered delicacy in parts of China. (I am not making any statement as to thier edibility. As far as I am concerned, they are inedible) So if you think the fruit may be offensive, plant the tree away from driveways, walkways, etc.

    Now, if this is a cultivated variety of Ginkgo, it may be sterile (or completely male) and you won't have to worry about it . Otherwise, if it is a normal Ginkgo, you have a 50/50 shot at its sex. I would hate for you to find out in 20 years that you planted it in the wrong location!
    Jesse Milton Best Atlanta Trees for Fall Color

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Ocala, FL

    RE: Gingko Biloba advice

    You need to remove the fleshy pulp around the seed - that's the smelly part. Then roast. The flavor varies from tree to tree, but can be excellent.

    However, given the malodorous nature of the fallen fruit, I agree that I would plant this in a place where that won't be a problem, unless it's a nursery cultivar (in which case it's almost certainly a male).

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