Ginkgo Biloba: growing at home

ginkgo biloba growing at home Blog

The exotic Ginkgo tree is jokingly referred to as a “living fossil”. It is a direct descendant of the oldest seed ferns. It is assumed that in the Jurassic period about 15 different genera grew in the temperate polar Siberian forests. Today, ginkgo grows naturally in small areas in eastern China.

Ginkgo biloba

plant description

More often you can find a tree in botanical gardens. Many gardeners plant it on their plots as a decor. Ginkgo grows to a height of about 40 m, and the diameter of the trunk can reach 4.5 m. The crown, which has a pyramidal shape, looks especially beautiful.

The leaves are easily recognizable due to their unusual appearance. Two-lobed plates 5-8 cm wide grow on long petioles (about 10 cm). In autumn, the yellowed leaves quickly fall off. The root system is formed quite powerful and therefore the plant is resistant to frost and strong winds. Plants live for over 2000 years.

Ginkgo is a dioecious plant. Earrings grow on male plants, in which pollen ripens. On female trees in special primordia, after pollination, seeds are formed. Special signs that help determine the “sex” of a plant appear only after 25-30 years. Previously, one can only speculate. It is believed that in male plants the shape of the crown is more pyramidal, while in female plants it is spreading-rounded.

Pollination occurs in late spring, and the seeds ripen and fall off already in late autumn. In appearance, they resemble rounded apricot pits. A special feature of the tree is that the seeds smell very unpleasant (the smell resembles rancid oil), so it is not recommended to plant it close to living quarters.

Depending on the shape of the leaves and crown, the features of branching, several varieties of trees are cultivated. The most popular are:

  • Chris Dwart – dwarf plant and small leaves;
  • Fastigiata Blagon – the height of the tree is about 10 m (it grows by 30-40 cm per year).

How to grow at home

ginkgo seeds

Various methods are used to propagate plants: seeds, cuttings. The most common and popular method is seeds. Ginkgo is unpretentious, so problems with the germination of seed usually do not arise.

Features of propagation by seeds

Landing is possible in early March. Pre-seeds are soaked in ordinary water (1-2 days). To disinfect the seed, it is kept for 10-15 minutes in a weak solution of potassium permanganate and then washed.

To speed up seed germination and increase germination, stratification is carried out . To do this, peat, earth and sand (in equal amounts) are poured into a small container. The inoculum is placed in the moistened mixture and the container is placed in the refrigerator/cellar for 4-6 weeks. At the same time, it is not recommended to water the soil excessively, otherwise the seeds may germinate and become moldy.

Landing stages

  1. A box with a height of 12-17 cm is suitable. Drainage is poured onto the bottom – 2-3 cm of small pebbles or expanded clay. The nutrient mixture is poured.
  2. After stratification, the seeds are once again soaked in potassium permanganate, washed and placed in holes 2-3 cm deep. Sprinkled with earth.
  3. The box is covered with glass/polyethylene and placed in a warm place. The first shoots appear after about 30-40 days.

Fresh seeds have the best germination. After three to four weeks, the plants are seated in separate containers / cups. The plant develops slowly. They transfer “seedlings” to open ground, usually at the end of May. By this time, it grows to a height of 6-7 cm.

Seedling care

Since the plant does not tolerate transplants very well, it is recommended to immediately allocate a permanent place for it. Ginkgo grows well in well-lit areas. If you plan to plant several seedlings at once, you should provide them with enough space – the crown of the trees grows to an impressive size. Ginkgo planted outdoors tolerates pruning to shape well. Which significantly increases its attractiveness in a decorative sense.

From strong sunlight, the shoots can burn. Therefore, it is desirable to shade it with something. Seedlings do not require special care – it is enough to weed the soil around the planting, water it during the dry season. Fertilizers are applied to the soil at the time of planting. You can use ash or mineral mixtures. For the season it is recommended to fertilize twice.

Trees tolerate frost and strong winds well. In the first years of life, it is recommended to cover seedlings to their full height (sawdust, mulch will do). This is not difficult to do, given that ginkgo grows very slowly. You can allocate time for warming plants when permanent frosts are established – 9-10˚ C. Older plants do not need special shelters – a thick layer of snow is enough. Although, according to summer residents, the trees wintered well even in the absence of snow cover.

The subtleties of caring for indoor ginkgo

Ginkgo bonsai

If you plan to grow a plant in an apartment, then it is recommended to place the pot in a place protected from drafts and direct sunlight (otherwise the leaves will simply “burn out”). In order not to disturb the life cycle, the container is transferred to a cool room for the winter. In autumn, indoor ginkgo also sheds leaves. Do not worry about the “bare” twigs – in the spring the tree will again be covered with beautiful decorative foliage.

Recommends replanting the plant every three years. At the same time, almost half of the root system is cut off and the tree is placed in a larger container. It is desirable to engage in this process in March. If you want to give the crown an intricate shape, you need to pinch the top and shoots. Leaves are removed and branches are pruned.

In case of excessive soil moisture , root rot can damage the root system. To cure the plant, damaged roots are cut out, and the remaining ones are gently washed with water. The contaminated soil is discarded and the container is disinfected.

Breeding by cuttings


In the absence of seeds, it is quite possible to propagate the plant by cuttings (stem or root). The best time for this is the end of June. Moreover, it is better to pay attention to short shoots that do not have lignification.

Part of the foliage is removed from the cuttings and placed in a solution of root formation stimulants (Heteroauxin is quite suitable). A tablet of the drug is diluted in 5 liters of water. Seedlings are placed in the solution overnight. Then they are planted in the ground.

As a rule, cuttings are well accepted by the beginning of frost. For the winter, they are covered in the same way as other young ginkgoes. If the stalk has not taken root well, then it is better to leave it indoors.

When choosing this method, one nuance must be taken into account. In the first 2-3 years, plants grown from cuttings grow more slowly than seedlings developed from seeds. According to gardeners, stem cuttings grow more beautiful and straight than side shoot cuttings. In addition, the latter are characterized by short stature and slow development.

Diseases and pests

The plant is resistant to diseases and pests . The main problem is mice or hares, which can damage the bark in winter. Therefore, if there is a possibility of damage to the stem, it is better to protect it from rodents and animals in advance.

Application in medicine

Application in medicine

The medicinal qualities of the leaves have been known for a long time and are an important feature of the plant. Based on leaf extracts, many medicines have been created that are very popular. Thanks to specific substances, elasticity and strength of blood vessels increase, and inflammatory processes are suppressed. There are also vasodilating properties and some other effects:

  • pressure normalizes;
  • blood circulation improves;
  • lowers cholesterol levels;
  • antioxidant (protection of cells occurs due to the blocking of free radicals).

It is recommended to harvest raw materials in the fall. Yellow leaves are laid out in a shaded, well-ventilated area and then crushed.

Medicinal tea is prepared on the basis of a mixture of dried roots and leaves (1 tablespoon per liter of boiling water). Enough to drink a drink in the morning. Strengthening of immunity is noticed already 25-30 days after the start of its administration. There is also an increase in mental abilities, memory.

Use for landscaping


When creating a landscape design, a tree is planted as a tapeworm. Therefore, ginkgo looks great in a clearing. The background can also be the facade of the house or decorative fences. When choosing a landing site, experts recommend taking into account the rule according to which the height of an adult tapeworm and the width of the clearing are related as 1: 3.

An unusual ginkgo tree always attracts attention and deserves to be a decoration of the site.

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