Ginkgo biloba at Bute Park

Ginkgo biloba 0

Ginkgo biloba
mid November 2015

Ginkgo biloba 1

Ginkgo biloba
early July 2017

Grid reference ST 17995 76737
Common name Maidenhair tree
Origin China
Deciduous Yes

This avenue runs northwards from the castle to what was the Castle Mews, noe the Anthony Hopkins Centre of the Roral Welsh College of Music and Drama. It was planted in the early 1950s. In August 2016 a few of the trees were bearing small quantities of fruit.

General tree description

The Ginkgo biloba is said to be a "living fossil", meaning that it has similar characteristics to fossils from the Jurassic period, 150 to 200 million years ago, also the age of the dinosaurs. At that time the Gingko grew in many parts of the world including Europe and America. It is now native only in China.

Ginkgo biloba has two-lobed, fan-shaped, leaves which turn bright yellow in autumn. The common name - Maidenhair tree - refers to the resemblance of the fan-shaped leaves to the Maidenhair fern. Ginkgos may be male or female. When fully mature (around 80 years old), the male tree has catkins amongst its leaves, while after fertilisation the female tree produces yellow plum-like fruits in autumn. These have a very unpleasant odour and can cause skin irritation.