Ginkgo

Family: Ginkgoaceae

Genus: Ginkgo

Botanical Name: Ginkgo Biloba

Commonly known for its dietary benefits, the Ginkgo biloba, along with the dawn redwood, is a living fossil specimen native to China. The Gingko offers a light-grey fissured bark and can produce areal roots, helping this tree to extend its longevity. It is a deciduous plant with alternating clusters of fan-shaped leaves that turn a beautiful yellowish colour in autumn before falling.

Ginkgo media

Style

Another similarity to the dawn redwood for the Ginkgo is the ability to grow quite high, making it suitable for formal or informal upright styles. But it can also be shaped in many other styles, such as slanting, forest, or cascading.

Location and Position

The Ginkgo biloba is to be kept outdoors all year round in a full-sun position. In winter, a little protection by placing it under a bench can be given when the temperature falls below zero to protect the rooting system. Once the tree is relocated in a pot, it will lose a bit of its hardiness against cold temperatures.

Watering

This tree requires a moist, well-drained environment. Do not let the Ginkgo become bone-dry or to be soaking wet; otherwise, the rooting system will suffer, and the tree may perish in the worst-case scenario.

Feeding

From growing season to autumn, I prefer to fertilise the Ginkgo biloba with an organic liquid fertiliser and then apply solid organic pellets once to cope with winter necessities.

Pruning and Pinching

For maintenance, pinch back new growth to two or three nodes once it is fully extended. Structural pruning is best carried in autumn because the foliage will have fallen, and the structure of the tree will be clearer.

Repotting and Soil

The Ginkgo can be repotted every one to two years (especially when it’s still young) or as soon the roots fill the pot in early spring. Use a well-drained bonsai soil mix.

Wiring

Autumn appears to be the best time to wire the Ginkgo because you can easily go through the tree, which will have no leaves, offering better visibility for branch placement

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3 Replies to “Ginkgo”

  1. I think it’s a good idea to leave the wires on at least through June. I wired mine in the autumn and then I tried removing my wires in early May after the leaves were out, but the bends in the branches had not fully set.

  2. You are right, sometimes it takes longer for branches to settle in place (this vary from tree to tree), and we may need to keep the wires on our Bonsai for longer periods. In this case is important to keep eyes on it during the growing season, to ensure that the wires don’t cut the bark and create ugly scars.

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