Fascinating Facts!

* The word “Ginkgo” is actually a mistake made by Engelbert Kaempfer (the man who originally described Ginkgo). He wrote down how the Japanese phonetically addressed this tree (as “Ginkyô") and incorrectly wrote it as “Ginkgo.”

* Because of the triangle or fan-shaped leaves, sometimes the Japanese called the Ginkgo tree, “I-cho.” Literally meaning “tree leaves that look like a duck’s foot.” (Look to the left to see if you can see a resemblance!) 

* You can buy Ginkgo biloba seeds (that have their outer covering removed) at many grocery stores. They are usually called “white beans” or “silver almonds.”

* In the USA, male Ginkgo trees are preferred to female Ginkgo trees (because it lacks the foul odor), but in China and Japan, the female tree is preferred (the seeds are considered to be a delicacy.)

* Kumamoto, Japan has declared Ginkgo biloba as their official tree of the city. (Look to the right to see where Kumamoto, Japan is located!)

*The symbol for the University of Tokyo is two Ginkgo biloba leaves. (Don't believe it? Click HERE to go to the official website and look at the top of the page!)

* Many people grow the Ginkgo tree as bonsai, or dwarf plants.

* If you touch the outer covering of the Ginkgo seeds, it will feel like Poison Ivy.

* Legend has it that one Ginkgo tree in China is over 3,500 years old!

* Sometimes people use the Ginkgo leaves as bookmarks to keep booklice and such off of their books.

* Ginkgo biloba is the most popular species of tree running along Manhattan (New York) sidewalks. (The picture on the left shows a massive Ginkgo tree that was taken in New York City.)

* Ginkgo biloba is one of the most prescribed treatments for aging in France and Germany.

* Short-term memory improves significantly if you take a high dosage (600 mg) of Ginkgo biloba.

* The first Ginkgo tree planted in the USA was in Philadelphia, specifically in Woodlawn Cemetery. 

* Many plant the Ginkgo for ornamental reasons.

* Ginkgo biloba is the oldest existing tree species in the world. Some even say that the genus Ginkgo is the oldest living genus of seeded plants.
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