Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Ginko Stinko

Here's something I didn't know before we agreed to have four ginkgo trees planted in the front yard...the female trees drop seeds in the fall, which rot and smell like dog-poo...or vomit...or other nasty things, depending on what article you read.

The good news? We won't find out for another 20 -30 years whether we have a problem.  We most likely planted four male trees. Males do not produce any fruit. Young females do not produce any fruit either.  So if you smell something odd around my house, unfortunately, we can't blame the trees. 

Other interesting facts about ginkgos:
- 'Frank Lloyd Wright picked it as his favorite tree' 1
- In the fall, the leaves turn bright yellow, then fall off quickly (in a couple days), right? 2 
- 'Ginkgo is one of the oldest living tree species.' is described as a living fossil 3

Our neighbours have a mature female ginkgo in their backyard, they tipped us off about the smell...I also noticed a very young ginkgo planted on our other neighbors front lawn.  In fact, now that we have them, I am likely to notice Ginkgos everywhere...So tell me, do you have any Ginkgo's on your lot? In your hood?

3. Ginkgo Biloba

I didn't come up with the name of this post, let's give dave some credit too!


  1. I love the way your backyard is taking shape...might even need the name of the landscapers you are using!
    Cross my fingers that your gingko's are male - they are beautiful trees.

  2. I love Gingkos, but I had no idea about the smell! So weird!

  3. I think there is one near Hart House at U of T (or there used to be, oh, 12 years ago!). I used the gym there and they would always post a sign because of the stench near the path. I guess they got a lot of "comments" on the odour and wanted to clarify that it was the trees - not the maintenance!