Ginko biloba Tree Planted - October 2021
I had a credit with an online nursery that was burning a hole in my pocket. It came from a tree that I bought last year that died within the first few months of being planted here in Downers Grove. When I saw an email that trumpeted a sale ALONG with Free Shipping, I decided to act. I bought a four foot tall Ginko biloba tree. I've been thinking about adding a Ginko to our yard for a long time, so when I looked at the total in my shopping cart was less than a few bucks for this tiny Ginko, I clicked the 'buy button'.
This isn't the first Ginko tree that we've had - we had a larger one that I planted in our old house that was given to me as a Kellogg graduation present from Nat's parents. That one was at least 1.5" caliper. This one? About the caliper of my pinky finger. This is the latest - and tenth tree that I planted this year, but it also is one of the smallest. The most recent trees I planted were the Sugar Tyme Crabapples against the house in the middle of September.
As for the location, I went around and around with my thinking of where to put it. I ended up planting it in the south bed - right around 'even' from the patio with the large Red Oak (tree swing) tree. Here, below, you can see the tree planted in the ground.
Now...why there? Well, because I'm not sure this tree is going to make it. Why? Because the trunk was cracked (not snapped) in half and seems that the bark has been injured pretty good. Here's the angle of the trunk about half-way up:
Below, is a closer look at the green innards that are showing where the tree cracked over:
That damage - and my presumption that this tree will NOT survive - is the biggest reason for why I planted it in the bed in the back. When I bought this tree, I was thinking of planting it as a patio tree, but based on both the damage - AND the size - I'm not sure that's the right move. Ginkos are slow growers, so putting something like this in harms way - right outside our patio - where it will get A LOT of traffic isn't going to be the right answer.
After I planted it, I took some corrective measures including bracing the trunk with a piece of wood spanning the cracked area. And, a longer, upright stick that I tied the entire tree to in an effort to keep it upright.
One other note: this tree came in a burlap bag that I wouldn't describe as a 'ball'. It was more a loose 'sack' of dirt. Same as this Lombardy Poplar tree that I planted a few years back. I ended up removing that tree's roots from the sack in order to plant it. Ultimately, that tree died pretty quickly, but I'm not sure if the bag removal was part of the stress and problem. For this Ginko, I was pretty careful to cut away the burlap while trying to keep as much soil around the roots as possible. Alas, only time will tell if this tree makes it next Spring. They're supposed to send me another replacement tree that I'm now thinking of planting in the strip 'in between two driveways' as a sort-of understory tree to the hackberry tree that I think will go into decline in the coming years. Here's a post showing my thinking for front-yard trees.
As for this particular Ginko tree, it has *some* leaves on it, but they seem stressed (when the tree arrived), with splits in fan-shape that you traditionally see in these beautiful leaves. I'm going to water this thing in all Fall in the hopes that we'll see some buds to set before it goes dormant this Winter. See the split in the leaf below:
62 trees planted/5 growing seasons = 12.4 trees on average planted each season.
41 trees alive/5 growing seasons = 8.2 trees on average survive each season.
1. Flowering Pear in backyard on north side.
3. Japanese flowering cherry
4 and 5: 2 Lindens that I espalier'd and placed by the south fence line near our kitchen windows.
7. Nat's Saucer Magnolia in our front yard
2018 (17 planted. 6 Dead):
14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21. These Frans Fontaine Hornbeams.
22. A replacement Chanticleer Pear tree (3" caliper) out front by our garage
25. Our replanted/replacement Dawn Redwood. Same spot as the first.
26. This teeny-tiny Bald Cypress that I planted in the front yard, in between our driveway and our neighbor to the north.
33. My new Weeping White Spruce that will only grow about 4' wide placed near the fence line alongside the espalier'd Lindens.
46. A small Northern Red Oak tree - our first Oak tree planted.
47. A 'decapitated' Lavender Twist Weeping Redbud that I planted on a whim.
49. A tall(ish) London Plane tree that suffered some transplant and frost shock, but seemed to recover.