Saratoga Ginko Tree - Planted - Spring 2022
The sign at the Morton Sale is below and includes this description: "The tightly packed, fan-shaped leaves of this Ginko are longer and deeply split, giving an overall lacy, fine textured appearance to this tree. Has beautiful golden Autumn color. "
It also includes the price: $30 for a Ginko tree. Can't beat that, right?
The Chicago Botanic Garden tells more of the story including: "It has unusually large and pendulous leaves. The leaves are deeply divided, elongated, and resemble a fish-tail palm leaf....Saratoga Ginkgo has symmetrical branching and matures into full, dense, pyramidal form. It is slightly smaller than other selections, but not a dwarf. It is about one-half to two-thirds the size of the Autumn Gold Ginkgo."
Now...Where to put it? Back in 2019, I outlined the position of a series of future-looking front-yard trees. That included backfilling *under* a couple of trees (Mulberry by sidewalk and declining Norway Maple by porch) and adding some new trees. I called out four locations at that time. I've subsequently filled one of them - IB2DWs with the Ginko last Fall. That leaves three locations: Driveway/sidewalk lawn side for 'framing', parkway #2 and backfill planting for the Norway Maple.
Which did I pick? Well...none of them. I picked a whole *new* location. Right by our front walk where we have a small bed of three Little Henry Sweetspire shrubs leading to our front stoop.
Remember what the Chicago Botanic Gardens said? This is smaller than a traditional Ginko, but not a dwarf. I thought this would be a great spot to grow this in-between size tree.
I've (now) planted three front-yard trees and have learned from each one. Close to the house and driveway, we're dealing with a thick, hard-to-penetrate layer of clay from backfilling the site. After seeing our first two Chanticleer Pear trees basically drown in their own water, I decided to research a little bit on clay bowls and how to plant in them. That started with an experiment with the small Bald Cypress tree IB2DWs in 2018. For that planting, I used a post-hole digger to dig down BELOW the clay layer to allow for (and create) a "drain" of sorts that would allow for the water to seep out. That seemed to work, so I've done much the same with everything I've planted in similar clay.
For this Saratoga Ginko Tree, I pulled out the post-hole digger and dug deep. Remember...what did Ralph Snodsmith say about digging holes? Using that post-hole digger to get deep makes this a $5 hole.
This is the seventh tree of the season. The first six were the Green Giant Thujas from March. This will be the 75th tree planted (wow...75 trees!), there are 54 of those 74 that are still alive.
Six growing seasons (this being REALLY early in the season):
75 trees planted/6 growing seasons = 12.5 trees on average planted each season.
54 trees alive/6 growing seasons = 9 trees on average survive each season.
I wasn't planning on focusing (very much) on trees, so these might end up being all of the plantings for the year - which would put 2022 at the bottom of the season list.
Here's the full accounting:
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.