Definition of ginkgo
1 : a gymnospermous dioecious tree (Ginkgo biloba) of eastern China that is widely grown as an ornamental or shade tree and has fan-shaped leaves and foul-smelling yellowish fleshy seed coats —called also maidenhair tree
2 : ginkgo biloba
Did You Know?
There is only one living representative of the gymnosperm order Ginkgoales, and that is the tree Ginkgo biloba. Native to China, the ginkgo has existed for some 250 million years and is often termed a living fossil. It has long been planted in Chinese and Japanese temple gardens, and is valued in many parts of the world as an attractive, fungus- and insect-resistant ornamental tree. It tolerates cold weather and can survive the adverse atmospheric conditions of urban areas. The light-colored wood, is soft and weak and has little economic value. The leaves are fan-shaped and leathery. The silvery nut, when roasted, is considered a delicacy. Studies have suggested that ginkgo supplements can enhance memory function in the elderly and delay the onset of Alzheimer’s disease.
Origin and Etymology of ginkgo
New Latin Ginkgo, from Japanese ginkyō
First Known Use: 1773
GINKGO Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of ginkgo for English Language Learners
: a large Chinese tree that has fan-shaped leaves
Learn More about ginkgo
Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about ginkgo
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