Gardening Laidback Gardener Tip of the Day Trees

The Ideal Tree for Commemorating a Birth

This ginkgo is over 100 years old.

In some families, there is a long tradition of planting a tree at the birth or adoption of a child. If not, why not start one? That way, 15, 30 or 60 years later, the child, now an adult, will always have “their” tree.

But what tree should you plant?

Where it will grow (hardiness zones 3 to 8), the ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba) is perhaps the best choice. Its growth is slow but steady, it thrives in almost any well-drained soil, it is resistant to insects and diseases and, especially, it lives a long, long time: 1000 years or even more. So even if the newborn lives to be over 100 years old, their commemorative tree will always be there to remind them of their family.

Larry Hodgson is one of Canada’s best-known garden communicators. He has notably been editor-in-chief of HousePlant Magazine, Fleurs, Plantes et Jardins, À Fleur de Pot and Houseplant Forum magazines and is currently the garden correspondent for Le Soleil and radio garden commentator for CKIA-FM Radio. He has written for many garden publications in both the United States and Canada, including Canadian Gardening, Harrowsmith, Horticulture, Fine Gardening and Organic Gardening. He also speaks frequently to horticultural groups throughout Canada and the U.S. His book credits include The Garden Lover’s Guide to Canada, Complete Guide to Houseplants, Making the Most of Shade, Perennials for Every Purpose, Annuals for Every Purpose, and Houseplants for Dummies, as well as nearly 60 other titles in English and French. He is a past president of the Garden Writers Association (now Garden Communicators International) and the winner of the prestigious 2006 Garden Media Promoter Award offered by the Perennial Plant Association. He resides in Quebec City, Quebec, Canada.

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