25 October 2019 – The oldest Ginkgo biloba tree in Croatia has been crowned Croatia’s tree of the year and will represent the nation at the 2020 European Tree of the Year awards.
The tree, known as the ‘in love Ginkgo’, is located in the eastern Croatian town of Daruvar, in front of the Caste of Count Janković and is the oldest and largest of its kind in Croatia and one of the oldest in Europe. It was planted over 240 years ago.
In front of the south entrance to the castle, there are two specimens of Ginkgo biloba trees, a male and a female, originally from China. They are located inside the castle’s park, which grew simultaneously with the making of the castle and it was completed in 1780. It is the oldest tree species on Earth, which has existed for over 200 million years.
The male specimen, with the volume of its trunk over seven meters, locals call Adam, and it is protected as a horticultural monument as an individual tree. Ginkgo biloba trees can grow up to 30 meters in height and 9 meters in width.
Unlike the male specimen, the female specimen of the Ginkgo tree, which the locals call Eva, is tall and slim. Ginko biloba is a dioecious plant, it blooms from April until May and its seed are mature from October until November. The tree has been protected since 1967.
The tree will be Croatia’s representative at the the 2020 European Tree of the Year annual contest which is held to find the most ‘loveable tree’ in Europe and is held by the Environmental Partnership Association (EPA), an organization supported by the European Commission, HRT reported.
The European Tree of the Year award aims to highlight the significance of old trees in the natural and cultural heritage that deserve care and protection. Voting for the award opens at the start of 2020.