Ginkgo biloba is a distinctive living tree with a unique place in plant evolution and
human culture. It is valued in horticulture and as a street tree, is a source of edible
“nuts” and popular in herbal medicine, and it has proved inspirational in art, literature,
and religion. Ginkgo is also a living link to diverse seed plants that flourished over 100
million years ago. With recent discoveries of extinct fossil ginkgo relatives, and the
recent draft sequence of its genome, ginkgo offers opportunities to increase public
understanding of plant science and the importance of plant conservation.