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My daughter just bought a house here in Southern California and this tree is in her back yard. Was wondering what kind of tree this is?

Leaves and fruit of tree

Tree near others to give size

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That is the "Maidenhair tree" Ginkgo biloba

The fruit is smelly (like vomit) but the seeds are edible, and used in Chinese and Japanese cuisine. It has attractive yellow leaves in the autumn.

It is a relic species, not closely related to other modern trees.

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  • Appreciate the info!!!
    – Lewis
    Sep 4 at 23:32
  • They are resistance to pollution and so are planted in urban areas of Japan. Sep 5 at 0:15
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    Having a specimen that sets fruit is quite unusual as the smell is unpleasant at best
    – kevinskio
    Sep 5 at 0:18
  • As I understand things, one of the few plant species to have distinct male and female individuals—the males are usually preferred to avoid the smell of the fruit. Had a couple on the street outside my grade school, but no smell.
    – KRyan
    Sep 5 at 3:19
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    The Ginkgo family is at least 290 million years old, and there are fossil leaves dating back to 170 million years old that look pretty much like the leaves on modern trees. They are more closely related to cycads than to any modern tree family. The latest study I read about them found that the trees do not go through senescence like all other trees, so they don't age. They suffer from no pests or diseases. As they get older, they just grow less each year. Effectively, barring environmental factors like fire or tornadoes, they could be immortal. A fascinating tree!
    – Jurp
    Sep 5 at 13:05

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