- Position: sun
- Soil: fertile, well-drained soil
- Rate of growth: slow-growing
- Flowering period: April to May
- Hardiness: fully hardy
This wonderful, ancient tree from China dates back at least 200 million years. Its distinctive, fan-shaped, bright green leaves turn bright gold when a warm autumn follows a warm summer. Mature male trees have thick, yellow catkins in late spring. This tree usually starts life shaped like a flagpole but gradually becomes wide spreading. It can cope with many city conditions, including pollution, and makes an elegant tree for a larger garden. Maidenhair trees were introduced to Japan about 1,000 years ago and often grown near temples - one reason why they are a common feature in Japanese-style gardens. The first maidenhair tree was brought to Britain and planted in Kew Gardens in 1760. It still stands today.
- Garden care: When despatched these trees have a tall main stem which is important at this stage in their development, with few branches. Require minimal pruning. Remove any broken, diseased or crossing branches in late autumn or winter. When planting incorporate lots of well-rotted garden compost in the planting hole and stake firmly.