Ginkgo Trees Are Immortal

Old Ginkgo Trees Escape Death

0
2148
Ginkgo trees, which produce characteristic fan-shaped leaves, can live for thousands of years. (Marzena P. / Pixabay)

By Katherine J. Wu, Smithsonianmag.com

Nestled in the courtyard of China’s Gu Guanyin Buddhist Temple is a ginkgo tree (Ginkgo biloba) that’s been quietly shedding its leaves for 1,400 years. From its unassuming outpost in the Zhongnan Mountains, the tree has outlived the rise and fall of the Ottoman Empire, and the scourge of the Black Plague. It saw electricity revolutionize human history and watched the world’s greatest powers descend into the chaos of war twice over.

This long-lived tree will probably still be around for decades, centuries or even millennia to come. For the ginkgo, and perhaps other plants, it seems “the default condition … is immortality,” says Howard Thomas, a plant biologist from Aberystwyth University, to Science magazine’s Erin Malsbury.

Now, researchers are starting to uncover some of the botanical secrets behind the ginkgo’s astounding longevity—a concept we fast-aging humans may struggle to fathom, let alone replicate for ourselves.



Per a study published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, ginkgo trees don’t decline much as they age. Instead, the trees continue to pump out protective chemicals; unlike many other organisms, they don’t seem cellularly programmed to die.

Read Full Article on SmithsonsianMag.com

SOURCESmithsonianMag.com

ATTENTION READERS

We See The World From All Sides and Want YOU To Be Fully Informed
In fact, intentional disinformation is a disgraceful scourge in media today. So to assuage any possible errant incorrect information posted herein, we strongly encourage you to seek corroboration from other non-VT sources before forming an educated opinion.

About VT - Policies & Disclosures - Comment Policy
Due to the nature of uncensored content posted by VT's fully independent international writers, VT cannot guarantee absolute validity. All content is owned by the author exclusively. Expressed opinions are NOT necessarily the views of VT, other authors, affiliates, advertisers, sponsors, partners, or technicians. Some content may be satirical in nature. All images are the full responsibility of the article author and NOT VT.