ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Ginkgo leafs. Two leafs of the Chinese maidenhair tree, Ginkgo biloba. This two-lobed leaf is unique among trees in that it has no midrib and no network of veins; rather the venation consists of a constantly branching fan of veins from the base of the leaf. The leaves turn a golden yellow in autumn. This species of maidenhair tree is the only living representative of the ancient Ginkgoales (family: Ginkgoaceae). Ginkgo biloba has separate male and female plants. The tree is adaptable to almost any climate, and from China it was successfully introduced into Europe early in the 18th century. Extracts of ginkgo are used in herbal medicine to improve memory and aid concentration. It increases blood flow to the brain and is used in the treatment of vertigo, dementia and Alzheimer's disease.
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