Herbs in History

The Gingko Leaf

Montana pre-deluvian Gingko leaf fossil was formed under intense pressure while submerged beneath layers of fine mineral sands in deep water. Japanese Samurai Gingko leaf handguard was made during the Middle Edo Period. The Ginko was a symbol of samurai loyalty. A family crest composed of three leaves among approx. 260 crests for families varying in social rank from shogun to commoner is found in “Kikigaki Shokamon”, a book of heraldry written at the time of Shogun Ashikaga Yoshimasa (1436-1490). In 1687 Ihara described a kimono with Ginkgo crest in Nanshoku Okagami.