The District vs the dreaded malodorous Ginkgo biloba fruit Vol. 16

by Prince Of Petworth May 9, 2016 at 3:50 pm 8 Comments


From DDOT:

“The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) will begin the annual spraying of the female gingkgo tree (Ginkgo biloba) Sunday, May 8 from 9 pm through 6 am the next day until Thursday, May 12, weather and fruit development conditions permitting.

This annual spraying eliminates the formation of ginkgo fruit, which emits an offensive smell and falls on sidewalks and roadways. DDOT will use the same spray that it has used for the past 20 years, Shield-3EC 24(C).

Residents are advised that spraying will begin in Wards 1, 2 and 6, where female ginkgo trees are most prevalent, and continue through Wards 4, 3, 7, 8 and 5 in that order.

Spraying will occur during the evening for several nights. There is no need to move vehicles that are parked on affected streets. For questions, please contact DDOT at (202) 671-5133 or visit http://ddot.dc.gov/page/female-ginkgo-tree-removal-policy for a map of all the female ginkgo trees and more information.”

  • BettyinFH

    We had these outside my dorm in college. The shitberries smell like shitberries!


    Does this spraying actually help? I often find myself trying to navitage a fruitless path on many DC streets as there are fruits everywhere.

  • Anonymous

    Please don’t forget 12th Place again this year!!!

    • Anonymous

      And p.s. thanks for spraying!

  • donteatdcginkgo

    I used to eat a few of these while living in CA. You’ll see people collecting them for “medicinal benefits”… best to know now that they have been sprayed here in DC. Don’t Eat! and if you see people picking them up, please be a good citizen and warn them that DC sprays the trees. Surely the DC govt knows people eat them… right? http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/ginkgo-nuts.html

    • The spraying occurs in spring, before the “fruit” forms, and specifically to prevent it from forming. The ones you find in the fall should be okay (the seed inside is supposed to be very good, although I’ve never tried it), but be aware that some people react to exposure to the fruits with a dermatitis very similar to poison ivy–speaking from painful experience!

      That said, the spraying doesn’t seem to be very effective, or they miss an awful lot of the trees, because there are so many of the fruits on streets in the District every fall.

  • Francisco Sandoval

    I wonder if the 20-year old chemical formula is safe for animals.

  • Fetefone

    Please don’t miss the 1600 block of Belmont Streeet NW. Horrible to navigate every fall.


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