This particular Gingko tree (aka Gingko Biloba) is not just any tree. It was reportedly planted by Tang Dynasty's Emperor Taizong, the emperor portrayed in Fang Bingbing's Empress of China, from over a thousand years ago. Take a look at these stunning photos when the Gingko tree displays its full glory in late autumn.

The 1,400-year-old Gingko tree is located in an ancient Guanin (Goddess of Mercy) temple just outside of Xi'an in China's Shaanxi province. Xi'an was named Chang'an (eternal peace) in ancient times and was the capital for 10 different Chinese dynasties, including Tang (618 – 907). It is also where tourists from all around the world visit the famous tomb and terracotta army of Qin Shin Huan, China's first emperor (259 - 210 BC).

However, in late autumn, when the Gingko (literally Silver Berry in Chinese) tree sheds its leaves, throngs of visitors will gather in the ancient Buddhist temple to admire the breathtaking views of the old Gingko tree in its finest glory before winter. The temple was constructed during early Tang, and the tree was said to have been planted by Tang's Emperor Taizong himself. The tree is more than 65 feet (20 m) tall and almost 10 feet (3 m) around.

This year, the tree started shedding in late November. Take a look at these stunning photos to see how the fallen leaves form a magical golden carpet around the tree that is considered a living treasure.

(A bird's eye view:)

(Which poets have sat beneath the tree to compose poems and prose?)

(Eventually all the leaves will fall to the ground:)

What a wonderful sight indeed to rejoice in the splendor of nature.


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