Tree that some say inspired Dr. Seuss’ ‘The Lorax’ topples

SAN DIEGO — A century-old tree with a long trunk and bushy branches that some believe was the inspiration for fictional Truffula trees in Dr. Seuss’ “The Lorax” has fallen in a coastal San Diego park.

Officials are investigating why the wind-swept Monterey cypress toppled in Ellen Browning Scripps Park last week, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported Monday. “The tree was not dead at the time it fell, and with the exception of some stressing due to termites, was generally in good shape,” said Parks and Recreation spokesman Tim Graham.

According to local legend, the tree inspired the “The Lorax” by Theodor “Dr. Seuss” Geisel, who lived nearby and worked in an office with a sweeping view of the coastline.

But there are no facts to back up the lore. His wife, Audrey Geisel, told the La Jolla Village News in 2012 that the idea for Truffula trees in the 1971 environmental fable came from an Africa trip.

“He looked up at one of the (local) trees, and said, ‘That’s my tree. They’ve stolen my tree.’ So that’s where that came from,” Audrey Geisel said.

Geisel told interviewers over the years that “The Lorax” was inspired by the anger he felt as he watched homes and condominiums being carved into the hillsides below him. He called the book “one of the few things I ever set out to do that was straight propaganda,” according to the Union-Tribune.

In it, the title character tries to stop the Once-ler from chopping down Truffula Trees so that their tufts (“much softer than silk”) can be used to manufacture Thneeds, a classically Seussian word for all manner of worthless merchandise.

“I speak for the trees,” the Lorax says.

Geisel, who died in 1991, would often claim “The Lorax” was his favourite among the 48 books that he wrote, the newspaper said.

Officials plan to salvage some of the wood and repurpose it, and a replacement tree will be planted, Graham said.

Just Posted

Kinky campground turned down in Red Deer County

County’s municipal planning commission said campground didn’t meet regulations

City aims to improve transit efficiency

Citizen input survey is available until Aug. 6 on city’s website

Crops looking good halfway to harvest

Coming off a lousy 2018, farmers having a much better year

Adriana LaGrange tops Alberta ministers’ office costs in May

The costs accumulated by three central Alberta MLAs serving as cabinet ministers… Continue reading

Opinion: RCMP and military legal settlements ignore accountability

If you asked Canadians which institutions stand at the heart of our… Continue reading

Transat co-founder could make more than $17 million from sale to Air Canada

MONTREAL — Transat A.T. Inc. chief executive Jean-Marc Eustache stands to make… Continue reading

‘Joker’ and Fred Rogers drama among galas set for Toronto film festival

TORONTO — A standalone Joker film starring Joaquin Phoenix, a drama featuring… Continue reading

These mannequins aren’t for fashion. They’re for medical training

Lying on the table, surrounded by two nurses, a woman shrieks in… Continue reading

Lamoureux twins start foundation to help disadvantaged kids

BISMARCK, N.D. — Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson and Monique Lamoureux-Morando, stars of the United… Continue reading

Canadian swimmer Kylie Masse wins second gold at world aquatics championship

GWANGJU, Korea, Republic Of — Canadian swimmer Kylie Masse has defended her… Continue reading

Pitt, DiCaprio and Robbie reconcile a changing Hollywood

LOS ANGELES — Once upon a time, not too far from Hollywood,… Continue reading

Toronto-raised sexologist Shan Boodram on winning ‘The Game of Desire’

Toronto-raised sex educator Shan Boodram wants to bring a more “human approach”… Continue reading

Most Read