Do you have a “Stumpy” tree?

April 5, 2024 · 1 minute read
Do you have a “Stumpy” tree?

You have probably heard of Stumpy, one of the most famous trees of this moment. If not a quick Google search with “Stumpy” and “Tidal Basin” and you can catch up on this tree in the spotlight. Stumpy is not a record-holding tree. It is not a historically significant tree.  

Stumpy is just a small decaying Yoshino cherry that only has one small live branch that flowers and leaves out. How did it get so popular  Knowing that it needs to be removed to make improvements to the tidal basin has probably helped this tree’s fame. However, stumpy has had a following on Reddit for at least 4 years. Stumpy was popular before its scheduled demise.

Stumpy shows tenacity. The tree’s root system is flooded twice a day.  It shows a ridiculous amount of decay. It doesn’t seem to produce enough leaves to keep a tree alive. And yet, this tree continues not just to survive, but put on a nice show of blossoms. This tree is a physical representation of tenacity and endurance.

Maybe you have a stumpy in your yard. You may have a tree with advanced decay, and a lot of dieback, that still persists. It may be an ornamental tree that would not cause harm if it fell.  Maybe its a larger tree in a quiet part of your yard. Somebody has probably told you it should be removed, but really, should it?

If you have a “Stumpy” tree in your yard, it may not be a classic example of aesthetic appearance. However, you may enjoy its beauty on another level. Declining trees that keep on hanging on can be symbols of grit that can give us inspiration. If there is little to no risk in leaving a tree like this in your yard, well, find your own nickname for your tree and enjoy it.