He planted the tree 33 years ago
Pepper Tree via Wikipedia Commons
UPDATE: This tale of tree hugger revenge was too good be true. We fell for the tree troll, just like nearly everyone else did. The wise folks over at Snopes did their homework and discovered some obvious holes in the story of the person claiming to have planted the revenge trees. Obviously, we’re not happy about being taken for a ride, but we’ll at least be transparent about it! As Snopes explains:
Although the claims made in the original post about “Clyde,” sequoia/redwood trees, Redondo Beach, and petty revenge are not impossible, they are highly implausible. An arborist would know, for one thing, that giant sequoias and redwoods would not be able to grow at the rate described in Redondo Beach — or likely at all, given the historic drought that overtook southern California for several years until it officially ended in late 2016.
Imgur user and arborist Chillipatilli lost a dear friend three years ago that he named Clyde. Clyde wasn’t a dog, cat, or tortoise, but a pepper tree he planted 33 years ago. Unfortunately, the city council in Redondo Beach, California, demanded that Clyde be uprooted because his roots were disturbing a nearby sidewalk. Chillipatilli saw the city’s decision to kill his beloved tree as an act of violence, so he plotted the sweetest revenge possible.
In a post on Imgur, Chillipatilli accuses the mayor of committing a heinous act against his family. “Mayor Steve Aspel. You killed my child,” the arborist wrote. Now, this may seem a bit extreme to the average person, but arborists know that trees live complex lives. They share their own food and communicate with one another, create their own ecosystems, and are even known to “scream” when thirsty.
Three years after the death of Clyde, Chillipatilli finally went public about the sweet revenge he took on both the city of Redondo Beach as well as Mayor Steve Aspel.
General Sherman in all of his glory.