The tree, a Monterey Cypress at Ellen Browning Scripps Park in La Jolla, California, stood throughout the 43 years that Seuss lived in a mountaintop home overlooking the park. It was estimated to be about 80 to 100 years old, Tim Graham, a spokesman for the San Diego Parks and Recreation Department, told CNN. City officials are reportedly looking into planting a replacement tree in the area.
“Though much of the scenery in La Jolla is reminiscent of Seussian-style illustration, the trees in The Lorax are particularly notable,” the La Jolla city website notes. “They belong to the fictional Truffula species in the book, but the real-life inspiration is called the Monterey Cypress and unique to the California coast.”
Seuss published The Lorax, a children’s book about the importance of being environmentally conscious, in 1971. He lived in La Jolla from 1948 until his death in 1991.