By Allison Reuther


Whether you’re a literal tree hugger or just an avid naturalist, you’re definitely going to want to wrap your arms around these unique trees. The U.S. is host to a whole slew of unique trees (we’ve already shown you 8 cool trees that defy belief), both naturally formed and molded into submission by human hands. Either way, they’re definitely worth a visit if you’re into hiking, history, or just looking for some family fun.

While not naturally formed, this tree still receives a lot of attention for the odd formation.  It was created, yes created, by Axel Erlandson who had a passion for molding trees into different shapes as they matured. Erlandson made several of these trees and created a park in Santa Cruz, California, which he dubbed the Tree Circus. This particular tree is simply called the Arch Tree. As he aged, several of the trees fell into disrepair, but in 2007 the park reopened with a new name, The Gilroy Gardens Family Theme Park; it is now a fun, educational facility that hopes to teach families how to appreciate horticulture.

Circus Tree Pic 1

Believe it or not, the Basket Tree is actually six sycamore trees fused together to create a single tree with an intricate design. This is another of Erlandson’s famous circus trees located in Santa Cruz, California and remains standing to this day.

Basket Tree Pic

The Tree Log Tunnel of Sequoia National Park is located along the Crescent Meadow Road in Giant Forest. It allegedly died of natural causes in 1937 when it fell across Crescent Meadow Road. A year later a tunnel was cut through the log and it became a major tourist attraction. The tree measures 275 feet long, 21 feet in diameter and is about 2,000 years old.


These trees aren’t quite unique in their sparseness, but in their forms. The Joshua tree grows in four different states in the West: California, Nevada, Arizona, and Utah. This particular specimen grows very quickly at first, it’s limbs twisting and turning in their rush to reach up to the sky. If you’re interested in seeing an abundance of Joshua Trees, but not quite willing to span four different states looking for them, then you can simply visit the Joshua Tree National Park, where they grow in abundance alongside various other desert blooms.

Joshua Tree Pic


Photo Credits:

Cover Photo:

Joshua Tree:

Arch Tree:

Basket Tree:

All other Photos: Shutterstock