The Kite-Eating Tree is a fictional tree in the Peanuts comic strip created by Charles M. Schulz. In the comics, when Charlie Brown attempts to fly a kite, the kite always ends up tangled in the tree. In an editorial from 1964, the US Catholic states that Charlie Brown's encounters with the Kite-Eating Tree represent "defeat, but not capitulation" because Charlie Brown "refuses to concede that the impossible won’t someday happen—that he will manage to get the kite in the sky, where it belongs."
Schulz considered the tree one of the series' 12 major set pieces. He created the tree in response to his experiences with kites getting caught in trees, both as a child and when flying kites with his children. He stated that the kite "usually disappears over a period of several weeks. Now obviously the kite had to go someplace, so it seemed to me that the tree must be eating it." 
One of the series featuring the Kite-Eating Tree in which Charlie Brown holds onto the string of his kite in the tree for eight days, before having to let go when it begins raining, was cited as demonstrating that the "humor of Peanuts lies in the extremity of bad luck the characters" face. In another series, Charlie Brown bit the tree, after which he had to flee from the Environmental Protection Agency.
The Kite-Eating Tree has played a part in adaptations of the comic strip including the musical You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown (1967), The Peanuts Movie (2015) and as a ride at the Peanuts-themed Knott's Berry Farm. At the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center, a tree in the courtyard is designated as a representation of the Kite-Eating Tree.
In popular culture
- In the Robot Chicken episode "Vegetable Funfest" in the skit "The Time of the Great Pumpkin", a parody of It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown where Linus summons the Great Pumpkin using black magic which goes around killing the Peanuts characters in a horror movie fashion. The last survivor Charlie Brown flees to the Kite-Eating Tree which ends up eating the Great Pumpkin, saving Charlie Brown's life and ending the Great Pumpkin's rampage.
- Version 3.4.3 of the R programming language was nicknamed as Kite-Eating Tree
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