A mystery is born. Did the nefarious Donald Trump have the tree dug up?

WASHINGTON — A mystery is brewing at the White House about what happened to the oak tree President Donald Trump and French President Emmanuel Macron planted there last week.

The sapling was a gift from Macron on the occasion of his state visit.

News photographers snapped away Monday as Trump and Macron shovelled dirt onto the tree during a ceremonial planting on the South Lawn. By the end of the week, the tree was gone from the lawn. A pale patch of grass was left in its place.

The White House hasn’t offered an explanation.

Mystery solved by intrepid reporters on scene.

The French president’s office says there’s nothing mysterious about the disappearance of an oak tree he planted on the White House lawn.

It was put in quarantine, like other plants or animals brought into U.S. territory.

The sapling was a gift from French President Emmanuel Macron for his state visit to U.S. President Donald Trump last week.

An official in Macron’s office said Monday that Trump insisted on holding a symbolic planting ceremony alongside Macron despite the quarantine requirement. The official said both sides knew all along that the tree would go later into quarantine.

A pale patch of grass now covers the spot.

The oak originally sprouted at the World War I Battle of Belleau Wood in northern France, where about 2,000 U.S. troops died fighting a German offensive.

© 2018 The Canadian Press. All rights reserved.

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