It Grows on Trees (1952): Arthur Lubin’s Comedy Fantasy, Starring Irene Dunne in her Last Screen Role

Arthur Lubin directed It Grows on Trees, a fantasy comedy starring Irene Dunne in her final big screen role.

The story, penned by Leonard Praskins and Barney Slater, based on their short story of the same title, concerns a couple who discover that trees in their backyard grow money.

One morning just days after Polly Baxter (Dunne) purchased a couple of trees and planted them in her backyard, a $5 bill floats in through an open window, impacting the family’s financial concerns.

She continues to collect more money, realizing that it is actually growing on the new trees she had planted. Initially, she keeps that discovery from her husband Philip (Dean Jagger), but later on he wants to turn it to the police.

Soon, the neighbors, the media, the bank, the I.R.S., and the U.S. Treasury all get involved.

Comedy ensues as the Baxters struggle with ethical dilemmas: Is this money legal or counterfeit? Or what would happen when the money dries up like old leaf?

The ever-optimistic Polly holds that the world is full of wonders, if only people would believe in them.

Cast
Joan Evans
Richard Crenna
Edith Meiser
Les Tremayne
Forrest Lewis
Frank Ferguson
Bob Sweeney
Malcolm Lee Beggs
Dee Pollock