Feed the Tree is a song by Belly, released as the band’s first single from their debut album, Star, in 1993. .
Feed the Tree became a surprise pop hit peaking at # 95 on the U.S Billboard Hot 100 singles chart in the late spring of 1993. Before breaking into the Hot 100 it was a chart topper on the Billboard Bubbling Under The Hot 100 singles for 6 weeks.
Band leader Tanya Donelly, who had played with her stepsister Kristin Hersh in Throwing Muses, and in The Breeders, was quoted in The Illinois Entertainer as saying this song was about commitment and respect. The metaphor is the tree that would be planted on large farms as a point of reference to getting around (the only tree sometimes). Because nothing would grow under the large tree, the family would be buried under it. Hence: “Take your hat off, boy when you’re talking to me and be there when I feed the tree.”