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The Palouse area is located on the Columbia Plateau in Southeastern Washington State.
It is given mostly to farming and from a distance resembles the flat rolling areas in Tuscany minus the cypress trees. The Palouse area is said to have been formed by repeated soil deposition from continuous massive floods during the last ice age.
Ice dams melted and released enormous amounts of water that flowed for hundreds of miles releasing soils as the foods washed down the Columbia River Gorge. This tree is the only feature for miles. I would assume that it was left alone because of its will to survive in a foreign environment.