This is not a real tree but the thing that is placed inside the shoe to maintain the shoe’s form. The shoe tree was very popular in the olden days but not anymore. Especially the men’s leather shoes, they last longer when there’s a shoe tree inside while in storage. Without using a shoe tree, the leather surface develops creases that leads to a shorter life. But if you want to save money, you can use crumpled newspaper in lieu of a shoe tree.