shake (one's) tree

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shake (one's) tree

To provoke or compel one into taking some sort of action or reform. I believe people are electing radical candidates like her because they want to shake the government's tree. The employees' strike certainly shook our tree a bit, so we've begun
See also: shake, tree
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

shake someone's tree

Arouse to action or reaction, disturb, as in He really shook Hollywood's tree.
See also: shake, tree
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

shake (someone's) tree

Slang
To arouse to action or reaction; disturb: "[He] so shook Hollywood's tree that ... all manner of ... people called me unsolicited to itemize his mistakes or praise his courage" (Tina Brown).
See also: shake, tree
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
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References in periodicals archive ?
I'm at the point in my life where if you don't want my peaches, don't shake my tree. I'm into Happy Town, and if you don't want to live in Happy Town, move, baby." Okaaay!
In addition, the romantic image of Janie's sexual awakening, lying under a pear tree watching bees pollinate flowers, is passive, as Mary Helen Washington points out, yet also suggests a strongly sexual blues image (240).(17) Women's sexuality was associated with fruit trees in the classic blues, as variations such as "If you don't like my peaches / Don't shake my tree" make plain (Taft 1:617).