The devious art of cell tower camouflage

When is a tree not really a tree? When it's a wireless tower

Disguising cellphone towers in the U.S. and other locations around the world has become sort of an art form. The unsightly towers have been hidden in church steeples, flagpoles, silos and other large edifices. Here, Reuters recently took a look at the use of different types of trees used to hide the masts. 

[ MORE: Cell towers that blend vs. those that offend ]

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

A jockey passes an imitation cypress tree that disguises a mobile connectivity mast, on the Old Mile at the Ascot racecourse in Berkshire, England. Britain's government plans to relax rules in England to make it easier for telecommunication companies to install mobile connectivity masts up to 18 feet tall. Ministers want to improve mobile communications in rural areas and speed up the rollout of 4G.

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

A man uses a metal detector in a field beside an imitation Scots pine tree that disguises a mobile connectivity tower.

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

This imitation cypress trees disguises mobile connectivity masts.

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

An imitation cypress tree tries to hide at Stotfold Cemetery in Bedfordshire, England.

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

Horses feed on hay in a field beside an imitation Scots pine tree.

cellphone towers
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

Another imitation cypress tree in Canary Wharf, London.

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

An imitation cypress tree that disguises a mobile connectivity mast is seen in a woodland copse near Old Warden in Bedfordshire, central England.

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

An imitation tree that disguises a mobile connectivity mast is seen in Berkshire, southern England.

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

An imitation Scots pine tree

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

The trunk of an imitation Scots pine tree

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

An imitation cypress tree with missing leaves

cellphone tower
Credit: REUTERS/Olivia Harris

Plastic leaves blown off an imitation Scots pine tree

Credit: YouTube.com

This CBS report discusses cell tower masters of disguise.