Stump Removal Processes
Pick the Method Right for You
April 2, 2020
Just as tree removal is an involved process, so is stump removal. This is one of the reasons why it’s typically not included in a professional tree removal quote. While some may choose to leave the stump where it is, others may opt to have it removed. Here are some ways of doing that.
Stump Removal Methods
There are many ways of removing a stump. Like tree removal, if any of these ways seem like too much of a process for you to handle solo, it’s always a good idea to call in professional help. Stumps are removed by either digging, grinding, burning, or via chemical stump remover. Depending on the root structure, one method may work better than another.
Digging Out the Stump
Removing a tree stump by digging it out of the ground may not require a lot of fancy machinery, but it still takes know-how and strength. Here’s how to go about it:
- Use a shovel to dig next to the stump, exposing the roots underneath. Once all of the large roots around the stump are visible, continue digging them out as much as possible. The goal is to expose everything up to the root tip. If this seems impossible, try moving on to the next stump removal method. If it’s doable, keep reading.
- Cut the roots into manageable pieces to pull out of the ground.
- Use a hoe to wrench any remaining roots. Start with the main ones and then go back and pull the rest.
- Once most of the roots have been removed, taking the stump out should be easy. Chop up any remaining wood and add it to your compost pile.
- Fill the hole with sawdust or soil so that you’re not left with a large dent in your lawn. After the material settles, add a little more until the ground is flat again.
Grinding the Stump
If digging it out proves difficult, try using a heavy-duty machine. You can rent a stump grinder from a local lawn shop or even hire someone to do the job for you. If you do it yourself, make sure you’re protected with the proper clothing and equipment.
- Fully familiarize yourself with the machine instructions. Basically, you’ll want to position the grinder over the stump and let it do its thing. It should grind the stump down all the way to the roots, but you’ll need to move it around the circumference of the stump.
- Remove the ground-up wood and add it to your compost pile so the ground can start to heal.
- Then fill the hole just as you would if you dug up the stump.
Burning the Stump
Before you set anything on fire in your backyard, check with local authorities to see if it’s legal—especially if you’re currently in a dry season.
- Surround your stump with firewood and build a fire on top.
- Keep the fire burning by adding more wood until the stump is burnt to the ground.
- Remove the ash and fill the hole as described above.
Chemical Stump Removal
If the previous methods are not feasible, try using a chemical stump remover to soften the wood and make it more manageable. You’ll want to make sure no children or animals are in the area before testing this method.
- Drill a series of large holes in the top of the stump. Space them evenly apart around the entire circumference.
- Follow the application instructions on the stump remover package before filling the holes with the formula.
- Closely monitor the condition of the stump. It should begin to soften and rot within a few weeks.
- Once it’s soft enough, begin to chop up the stump and remove pieces until it’s leveled.
- Build a fire over what’s left to get rid of everything including the roots.
- Clean up the area and fill in the hole.
If you’re still unsure of the best way to remove a tree stump, consider keeping it. Or contact Elite Tree Care for more tips on what can be done.
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