How to Get Rid of a Stump


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Removing a tree stump can be a bit of a task. So the team here at Stump eraser have made this handy guide for those of you looking to tackle the job yourself...

If you want to remove a stump yourself the best thing you can do yourself is to try and remove the stump by hand. This method is best for smaller tree stumps or a stump from an old or diseased tree. You’ll need the right tools to do this yourself so make sure you have a chainsaw or limbing saw, a pickaxe, a shovel, a digging bar as well as an axe and a four-wheel-drive vehicle with a chain.

1. Remove the top portion of the trunk but leave enough to leverage.

2. Use the shovel, pick and digging bar to reveal the roots around the stump.

3. Use a hose to wash away the dirt and reveal more dirt.

4. Cut off the major roots with the axe.
5. Slowly push up the stump so more roots are exposed and cut them away with the axe until it is uprooted. If you can’t uproot the stump like this wrap the chain around the stump and try pulling with the vehicle.


This is a simplified guide on how you can get rid of a stump, it can be a significant task. We are experts at stump removal so if you'd rather leave it to the experts contact us or another stump removal expert.
 
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First decide, if the stump needs to be removed at all. In many cases, the stump can and should be left as the original, natural form of Hugenkultur. Other plants can be grown near the stump and/or the stump can be used as a plant stand for a container.

The stump can also be partly ground out in the center and used as planter itself. If this is done grind or drill down through the stump completely to insure better drainage.

If the stump needs to be removed, mechanical methods are best. Use either a motorized stump grinder or the digging and prying method described above.

There are also methods the involve the application of various chemicals to the stump. These may also work, but there will be some chemical residue that can have unintended side effects.
 
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Here in Texas we are overrun with mountain cedar (ashe juniper). Dead trees and stumps will last decades. Digging them up is an extremely difficult process as the roots are large and grow wide and deep. We use Salt Peter (potassium nitrate) which changes the wood into cellulose which will decompose rather quickly. Just drill a bunch of 1/2 inch holes 3 or 4 inches deep and fill with the stuff. It also acts as a fertilizer (nitrogen) and does not harm the soil. Just cut the stump off at ground level, drill the holes, fill them and walk away. In a month or two come back and refill the holes if needed. Then when the stump has turned into a soft spongy material pour a little diesel fuel on it and set it on fire. It won't flame and burn, it just smoulders, or leave it alone and it will soon just disappear.
 

Meadowlark

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I like the approach as presented by Chuck and can testify that it works, However, if you have hundreds or thousands of them or can't wait a couple of months here is an answer:

I bought this dozer 15 years ago to clean up stumps and debris from a 50-acre tract of clear-cut mess. Today that 50 acres is beautiful pasture land and has increased in value well over 600%. The investment in the dozer pails in comparison to the increase in land value.

I offer this tool to several neighbors and we have removed many stumps in tight places without tearing up the ground too badly.

May not be for everyone, but there are very few things in life that are more fun than climbing on that old dozer and doing some work. If you have property, it is a lifesaver.

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Here in Texas we are overrun with mountain cedar (ashe juniper). Dead trees and stumps will last decades. Digging them up is an extremely difficult process as the roots are large and grow wide and deep. We use Salt Peter (potassium nitrate) which changes the wood into cellulose which will decompose rather quickly. Just drill a bunch of 1/2 inch holes 3 or 4 inches deep and fill with the stuff. It also acts as a fertilizer (nitrogen) and does not harm the soil. Just cut the stump off at ground level, drill the holes, fill them and walk away. In a month or two come back and refill the holes if needed. Then when the stump has turned into a soft spongy material pour a little diesel fuel on it and set it on fire. It won't flame and burn, it just smoulders, or leave it alone and it will soon just disappear.
Used a similar approach, instead of digging up stumps, and rotted them out with fertilizer - no need for any gas. Overtime, the stumps breakdown.
 
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I had the pleasure of digging out two stumps near my house in the past two weeks. They were presents from the previous owner who allowed 8-10 fairly large trees grow within a couple feet of the house, some touching the foundation. I pretty much used your method, the tree up against the house had turned sorta spongy and proved relatively easy to dig around then pull out with my truck. The other one was still alive and had a tap root along with being directly over my gas line so I had to dig around the tree cutting each and every root away, then dig under the tree and cut the tap root. No fun at all.

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Being in no particular hurry helps me with stumps. I flush cut them if they are in a mown area, and drill sizeable holes at the groundwater lines and in from the top for rain. The wetter I can help them be then the faster they soften. Variety can be a thing for wood types like a cedar or dogwood that are slow to go.
 

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