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How to Remove a Tree and Stump

If a tree falls in my yard and no one is around to hear it, can I just leave it there? Unfortunately unless you live in the forest, a fallen tree in the yard can be a mess.

First survey the tree and area for any power lines that could have been brought down. Do NOT enter an area where there are any power lines touching the tree or on the ground. Call the utility company and your local emergency center immediately and report the situation.

When you have determined the area is safe from electrical hazards, unless you are removing the tree yourself, call a tree removal service. Using a chain saw and cutting up and removing a large tree is not a job for a novice. Fallen trees can be very dangerous and as cuts are made the weight can shift and branches can break and fall and the tree can roll.

Cutting up and removing the trunk and branches of a fallen tree can be the easiest part of the clean up.

After you clean up the debris, you still have a stump. What’s the best way to remove a tree stump from your yard? This depends on the type of the tree, size of the stump, and how patient you are.

There are several methods for removing tree stumps involving recruiting from Mother Nature to using brute force.

Brute Force

This method is the epitome of the definition of “brute force.” First you dig around the stump chopping your way through any roots you encounter. When you are deep enough to get a chain securely around or underneath the stump you connect the other end to a winch mounted to another tree or vehicle. An electric power winch is a wise choice.

Be extremely careful by making sure everyone is out of the area and that the winch operator is well shielded. If the winch cable or chain breaks, or if the chain slips off the stump, a deadly catapulted steel whip can result. Any property in range could also be severely damaged including the vehicle.

There are plenty of macho types that might be laughing when they read this however if all these instructions make you a bit weak in the knees, there are plenty of other docile methods for removing stumps.

IHampton Roadsection Method

If you have a little patience you can help the stump break down.

1. Get the stump cut down as low as possible to the ground.
2. Drill holes at least a half an inch in diameter as far down as the length of the bit as possible in the stump. One hole about every three inches is good.
3. Fill the holes with water. Put a fertilizer in which has a high nitrogen content. You could even use cow manure. There are commercial fertilizers available. Use a high nitrogen NPK fertilizer.
4. Wet the area around the stump and the stump itself with water and cover with plastic.
5. Wet the stump periodically and insert more fertilizer every few weeks.

More Ideas

There are folks who suggest rock salt will work as well as fertilizer however rock salt might kill all plants in the immediate area.

Also you could try to burn the stump depending on where it is. This can cause a mess and a charcoal stump that will then not rot as quickly. There are products for stump removal that often contain kerosene and involve burning the stump.

If the stump is accessible to equipment you could rent a stump grinder or call a professional stump grinder in your area.


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