View Full Version : removing tree stumps

02-04-2003, 09:44 PM
I live in central North Carolina, and was hit rather hard with the ice storm this year. We lost a lot of trees - an area that was previously "forest" is now empty ... except for tree stumps. I'd like to clear the stumps out and plant a garden in the area. Most of the stumps are 8-10 inches across, and I'd like to do this in the most economical manner possible (we'll be selling the house within two years).
I've heard of chemicals that you can pour on the stumps...how well do these work, how long does it take, and how expensive are they?
We've also considered stump grinding...haven't looked into it yet, but we're thinking it could be expensive.
Pulling them out is another option, but it would mean tearing up another area of the yard.
Any other suggestions are welcome.

Mark B
02-04-2003, 11:20 PM
You can cross cut the stump so it can't seal itself off. You can hire a guy to come in grind the stumps out for you or even dig them out. What part are you from? I'm in Burlington,N.C. Shoot me an email if ya have any questions.

02-11-2003, 05:50 PM
I just rented a stump grinder last week for 1/2 day $60. They are available at most rental stores and for that size I'd look into 5.5 and up Horsepower. It will probably be a tow behind unit so make sure you have a vehicle that has a ball or can mount a ball, don't worry about the weight, they're meant to be pulled around the yard by people with no machines (as long as its flat). Anyways, usually it will cost about $3-4 per inch of stump diamater to have someone do this for you. Add up the stumps and diamaters and find out if it is better to do it yourself. It should only take a strong person 10 min or so to cut an 8-10" stump below grade if they are good, it took me about 45 minutes to do each of my three trees with a 26-30" diameter, but that is about ten times as much work. If you do go this route, make sure to buy a pair of earplugs while at the store, the machine will surely make your ears scream after a few minutes.

02-11-2003, 11:13 PM
Small rental stump grinders are a waste of time and effort unlessa the stumps a

You need to find someone who will grind the stumps at an hourly rate instead of the per inch method. Small stumps just take 2-3 minutes to do. A good man can do alot of stumps in an hour.
expect to pay anywhere from 85-125 an hour..

If you have a few years for the stumps to rot using the chemical, then do that.

02-20-2003, 05:44 PM
Most rental stores around here have mini x's by bobcat. They are just a little excavator and should pull out this stumps. Or if you are not confident with thant get a bobcat with a set of forks and put the forks close together and just pick them out...we do this alot. works will.


02-25-2003, 01:36 PM
My preferred method is to hitch the back of my pickup truck up to the stump using a short lenth of chain and popping it out.
If not that, then just go get a dude to grind it.

Or you could have fun and blow it out with dynamite....:D


02-25-2003, 01:46 PM
Originally posted by Swampbeast
My preferred method is to hitch the back of my pickup truck up to the stump using a short lenth of chain and popping it out.

Im sure you know to be very careful. I have heard many cases of the chain breaking and snapping back, breaking out the back window and even injuring the driver. A budy was doing that and he ruined his tailgate. :(

02-25-2003, 03:41 PM
I dont really have to worry about that, I use 1/2 inch chain. No stump the small side of a Redwood is gonna break that.
Though I have had stumps pop out of the ground so fast they go flying. To keep that from happening, I simply tie a rope that goes the opposite direction of the pull to another tree behind it, with lots of slack in it. That way, when the stump pops out, the rope keeps it from hitting my truck.


02-28-2003, 02:09 AM
The best method is fire. Just buy some charcoal and set it on fire on top of your stump. Check it often to make sure it is still on fire. When it gets down to ground level use a blower to heat up the pile and burn the roots out. Easy as pie! :blob2:

My method is the stumpgrinders worst nightmare! :D

kickin sum grass
03-01-2003, 07:35 PM
try not to be to confident with that 1/2 inch chain. it only takes 1 weak link and remeber that each time you use it it will get weaker. I have seen many a chain break (larger size chains) and almost seen a guy get his head tooken off. he was on a tractor and the chain came up and slapped the armrest. it woulda killed him if it had been over 2".

What you can do to help flyback is to take another chain and drape it back and forth over the pulling chain. This way if it breaks the weight of the draped chain will reduce or eliminate the flyback.

It work good unless you are getting a run and yanking the chain hard.

03-01-2003, 11:46 PM
I do the chain draping thing with the large stumps. With teh small stumps I dont bother. Its not a big issue though, I really dont do all that much stump yanking. Maybe 16 times in a whole year. Thanks for the advice though.


03-04-2003, 06:22 PM
Here is an image of a low budget stump burning. It was about 14 inches across and got burned about 2 inches under the ground. The blower and sprocket helped to concentrate the heat. It took some holes drilled in the top and some diesel fuel to get it going. Took about three hours.

03-05-2003, 02:42 AM
Great picture and advice wallysue!

03-05-2003, 10:03 PM
Fastest way is either to pull it out or rent a stump grinder.Chemicals dont work fast enough