50 year old YEW Removal

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by lawnyogi, Jun 2, 2004.

  1. lawnyogi

    lawnyogi LawnSite Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 73

    I have a client who would like her row of old yews and a sidewalk removed and replanted with something else.

    I have never completely removed yews, only cut and grinded them. I do not have the equipment, I would have to rent it. Maybe I could rent someting that would pull the sidewalk and the yews?

    Anybody with experience on this? Any suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.
  2. KenH

    KenH LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Messages: 1,622

    Yews, 'yew'sually have a rather large tap root..
  3. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,969

    Skid Steer will do the very nicely, but will also tear up the ground. Articulating Loader are much better about not tearing up the ground if you can rent a smaller one. However the side walk should have a lot of weight so a dump truck should also be looked into. I would not attempt to load Side walk into my Landscape dump.

    Might be best to find a dump truck owner with a backhoe and sub the tear out to him or hire him by the hour.
  4. lawnyogi

    lawnyogi LawnSite Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 73

    Yews do have some serious roots. I have removed other shrubs, but yews so far are the worst for me. Normally I wouldn't take this kind of job, but it is a friend and I can also learn from it.
  5. Ice_Gargoylle

    Ice_Gargoylle LawnSite Member
    from indiana
    Messages: 60

    i just got done removing some large yews ` 15yrs planted. the capatata's took a good .75 hrs with a large JD skid steer each. these were prolly 15 feet tall and 12" at base so judge accordingly. they were up against a wall so i couldnt quite get around them.
  6. AL Inc

    AL Inc LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,209

    I would use the skid steer with the forks to pop them out. Is the sidewalk concrete? The forks will work well for pulling that up, too.
  7. Lombardi

    Lombardi LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 538

    I just did a job removing about 30 yews that were 30 years old. We used a Cat 247 skidsteer with rubber tracks. Invest in a steel cable about 10' long with chain hooks at each end. It is easy to wrap around the base and the cable tightens up much better than a chain. It took us about 4 hours to complete. Very profitable also.
  8. Ric

    Ric LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 11,969


    Thanks for the tip on a cable instead of a chain. Yes some plants will only fold and the chain must be re-attached. Of course if we are saving the plant, we use a nylon sling. On very tender bark I will wrap it with Burlap and then shrink wrap before the nylon sling.

    Now because we do a lot of renovation landscapes we get a lot of reusable plant take outs. Don't throw away all your take outs they can be resold on another job. I actually started my nursery from take outs. Even some of the health but trimmed wrong plants can be used for propagation.
  9. D Felix

    D Felix LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,898

    Skidsteer is the wrong approach on this, IMHO.

    You need a mini-excavator with a thumb attachment. It will lift out sections of sidewalk without problem, as well as dig out the yews.

    Yews do have some serious tap roots, enough that a set of forks will really do no good with them. With the mini-ex, you can dig all the way around them, then work on popping them out from the bottom. The thumb lets you pull them out.

    Cut the yews down, leaving a 2-3 foot stump, if possible, then start digging.

  10. AL Inc

    AL Inc LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,209

    I guess it is a matter of what equipment you have. The excavator probably would work better for removing the stumps and walkway, but getting the debris to a truck or dumpster is a different story. I have done many, many of these jobs and I guarantee you I could do that whole job faster with my skid than with an ex.

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